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LWN.net Weekly Edition for May 16, 2013
A look at the PyPy 2.0 release
PostgreSQL 9.3 beta: Federated databases and more
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(Nearly) full tickless operation in 3.10
Sigh. That's pretty much the end unless the ex employees can really come up with something that can be sent to a PC board shop on their own.
More changes at Openmoko
Posted Jun 3, 2009 19:40 UTC (Wed) by laf0rge (subscriber, #6469)
However, it is still a 2G or 2.5G device, based on an aged SoC... many years behind the kind of hardware that proprietary competitors are shipping.
So yes, this way you can continue to design and build open hardware cellphones - but you can certainly not produce something that the typical user will get excited about.
Using a more recent SoC like the s3c64xx (intended for GTA03) or an OMAP3 or i.MX51 or whatever else you might imagine is one aspect - and it is the easy aspect. The hard part is the actual 3G/3.5G modem. Unless you go into quantities of at least hundreds of thousands, there is no business case for any modem chip vendor to help you. And then those chip vendors are not only secretive/proprietary with regard to their hardware and firmware, they also are very secretive on the external interface/protocol.
An all those electrical design issues don't even speak about issues such as mass production, QA, mechanical engineering, distribution/sales, etc.
Posted Jun 3, 2009 20:55 UTC (Wed) by farnz (guest, #17727)
And it faces a big problem due to the lack of 3G support - there are
people like me who would like a Free phone, and would pay for it, but are
provisioned with USIMs that require a 3G capable handset. I thus cannot
buy a 2.5G only handset, as my network subscription simply will not
Posted Jun 3, 2009 22:09 UTC (Wed) by drag (subscriber, #31333)
It's the flow phone.
Instead of designing a new board from scratch they took a off-the-shelf solution from Gumstix for the main processor board.
They designed a daughter board to go with it that plugs into the main board which provides break out for mounting other devices...
So what features you want depend on how much you want to spend on the thing.
Camera, regular GSM, 3G module, etc etc. If you want 3G rather then a regular wifi phone then thats probably going to cost you another 50-100 bucks or whatever.
Very very cool.
Now I have not seen anything showing a actually working phone yet... but it is still cool.
Gumstix vs. gta02-core
Posted Jun 4, 2009 10:12 UTC (Thu) by pboddie (subscriber, #50784)
Although the Gizmo Flow is a good idea, I'm not yet convinced that the Gumstix Overo boards are ready for prime time. From what I've read, the kernel build for OMAP doesn't support power management properly (http://www.gumstix.net/Hardware/cat/Benchmarks-power-temp...), leaving the components running very hot. And for those wanting to "remix" their hardware, Gumstix mainboards are not openly documented, so there's obviously a gap in the market there.
Posted Jun 5, 2009 0:41 UTC (Fri) by drag (subscriber, #31333)
Still, even though the Ovaro is not open source I think that this is probably the best approach right now for a Android phone with the combination of good performance and openness.
Posted Jun 4, 2009 10:03 UTC (Thu) by tzafrir (subscriber, #11501)
How much can be recycled out of that old design?
Posted Jun 4, 2009 6:12 UTC (Thu) by tajyrink (subscriber, #2750)
Of course in the long run newer hardware would be needed, but at least now for the first time I actually _start_ recommending Neo FreeRunner to people I've so far told to wait for the buzz-fixed version, which is now shipping.
And I'll happily use my FreeRunner for as long as it lasts, if it's truly so that nothing better comes along, like it looks currently.
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