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Openmoko Phone Not Dead After All 101

Posted by timothy
from the tut-mir-leid dept.
In response to the report I posted a few days ago that the Openmoko FreeRunner phone had been discontinued, Pat Meier-Johnson writes on behalf of Openmoko to say that this isn't so. "Some bloggers have been misinterpreting a presentation by Openmoko CEO, Sean Moss-Pultz last week in Switzerland to think that the company is getting out of the phone business. That's not true. In fact, the Openmoko FreeRunner (their current model) is alive and well. (Also in Switzerland, Sean announced another project — not a phone — that they are calling 'Project B.' No details yet.) The next version of the phone, codenamed GTA03, has been suspended and there were some associated layoffs, but the GTA03 was in constant flux as a design. So the company is being prudent and focusing on the FreeRunner which has lots of open source community and most recently, embedded developer support." Glad to hear this, because the FreeRunner is an interesting phone.
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Openmoko Phone Not Dead After All

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  • Re:Excellent! (Score:1, Informative)

    by jmccarty (1510147) on Thursday April 09, 2009 @08:46PM (#27526549)
    Some more on this issue plus a video here: http://www.engadget.com/2009/04/06/openmoko-freerunner-canceled-staff-slashed/ [engadget.com]
  • by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Thursday April 09, 2009 @09:08PM (#27526755) Journal

    The real question, at the moment, is whether it's also something that would never see the light of day on android.

    Otherwise, well, Android seems to be here, now, cheaper and better in every way except openness. And honestly, forcing everything to be written for a VM has advantages -- Openmoko is likely to be bound to ARM for some time, even if something better were to come along.

  • by stupkid (16083) on Thursday April 09, 2009 @10:35PM (#27527275)

    If you are looking for an idea of the apps people have written:

    Openmoko Software Repo [opkg.org]

    This is outside of whatever software your distro includes (Debian, SHR, OM2008.12, Qtopia, etc.).

  • by Mr2001 (90979) on Thursday April 09, 2009 @11:07PM (#27527535) Homepage Journal

    Google is touting it as an open-source platform. However, as we saw last week about tethering, Google and device makers may be beholden to the interests of service providers.

    The platform is still open source, and although Google has unfortunately pulled apps from the Android Market (as seen by T-Mobile users, at least), you can still download and run them, because unlike the iPhone, Android doesn't force you to get all your software from a central repository.

    Android is in the same situation relative to phone manufacturers that Linux is relative to TiVo. You can recompile the open source code that TiVo is based on, but you can't install it on your DVR without significant hacking. Just because Linux is open source doesn't mean everyone who sells you Linux-based hardware has to give you the ability to install your own distro, because Linux isn't GPLv3 (and neither is Android).

    This isn't Google's fault any more than the TiVo situation is Linus's fault. Blame the manufacturers and carriers who insist on locking down their hardware. Nothing is stopping other manufacturers or carriers from selling hardware that isn't locked down; let them know you're willing to pay for it.

    The best chance of an open software platform for a phone is for manufacturers to all jump on the Android bandwagon but allow 'unlocked' phones to be bought in stores as with traditional GSM phones.

    "Unlocked" in that case would have to mean more than it does with traditional GSM phones. You can use an unlocked phone on any carrier, but that doesn't mean you can flash whatever firmware you want.

    By the way, if you want an Android phone that you can flash with whatever firmware you want, you can buy one today. It's called the ADP1, and you can get it for $400 after signing up as an Android developer ($25).

  • by SpzToid (869795) on Friday April 10, 2009 @02:38AM (#27528575)
    http://www.neopwn.com/ [neopwn.com]

    Neopwn runs on an optimized FULL custom Debian operating system that boots off of a microSD card with a custom Linux kernel, with a vast support range for module drivers, allowing the network security tester the ability to perform various network penetration auditing tasks that are normally carried out on a notebook or desktop workstation.

    We offer complete hardware setups as well as a standalone customized operating system (with custom driver module and kernel support). We can also deliver custom features and support options upon request for hardware or software that isn't standard with our systems.

  • by erko (806441) on Friday April 10, 2009 @11:44AM (#27532419)
    Interview with Steve Mosher from Openmoko about current state of things (7 minute video):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_d8Tsvj2TdQ [youtube.com]

    Sean Moss-Pultz's presentation at openexpo (30 minute video):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UFuwhPXYxxI&NR=1 [youtube.com]

    Head FreeSmartPhone developer, Mickey Lauer's take on things.
    http://www.vanille-media.de/site/index.php/2009/04/04/back-from-switzerland/ [vanille-media.de]

    LinuxDevices article: Openmoko: Next-gen phone bites the dust, FreeRunner lives.
    http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS8568412362.html [linuxdevices.com]
  • Re:Just ugly (Score:3, Informative)

    by BitZtream (692029) on Friday April 10, 2009 @12:47PM (#27533253)

    Multiple SMS was added after the initial release. I think it was during one of the last 1.x releases, but it most certainly didn't work out of the box.

    A2DP is only supported in mono, which is lame as shit for a iPod.

    I love my iPhone for what it is, but I have no delusions about it being more than it is, nor do I like the idea of anyone spreading false information because they just jumped on the bandwagon.

Theory is gray, but the golden tree of life is green. -- Goethe

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