Joined: Dec 05, 2006
i am a free software developer and i hate wince and anything proprietary.
i have been tracking the tantalising possibility of free-software-community
linux for mobile phones, for nearly three years now:
a friend of mine who visits these phone forums regularly pointed out to
me that he hasn't seen ANY news about the upcoming Neo1973, from http://www.fic.com.tw
the exciting thing about this smartphone is that it will run a completely
new - and free - applications suite, called openmoko (http://openmoko.org) and it will run linux.
now, whilst that in and of itself is pretty uninteresting to the ordinary
user (i.e. everyone but geeks who love linux) the implications are far
1) if you, an ordinary user, want to commission a free software developer
to redesign your phone, you can.
think about that for a bit.
not 'if you want nokia to add some cool feature, you can't'.
not 'if you want microsoft to add in anti-spam and anti-virus to the wince
mobile OS, you can't'.
if you want to do ANYTHING to the phone, YOU CAN.
2) security-conscious geeks are going to be on the case, creating firmware
upgrades that do things like encrypted filesystems on the flash memory, as a
first priority - and that's just the start.
3) there will be no 'control' over what you do with the phone. the manufacturer, FIC, is NOT going to 'nanny' you.
4) if you get any other linux phone (i am working on reverse-engineering
the HTC mobiles - see http://wiki.xda-developers.com) then you
can grab pretty much the same firmware from openmoko or anywhere else,
and make any linux mobile phone that you buy look EXACTLY like your
in other words, phone hardware is, thanks to FIC and to xda-developers
and openezx (http://openezx.org) starting to become like IBM PCs -
pretty much irrelevant, and you will be able to install the OS of YOUR choice -
yes that's right YOUR choice, on YOUR phone.
so in the future, if you buy new linux-compatible hardware that's supported
by openmoko, you will be able to move your entire OS as well as your
data (!) all your addresses, contacts, browser cookie history and cached
passwords - everything - onto your new linux-compatible phone.
it's a significant step forward and i can't quite understand why nobody's
mentioned openmoko and the Neo1973 on any of the phone forums before
i'll leave you with this nice photo at:
it's a VGA screen (640 x 480) and the only other phone i know that
has a 640x480 screen is the HTC universal. the other thing that's
very cool (and hilarious, to me) thing is that you can plug in USB devices
into the phone (yes that's right - it does usb host as well as usb client)
and so you can plug in a dvd RW, hard drive, keyboard, usb memory stick,
external wifi dongle, webcam, mouse - even a USB DVB or PVR televison
ANYTHING as long as it has a linux driver (yes, there are USB DVB
tv dongles supported by linux!)
watch telly or a dvd on your phone, ha ha
p.s. note to the moderators of this site: this is the first time i've used this
site. i do not work for FIC. i am an independent free software developer.
find out more about me with google or review my web site, http://lkcl.net
[ This Message was edited by: lkcl on 2006-12-05 12:35 ]