Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux stack

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Re: Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux sta

Postby debiman » 2017-09-15 16:27

^ i feel you are antagonizing so hard that i'm being pushed into a blue-eyed pro-crowdfunding pro-foss-phone fanboy role.
i am not that person; i don't much care for this particular project. or any foss phone - and mostly because of the price that is to be expected.

i just don't think it's doomed to fail.
previous projects seem to indicate that something like this is possible.
maybe the end product is somehow less spectacular than one was led to believe, bugs and problems aplenty, longer wait and less devices sold than anticipated, but it is happening.

also, think about this:
the boundaries between classes of devices are getting blurry.
gnu/linux runs well on all sorts of ARM devices nowadays; touchscreen support exists, amongst many other things.
just look at the raspbian or armbian sites/forums...

there really isn't that much difference between a "phone" and, say, a raspi tablet.

if a phone like that would be capable to run standard linux distributions, that would be great.
i know, the UX would suck donkey balls, but nevertheless, i would love it - having a tiny gnu/linux laptop with me all the time, internet connected, and oh, i can also make phonecalls with it...

but no, i will not go and give my savings to them...
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Re: Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux sta

Postby pylkko » 2017-09-24 18:32

Apparently a few days later the Gnome project also wanted to be officially involved:
https://puri.sm/posts/gnome-foundation- ... martphone/

The good news is that they have managed to keep the money coming in, and not have it dwindle after the enthusiasts are in. They are at a unbelievable 45% now. Although, to meet the target they are aiming for, they would need to bring in about 30 K USD/ day for the next 29 days.

EDIT:
debiman wrote:i just don't think it's doomed to fail.
previous projects seem to indicate that something like this is possible.
Yeah, I guess it depends on what you consider a failure. For example, even though Ubuntu touch failed in the sense that Canonical ended the project and either laid off or moved the devs to other projects, the OS still exists as it was free (except for the name "Ubuntu") and some one forked it (calling it UBports in order to avoid using "Ubuntu"). A lot of people probably consider that a "success" and not a "failure".

A lot of people consider the GNU OS a failure, yet it exits out there and it is possible to use it as we speak.

EDIT2:

There is an interview here about the device with the CEO of Purism. Some very interesting aspects to mention are: 1) it is going to have hardware kill switches for almost everything 2) the developers are also Debian devs and aim to upstream as much as possible 3) the baseband processor is going to be entirely separated from the cpu, it is something taken from vehicle infotainment systems in order to get a free modem 4) it is going to be possible to use it without a sim card, calling landline numbers over wifi using the matrix system 5) they are designing it with mainline kernel support in mind, i.e choosing the hardware to be mainline compatible, meaning that you could update the OS for ever, and not be stuck on some specific kernel like most phones are now (3.10 kernel seems to be pretty common in android phones).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SwE9W8JasA
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Re: Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux sta

Postby pylkko » 2017-10-05 16:34

So apparently the kernel side code is going to be all open source, but the firmware for the devices is going to be closed. This is not surprising as law mandates that things like GPS and phone modems cannot be used openly by anyone (because supposedly terrorists would be harder to kill and they could make missile launching software or something like that). However, the devices with the closed firmware will be entirely separated from the main cpu, treated in a similar way as usb attached devices, for example. This is 100% unique as in most phones the closed source firmware has full access to the RAM and storage.

I noticed that they have gotten a few enterprise bundles sold even.

Also:

This is an “all-or-nothing” campaign. If there is not enough backers, credit cards are not charged. What this means is there is no risk to support early and spread the word. Your credit card is only pre-authorized to show support, once we cross the funding goal then your card is charged the amount.


Compare that with so many other tech crowd funding campaigns where people have either lost their money or the product has been delayed and delayed and/or the campaign runners ask for more money later..
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Re: Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux sta

Postby debiman » 2017-10-06 15:36

i must admit, it sounds better and better the more i hear about it, and, most importantly, other people seem to think that too:

$1,500,000
Funding Goal

$1,221,503
Funds Raised

17
Days to go

Raised Percent :
81.43%
woohoo!

see the interview with purism ceo on the lunduke show (youtube link a few posts up), for me it was a good way to check out what this is really about.
the first answers are standard "we are the best open source project ever" replies, but as the questions dig deeper, he also answers them appropriately, honestly, not evading.
and the picture i got is both realistic and idealistic.

now if only the price were such that i wouldn't need to consider this at all... one can hope i guess.
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Re: Librem 5 smartphone with FOSS Debian-based GNU/Linux sta

Postby pylkko » 2017-10-07 05:28

One thing that has not been discussed anywhere as far as I know is that Google has been developing a mobile non-linux OS (fuchsia). Well, if they move to using that as a replacement for Android, then this would be even more important.
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100% reached

Postby pylkko » 2017-10-09 19:04

Ok. So

100.76% of funds reached with 14 days still left

I would have never believed it in my life. But I believe this is a good thing.


And some more info about the development:

https://puri.sm/posts/librem5-roadmap-to-imx8/

and:

https://puri.sm/posts/librem-5-touch-and-web-browsing/

BTW. of interest is the fact that somewhere (I'm too lazy to find where it was) they said about the campaign that they are aiming at deploying in 2019, but that they deliberately put a very conservative estimate on the time table and that they believe that it might even come out quicker than the one year... well we'll see I guess. Also apparently the SOC that they are looking at is a 2017 model (i.MX 8M). I for one had assumed that if they were going with a i.MX8 that it would be one of the earlier ones (as I think the free kernel module (etnaviv) for the graphics only includes older SOC). I have no doubt that these guys will be able to bring out the product, now that they have the funding. I am fairly sure, however, that the phone will be somewhat "challenging to use" unless they manage to get Android emulation/support somehow. But on their site they say they need 10 M USD for that !!!
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