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OpenMoko Schedule Announced

CowboyNeal posted more than 7 years ago | from the preflight-check-lists dept.

165

levell writes "The schedule for the OpenMoko, an open source, Linux-based Neo1973 smart phone was posted to the community mailing list by Sean Moss-Pultz this morning. On Feb 11, free phones will be sent to key community developers and the community websites/wiki/bug tracker will be available. Then on March 11 (the official developer launch) we'll be able to buy an OpenMoko for $350. After allowing some time for innovative, slick software to be created there will be a mass market launch at which point Sean hopes that 'your mom and dad will want one too.'"

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SSH? (2, Funny)

P(0)(!P(k)+P(k+1)) (1012109) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695406)

Moko has an unfortunate homonym “moco [wordreference.com] ”; if it manages to live that one down, however, here's hoping it has ssh.

Re:SSH? (2)

adaminnj (712407) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695472)

SSH would be cool!

If Amoco can make it in Puerto Rico then Open Moco can make in the world, I hope.

Re:SSH? (0, Offtopic)

skymt (968075) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695740)

If Amoco can make it in Puerto Rico then Open Moco can make in the world, I hope.
Yes, but Amoco had an advantage: the Greek a- prefix, which clearly transforms the meaning to "not mucus." I'd much rather have "Not Mucus" than "Open Mucus."

Re:SSH? (1)

adaminnj (712407) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696254)

In Puerto Rico A moco is a booger. Crossing Greek and Spanish language would only happen on /.

Re:SSH? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695484)

Haha, that was the first thing I thought of when I saw this post.

Might as well call the thing "OpenBooger"

Re:SSH? (3, Interesting)

levell (538346) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696408)

The Nintendo Wii seems to be doing okay (although there was a lot of discussion here when the name was announced), people seem to be able to get past a homonym if they like the product

Re:SSH? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17697164)

You think that's bad? I live in Monterey County, which consistently gets abbreviated to "MoCo."

And we have a rather large Hispanic population to boot!

Please.. more configs and hammers. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695436)

I like linux.. I like pain.. Veteran here..

better interface? (1, Insightful)

metaltoad (954564) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695496)

Why is the interface design always sub-par on these things? I don't care how many neat features you have if the interface is hard to use or text that is difficult to read my mom and dad are never going to want one - and neither will I.

Re:better interface? (2, Insightful)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695508)

What's wrong with the interface? Describe one you think would be better, maybe someone will implement it.

Re:better interface? (1)

thelost (808451) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695556)

preface, this IS a troll, anyhow:

apple got there first. it's called the jesuspho... er, iphone.

Apple didn't get there first (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695738)

The mono was announced almost a year ago with the multi-touch gesture support and the look of the phone. Unless Apple had a leak it is actually more probable that they stole the design of this phone...

Are you sure? (1)

StarKruzr (74642) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695968)

I don't think the OM has multi-touch support because there is a different bit of hardware required to make it work -- which I think Apple has the patent on.

Re:better interface? (4, Insightful)

ramunasg (973228) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695798)

apple got there first
No they didn't, the big difference between iPhone and OpenMoko is that OpenMoko is completely open, so anyone can extend it, while iPhone is closed and only licensed parties can write extensions. This is what uniqe about OpenMoko. Apple added glitter to iPhone, but there are other smart phones (maybe not as good, but I can't judge, it's a long wait till iPhone will be available in Europe) so nothing revolutionary about it. OpenMoko has philosophical feature - openess. So as a geek I know which one is the winner here :)

Re:better interface? (2, Interesting)

anagama (611277) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695946)

I'm with you on this. At first I was really excited about the iPhone, and then details came out. This looks like real competition for the iPhone. I don't understand why there are so many negative comments. There are plenty of people who want a phone+computing device. Perhaps not as many as those who want a phone+ipod, but so what. And when you compare specs, this thing isn't bad at all. For example, the OM has a 640x480 resolution. The iPhone has 320x480. The iPhone has a larger built in memory capacity, but the OM will take memory cards and as we all know, they are continuously getting larger and cheaper. As I'm currently in the market for a replacement PDA and phone, I'm interested in the OM. The price isn't bad either.

Re:better interface? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696334)

I knew about the openmoko before the iPhone was announced, and then when the iPhone was announced I thought 'oh thats nice' and decided that I'd much rather have the openmoko. I do after all already have an mp3 player.

Re:better interface? (1)

mspohr (589790) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696854)

Actually, the LG Prada phone will be shipping long before the Apple phone does and it looks very much like the Applephone.

Re:better interface? (1)

adaminnj (712407) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695608)

I like it.

I think if I my mother was going to use it that there would need to be better contrast and cleaner fonts. other than that I think it is going to be a real player in the market. with an open community I'm sure that there will be all kinds of cool toys and gadgets made for the Moco phone but I'm not sure that someone like my mother would know about them or try to install them on the phone.

I'm sure that the phone will be offered with a few skins and someone has thought about people like my mom.

Re:better interface? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696418)

After only casually looking at the screenshots, I might say:

1. Small font sizes
2. Grey text on grey background.
3. From the menu, an icon for calendar, clock, and date and settings that all have pieces of each other.
4. Application manager, call review, and contact icons are all very similar.
5. Is that big wheelie thing in the bottom left just chrome or interface control? If it is the scroll control, why not keep it consistent across the scrolling needs.
6. What I guess are the favorite/hot buttons on the bottom seem small, with very small mini icons inside them.

My current phone isn't any better, though. One of the things I find attractive about the iphone is that it seems clear how I am supposed to use, with large icons and large text...

Display *under* keypad (4, Interesting)

KlaymenDK (713149) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697282)

What's wrong with the interface? Describe one you think would be better, maybe someone will implement it.
Okay, I'll gladly bite! Here are a few pet peeves of mine:

For one, why does the display always have to be 'on top of' the keypad? You have to hold the thing with both hands, or nearly drop the phone while reaching for the * 0 # keys. Instead, flip it around so the display is *below* the keypad. Go on,try it with your own phone, right now (just ignore for now that your keys will be upside down):
-- One-handed typing will be much easier, as you can hold onto the phone more firmly while typing. Also note how the 'thigh' of your thumb will not obscure the display.
-- Two-handed speed-texting will be much more 'private' because your thumb's thighs will keep your display hidden from everyone but you (the teens will love this!).

For another, who the hell decided that a phone's keypad should be the inverse of a standard numeric keypad??!? That's just plain daft! Not so long ago, some phones were one way, some the other; but then some moron decided that the One True Way was NOT the way of every single keyboard. What?!?! That makes no sense!

How about that? Who will be the first to implement that? And, will they be able to patent it, now that it's described here?

What's wrong with it? (1)

StarKruzr (74642) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695998)

It's a little too orange for me, but other than that it looks well-thought-out and attractive.

Re:better interface? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696002)

I don't care how many neat features you have if the interface is hard to use .. my mom and dad are never going to want one - and neither will I.
That must be why no one ever bought a VCR and no one uses Microsoft Windows.

Slashvertisement! (-1, Troll)

NineNine (235196) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695520)

I see nothing new about this phone other than it's name. There's nothing that I can see as being newsworthy. I call "Slashvertisement"!

Re:Slashvertisement! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695736)

Explicitly free (modifiable) device with integrated GSM functionality available for development prior to launch. Please point to equivalents? Or, I suppose that if you could, you already would have in your post.

Re:Slashvertisement! (0, Troll)

NineNine (235196) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695814)

I have no idea what that means, so I'll take your word that that's a new thing. They probably should have said that in the article header for non-cell phone developers (like myself). To me, it looks like just another cell phone gadget.

Re:Slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695940)

Why are you on /. then? "I have no idea what that means" LMAO

Re:Slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696362)

You know, there are all kinds of geeks. I happen to have little to no interest in cell phones.

MOD PARENT UP! Re:Slashvertisement! (1)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695818)

the only way to get the functionality and openness of openmoko is to use a linux device like a laptop or nokia tablet or sharp zaurus and use a GSM modem adaptor (eg an audiovox or enfora CF modem and cf-pcmcia adaptor). the end result is quite a lot bigger than the 'moko.

there were hopes for the iPhone to be somewhat more open and for a full SDK to be available, but Steve Jobs nixed that one.

apart from reasonable success with the HTC Universal smartphone and other devices to which linux is being ported (usually without any help from the hw vendors), there's NOTHING competing in this space.

imagine the scene...
quick, ring the police. hold on whilst I just run "apt-get install policedb ; X=`gpsget location`; gsmsms send $LOCALPOLICE $X"

Re:MOD PARENT UP! Re:Slashvertisement! (2, Funny)

suggsjc (726146) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696146)

hold on whilst I just run "apt-get install.."
What makes you think this thing will be running a Debian based system?

For an on-topic thought. I had seen this quite a while back and was excited about the potential, but had the faint scent of vaporware on it. The screen will be very nice, but more pixels = more battery draw...which is why most of the HTC devices are stuck at qvga instead of full vga. I wonder if they have some tricks up their sleeve to mitigate that factor.

An open platform will only get so far (although it is a HUGE bonus). The hardware will have to be able to keep up its end of the bargain as well. Battery life will be a KEY factor in its overall success (as with any phone). More features doesn't make a better phone. A better experience will make a better phone. (Sorry to bring it up, but...) That is what the iPhone is promising...a better phone experience. If they can pull that off, then they can charge what they want, keep it closed, spit in your face while trying to purchase it and they will still not be able to keep them on the shelves.

Re:MOD PARENT UP! Re:Slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696390)

What makes you think this thing will be running a Debian based system?

This OpenMoko presentation [openmoko.com] specifically refers to apt-get...

Re:MOD PARENT UP! Re:Slashvertisement! (1)

MadJo (674225) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696628)

According to the sources on the mailinglist, it will use a debian like package structure... namely ipkg

Re:Slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696196)

Um, 1 month? Seriously, 1 month? Available to developers less than a month from today and for exactly 1 month before official launch? I bet this has about as much backing as that green phone. On the other hand, any competition for the Apple iPhone is good competition.

FYI (2, Informative)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695538)

Just FYI, at the moment only Cingular and T-Mobile will be able to support the phone in the US at this time.

Re:FYI (1)

spikeb (966663) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695850)

where'd you get that info? I'd like a link to some sort of page about it, so i can keep an eye on it.

It's actually kind of obvious... (3, Informative)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695914)

The OpenMoko is a GSM phone. The only primary networks using GSM in the US right at the moment are Cingular and T-Mobile. Verizon and Sprint/Nextel are CDMA...

Re:It's actually kind of obvious... (4, Interesting)

imroy (755) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696328)

Forget the U.S. with its backward mix of cellphone networks. Most of the rest of the world uses GSM [coveragemaps.com] , often with easy roaming. Put a SIM card into this phone and it will work almost anywhere across Europe, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, South America, or the Pacific.

Re:FYI (2, Informative)

yelvington (8169) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695894)

I'm not sure what point you're trying to make but your assertion is not precisely correct.

None of the carriers will "support" a phone you did not buy from them, recently. The general response to any configuration question translates to "go F* yourself." I have an unlocked GSM Windows phone (Voq) and have never been able to get MMS working because T-Mobile will not provide the necessary info.

On the other hand, an unlocked GSM phone like this one at least gives you a choice of carriers.

While Cingular/AT&T and T-Mobile effectively account for nearly all of the GSM network coverage in the United States, you can buy access from a number of "mobile virtual network operators" (even 7-11 and Wal-Mart) and get a SIM card that will work in this phone.

For that matter, any SIM card from a non-US phone company also will work if that company offers U.S. roaming. It would be a dumb way to buy your phone service if you spend all your time in the United States, but it's possible. And if you travel internationally, you can buy a local prepaid SIM card in most countries that will pop right in for cheap local calls.

You don't get that kind of flexibility from CDMA carriers like Sprint and Verizon, which are notorious for crippling phones in order to charge extra for functionality like moving your photos from your phone to your computer, or changing ring tones.

Re:FYI - Wrong? (2, Informative)

gustaffo (598224) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695954)

I think that's wrong. From the specifications, it looks like it's a GSM phone (they don't specifically say it's GSM nor do they say which frequencies it's radio supports) from the fact they say it supports GPRS.

As a result, it should work on *any* of the GSM carriers in the US that support the frequencies it uses. Let's assume for a moment it supports at a minimum 900/1800/1900 (hopefully 850 too) - like most tri-band devices do.

Take a look here [gsmworld.com] . According to GSM world there are quite a few GSM carriers in the US. That list seems to exclude Unicel, which is actually a fairly large company in it's own right. Most of the carriers do support the 1900mhz band at a minimum though there are a few 850 only carriers.

Re:FYI - Wrong? (1)

MadJo (674225) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696702)

> Let's assume for a moment it supports at a minimum 900/1800/1900 (hopefully 850 too) - like most tri-band devices do.

If I'm not mistaken, it's actually quad-band.

AT&T has the exclusive on iPhone (1)

MsGeek (162936) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696284)

(Cingular is now part of the revenant AT&T. Ma Bell has risen from the grave.)

I can think of a big motivator for T-Mobile to pick up on OpenMoko, or whatever they're going to eventually call this thing when the marketers get through with it. AT&T will have iPhone and be the only people with iPhone. T-Mobile will have what to counter it? Crackberry? Sidekick? Please.

OpenMoko looks really, really REALLY good. It has a SCARY resemblance to the Apple device, which was supposedly kept under wraps with double-secret super NDAs. It is not uber-powerful, but it is powerful enough. And it is expandable with memory cards, something Apple has decided not to do with iPhone.

T-Mobile has a very strong motivation to get behind OpenMoko and push really hard. And hey, I think the OpenMoko will look as good in magenta as it does now in orange. (Grinning, ducking and running...)

First open source mobile? I think not. (4, Informative)

GreatBunzinni (642500) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695548)

The website states the following:

2006.11.7 OpenMoko Announces the World's First Integrated Open Source Mobile Communications Platform at Open Source in Mobile Conference in Amsterdam.

First one? I beg to differ. Should I point out Trolltech's Qtopia Greenphone [trolltech.com] ? I believe it precedes OpenMoko by a considerable notch.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695574)

And, for those of us with experience of using Trolltech's programming tools the Greenphone is a fantastic piece of kit.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (2, Informative)

anagama (611277) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695988)

It better be fantastic for $890.

http://www.trolltech.com/products/qtopia/greenphon e/greenphone_pricing [trolltech.com]

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (2, Informative)

Capt. Beyond (179592) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696274)

I think you missed the community version which is $695. This comes with an SDK and uses a mature and well tested gui environment.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

anagama (611277) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696772)

It better be fantastic for merely twice the cost of the OM.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

Capt. Beyond (179592) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697384)

OpenMoko is not the phone, it is the interface on the phone. That would be like calling your desktop machine "A Windows", or "a Linux".

FIC1973 is the phone. OpenMoko is supposedly freely available when they release it, which makes OpenMoko exactly the same price as Qtopia - free.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696046)

And for those of us who think that QT is awful, the Greenphone is a fantastic piece of...

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (4, Funny)

Speare (84249) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695714)

See, that's where you're misreading the announcement. The Greenphone is not the World's First Integrated Open Source Mobile Communications Platform at Open Source in Mobile Conference in Amsterdam . The Greenphone may have been first at other locations, but not this conference. So there.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (2, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695766)

Perhaps some people don't understand how a system where pay for the SDK, is "open."

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (2, Informative)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695862)

trolltech have a dual licensing approach; some people are irritated by the idea, perhaps by the fact it is so polarised into basically
* GPL forever: at the moment you download you choose the GPL path, you can't later decide to make your project non-GPL and pay the license fee to trolltech and go commercial; this would be a PITA to any bedroom startup; however, I wouldn't be surprised if a few stealth startuos *did* bend this rule
* payware: cough up a license fee for the SDK and support

if you don't like trolltech's licensing, go write your own gui toolkit! there are other gpl choices, such as opie2, gpe

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696072)

The question is whether you can write software for the phone that doesn't use QT. If the answer is "no", then it isn't open.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696252)

Your logic is flawed.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696360)

Well, the question is realy, will the phone allow me to write software for it without using QT?

Cause I sure as heck CAN write software for Linux without using QT, but I would rather use QT.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

GreatBunzinni (642500) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696404)

Linux is GPL. Qt is GPL. The Greenphone's community SDK is GPL. If it was only possible to run Qt applications on the Greenphone, which is a Linux device, where exactly would that make it non-open?

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

pherthyl (445706) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696586)

Unfortunately for your argument, there is nothing stopping you from writing software for the Greenphone using GTK. The only problem is that they haven't done the work to make it easy, so it might be a very significant effort to get started.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696632)

As long as you software is released under GPL aswell there is no problem with using QT.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

rsidd (6328) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697084)

at the moment you download you choose the GPL path, you can't later decide to make your project non-GPL and pay the license fee to trolltech and go commercial

Any links to back up that rather weird assertion?

The GPL and commercial versions of Qt are the same, only the licence is different. End-users can run dynamically-linked commercial binaries with their local GPL copies of Qt. If you decide to go commercial, you just pay Troll Tech for a commercial licence and go ahead. There is no legal, contractual or technical obstacle to it.

(If you've already released your code as GPL, of course, you can't "take it back" -- but if you own all the copyrights to it, you can cease to release future versions under the GPL. If some copyright holders object, you can't. That has nothing to do with Troll Tech.)

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

Capt. Beyond (179592) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696114)

Perhaps some people don't understand that paying for free means it is free. The Greenphone SDK is available for a free download.
*cough*.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

GreatBunzinni (642500) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696164)

Perhaps you would be able to understand if you read the Greenphone pricing plan [trolltech.com] . You see, Trolltech only charges for the commercial release of the SDK. The community SDK is free and released under the GPL.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (1)

hritcu (871613) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696296)

Maybe it's not the first, but a Neo1973 development device will cost $350 while a Greenphone costs twice ($695).

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696432)

Did you failed to notice that OpenMoko's claim is that it was the first instead of the cheapest?

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17697194)

And is incredibly overpriced.

Sorry, but $700.00 us is way overpriced for a fricking cellphone.

Re:First open source mobile? I think not. (2, Informative)

Capt. Beyond (179592) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697340)

The Greenphone is not a consumer mobile phone, it is a reference board made in very limited quantities. It is a device for developers. It comes with a well thought out SDK based on Qt and Qtopia (both very well tested and mature), which makes creating new applications almost trivial.

$700 is not unheard of in the mobile phone world, anyway

GPRS but not EDGE? (4, Insightful)

dada21 (163177) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695590)

I rely on EDGE for high speed access throughout most of the West (US) and a large part of the East that I visit (Poland, Switzerland, India). This phone looks nice, but no EDGE means antiquated technology.

That, by itself, makes it a non-starter.

Re:GPRS but not EDGE? (1)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695886)

hopefully this will be the first of a sequence of open phones. if you are seriously interested in being a developer, then you'd need at least two of them, so buy this new "starter" one to get practising so as not to "miss the boat" for unstable/alpha testing, and when the new one comes out you can use it for the beta/release candidate unit. don't kill the device from apathy!

anyway, as I understand it, EDGE is a matter of firmware, not hardware, so I would hope GPRS + HSCD + EDGE will all be featured at some point.

the biggest missing feature as I see it is wifi & 3G, but that is definitely for the next generation.

One question... why? (2, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695594)

Okay, I grok the "Open software uber alles" mentality; it's certainly a valid point of view, but of course that's a very VERY tiny market. Reading through the linked post, however - which is just a mailing list submission - I don't really see why anyone would think there'd be any mass market appeal at all regarding this project.

That's fine, if that's what the expectations really are; but the Slashdot submission makes it sound like the people behind the phone think they can take on the world. So please, seriously - tell us WHY anyone outside the "live open or die" community will care?

Re:One question... why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695708)

Because regular phones *suck*. I have owned a couple of high quality phones (passed on to me by my father, since he really beats the crap out of them, including submersion, they really are high quality), and none of them had a decent interface. I always wished I could modify the phone, even simple stuff, and come on, the whole interface of a phone can be reprogrammed by one guy, they are not so complicated (and yes, I'm a programmer and I have done GUI programming, even if I'm usually just into low level stuff). That it is open is good because it means I can modify it, which is what I really care about.

Re:One question... why? (4, Insightful)

Coryoth (254751) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695826)

That's fine, if that's what the expectations really are; but the Slashdot submission makes it sound like the people behind the phone think they can take on the world. So please, seriously - tell us WHY anyone outside the "live open or die" community will care?

Because it is a really nice looking device and they look like they've already put together a great software stack for it, and have an expectation for a lot more interesting applications to be added prior to mass market launch. In short they expect to have mass market appeal because they think (and I have to agree with them on this) that they have a very nice smart phone. Try looking at the press page [openmoko.com] which has pictures of the device and screenshots of it. It looks good. Sure, it's not going to take over the world of mobile phones, but in the class of upper end smartphones (the sort of market the iPhone is pitched toward) it can certainly compete, and given the price, could do well.

Re:One question... why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696218)

Because it is a really nice looking device and they look like they've already put together a great software stack for it, and have an expectation for a lot more interesting applications to be added prior to mass market launch
What software stack, do you have a link ? I searched thru www.openmoko.com (all 4 pages, or so) and I couldn't find anything. This project doesn't seem too open to me. From what I see, if I want some info about the project the only way is to search thru the mail archive. If I want to get involved there's just an email address to send my resume :) . I wonder if they have an emulator or something to test the software.

Re:One question... why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696372)

thats because it is vaporware....

Re:One question... why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695842)

Maybe tired of getting ripped off? I know people who have paid money for the "privilege" of downloading a file (a ringtone, a picture, whatever) into their phone. It amazes me. FWIW, I know they're unhappy about it, just not unhappy enough to Just Say No like I do. (And even I don't Just Say No completely; I have to pay 10 cents for every text message I send/receive, even though the cost of that packet to the network provider must be a fraction of what even a second of voice costs.)

One other thing to keep in mind, is that higher quality phones would also be "free" as in "no opportunity cost." Maybe to Joe Schmoe who really doesn't care, an open phone offers nothing that a lock-in-and-squeeze-the-users phone does, but it also won't offer any less. Thus it should at least be competitive, so it's not a tiny market, it's the whole market. And if anyone can somehow get the idea into Joe Schmoe's head that, No, he really doesn't have to be constantly ripped off, then suddenly an open phone gains a tremendous competitive edge.

The iPhone (3, Insightful)

soren100 (63191) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695902)

I don't really see why anyone would think there'd be any mass market appeal at all regarding this project.
[snip] So please, seriously - tell us WHY anyone outside the "live open or die" community will care?

Au Contraire, everyone cares -- because the wireless companies have such control that the current offerings in the phone industry really suck.

Witness the current excitement over the iPhone -- it's one step closer to actually doing something really useful with all the processing power of the phone in your pocket, and people are going wild over it. Sure it's not open by any means, but the whole "open" thing means that everyone will now get the chance to try to realize their own version of a useful mobile computing device.

The weekend before the iPhone came out, I was seriously considering getting a PSP just to have a small portable wireless browsing device, but the thing was dog-slow and I couldn't enter text in any decent fashion.

My Verizon phone has bluetooth mangled on it so that I can't transfer pictures and ringtones on it, though I can use it as a wireless modem through bluetooth, which rocks. I just don't want to have to carry my Macbook around just to check bank balances and email when I am traveling or running errands. The more competition is in this space, the more we will genuinely get useful devices, not just the tiny mobile versions of the black AT&T phone (with camera) that most people have. I would buy the iPhone even if it didn't make phone calls.

Apple sees this need, and everyone is wildly excited about it. The "open" phones will be the competition that helps make the next generation of cellphones truly useful

Re:The iPhone (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696828)

the black AT&T phone (with camera) that most people have
The Motorola RAZR [motorola.com] (wiki link [wikipedia.org] )?

Re:The iPhone (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697092)

Witness the current excitement over the iPhone -- it's one step closer to actually doing something really useful with all the processing power of the phone in your pocket, and people are going wild over it.

The fact that iPhone is hawt and k3wl and sleek and from Apple accounts for a large part of its popularity. It could be just a cellphone equivalent to other 'normal' phones on the market, and the buzz would be only slightly muted.
 
 
The "open" phones will be the competition that helps make the next generation of cellphones truly useful

My cellphone has been truly useful for years now - it makes phone calls and it recieves phone calls.

Duh: News for nerds, stuff that matters (1)

p80 (771195) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695978)

You're reading Slashdot: News for nerds, stuff that matters
OpenMoko is an open phone, which means you can tweak it anyway you want, program and install anything you want, pretty nerdy don't you think?

Re:One question... why? (2, Insightful)

giffnyc (253778) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696106)

In case you hadn't noticed, open software and the computing academic community have revolutionized the way we live and work by being ahead of the curve. The essential conceptual work of the web, of network protocols, of OS refinement, and now of mobile networks owe their existence to folks like these. The issue isn't whether they'll attain a mass market, its whether their conceptual refinement of the the way we interact with mobile devices and what we expect of them will take root and inform the Cingulars and Oranges of the world.

Someone's got to break down the barrier of the walled gardens by changing the expectation of opinion leaders... Verizon isn't going to do it. Apple has created a mass market awareness of the basic problems that this phone, also, addresses. The iPhone strategy is hampered a bit by having to fit into a mass market model. This one is hampered by other things, like a significant lack of financial resources that it hopes the intellectual resource of open source contributions can counteract.

Who cares? People who have an interest in the direction that the mass market may take in the future. And that's a lot of people.

Will they succeed in mass marketing this particular gadget? Historical examples would indicate that no, they won't. But the project leaders' passion for the ideas embedded in the design are a great thing, and will drive the project forward. If they can take it just far enough to shift the direction of the mobile market as much as say, Mosaic changed its market, I think they'll have succeeded. Of course, it may just turn out to be like those home-built, woodcased hobbyist PCs those two guys named Steve were hawking backing back in the '70s.

Marketing ploy? (1)

rowama (907743) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695634)

I only read the top level article (no links) and came away with the distinct impression that this is some marketing luser's idea of how to tap into the OSS market. The high sounding goals alluding to open source philosophies together with an unrealistically compressed roadmap smells fishy. They've got nothing to lose and maybe they will sell a few $350 phones after the second month of the roadmap. If it really goes well, they will get a lot of free coding expertise from the OSS community.

I'll admit the whole area of mobile, hand-held computing is one of my many areas of ignorance. With that in mind, please excuse me if I'm off-base.

Re:Marketing ploy? (3, Informative)

levell (538346) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695712)

I think you're being overly cynical, the people who are involved in this include people like Harald Welde (of the campaign to stop [gnumonks.org] GPL violations [gpl-violations.org] . I think they genuinely believe in this, they're not just marketing weenies out to make a quick buck.

Hello Moko!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695684)

I, for one, welcome our new anus-secks having overlords!!!!

Anyone know what it runs? (0, Offtopic)

Realistic_Dragon (655151) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695716)

It looks a bit like Qtopia... but very much more slick than the version I have on my Zaurus. To be honest I was happy enough with that, this new version should cause some envy.

Slightly off topic, but on the subject of small media devices, the Penny Arcade comments on the iPhone/Zune are worth a look as they can pretty well be considered trendsetters for the market of people willing to spend lots of money on things that go beep:

http://www.penny-arcade.com/2007/01/15 [penny-arcade.com]

I had hoped that there at CES I would have an opportunity to use the Zune's social features - its "higher brain functions," as I put it - but I was only there Thursday, after the place had largely thinned out. Near the Microsoft booth I was happy to see many devices speaking wirelessly - so many I had to scroll! - until I realized that they were named after genres, and were (in fact) the display units, which added greatly to my shame.

[snip some context]

The iPhone has the hardware to make file sharing possible, though I doubt their arrangements with license holders allow for it. Even so, I'm not sure they would investigate this. My experience argues aggressively against it.


Maybe such things would work better with an open platform, so that lots of device manufacturers can implement it. Certainly in Europe the density even of iPods isn't high enough to make sharing interesting... but mp3 playing cell phones and other mp3 players of all types are probably at greater than 1 per person by now. Can't think of any better place to start working on a system than an open cell phone platform.

Spanish language users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695756)

"Moco" (pronounced the same as "moko") means "booger" in Spanish. Will this alienate international users, or will it open up a new market for cell phones for those in need of a decongestant?

smartphone newbie (0, Troll)

Speare (84249) | more than 7 years ago | (#17695786)

Okay, I'm a complete doofus when it comes to phone standards. If I end up roped to a cellphone, I leave it off unless I want to make a call, and then I turn it off again. I don't know what the different networks are, and the idea of "quad band phones with wifi and bluetooth" just makes me want to ignore all manner of phone technology for another year. Somehow in the case of phones, each sufficiently advanced technology just seems to make it less and less like magic.

That said, if I wanted a phone like this OpenMoko, and I was thinking of using it in the USA and Japan (for example), what carrier must I sell my soul to, and what web/email/pots things can I do with it in both areas?

Re:smartphone newbie (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17695856)

This announcement isn't for you. Dont worry about it.

They'll have to try and manage without your input.

Re:smartphone newbie (1)

ozamosi (615254) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696112)

You don't have to sell your soul to any carrier - it wouldn't be much of an open phone if you had to do that, would it? You buy it and put any SIM card you want in it.

Re:smartphone newbie (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696856)

Cingular or T-Mobile in the US, or pretty much any provider in other countries. You can buy the phone separately.

That's nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696038)

But can it run Linux?

No wifi :( (2, Informative)

p80 (771195) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696042)

The only problem is that there is no wifi and probably won't be for a long time. The openmoko crew refuse to implement it cause there's no chip that comes with open driver as of today and there isn't any on the horizon.

One of the greatest advantage of having an open phone is so that you can install a SIP phone on it and use it when there's a wifi connection available which is almost everywhere these days (at work, at home, lots of public places...). When there's an open phone that comes out with wifi integrated I'll be the first to get it though.

Re:No wifi :( (1)

MadJo (674225) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696682)

I, for one, know of no wifi hotspots in my neighbourhood (aside from the one at home) so, not everywhere is there wifi.
Aside from that, at offices, if you use too much bandwidth you could get fired; hotspots like at mcdonalds are limited in bandwidth, detrimental for sound quality, if you even get SIPphone services running (some hotspots even outright forbid the use of VOIP). That only leaves home, and I already have a phone there.
GSM and GPRS is much more prevalent here in Europe, almost blanket coverage. And most plans are quite cheap.

btw, do you happen to have open-source low-energy wifi-modules somewhere?

Re:No wifi :( (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696838)

Personally I would like to see wifi because I want to ditch my landline but get poor cell reception in my apartment. Using SIP and a cell phone hooked to my lan would be ideal. Maybe this is a small market segment, but I know I'm not the only one in this situation.

Must have WiFi for this crowd. (3, Informative)

Qwavel (733416) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696194)

Sounds great, shame about the WiFi.

Your average consumer might not need WiFi on their phone, but I think it is very important for the slashdot/techie/FLOSS crowd. The main reason is that we want to be able to bypass the cell network whenever possible to avoid paying. WiFi is free and plentiful for me at home, at work, and in many other places, whereas cellular bandwidth is slower and much more expensive. For syncing, downloading music, uploading pictures, and VoIP, WiFi is a requirement for my next phone.

Re:Must have WiFi for this crowd. (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697110)

Your average consumer might not need WiFi on their phone, but I think it is very important for the slashdot/techie/FLOSS crowd.

The entire slashdot/techie/FLOSS crowd could boycott this phone to a man - and never be missed.

Re:Must have WiFi for this crowd. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697220)

Then get a Nokia 770 + razr,slivr, whatever.

It's great, surfing or RSS reading is actually a pleasure on it instead of the mess that a tiny cellphone screen gives you.

Do they realize Moko = Booger in spanish? (1)

Mex (191941) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696236)

Consider this product dead already in any spanish speaking town.

Re:Do they realize Moko = Booger in spanish? (1)

niXcamiC (835033) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696918)

Where I live Moco(with a c, not a k) is snot, not booger. Mokillo is booger. Knowing how much variance there is in spanish from place to place, your probably right about it being booger where you are, but it is spelt with a c, not a k.

X11 and GTK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17696256)

Uh .. why not make it vi based while you at it ?

What a piece of junk.

Stop! Don't use LGPL software! (1)

Capt. Beyond (179592) | more than 7 years ago | (#17696308)

LGPL software is not about free and open source software, its really about proprietary software! Companies want you to think that using LGPL software like GTK+ makes them open source, but it isn't true. They don't give back to the community! The Lessor GPL allows companies to build proprietary software and to rip you off! Which do you want more of? Free and open source software? or commercial, proprietary software? If you are really for free and open source software, you would use only GPL software like Qtopia [trolltech.com] ! LGPL is not about free and open source software!

So... (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697114)

If they want "innovative, slick software", why are they turning to the open source community?

Vellocet, synthemesc, or drencrom? (1)

SIGBUS (8236) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697266)

First parsed as "Moloko." Just the sort of phone to take to the Korova Milkbar...
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