Comparing specs of 12 Linux phones
#1
I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.
#2
(08-25-2020, 09:19 AM)amosbatto Wrote: I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.


Great resource.

I think Ubuntu touch devices with good support (e.g. OnePlus 1, Nexus5, Fairphone 2) would fit well as well
#3
Thank you for time and effort put into this! It would be great if there were more options for Linux phones in the US that came on new(er) hardware and did not cost a premium. My UBports CE runs fairly well, other than not being able to make calls (T-Mobile/Mint Mobile) and very low sound. Volla looks promising so it will be interesting if someone can provide an update on if/how it works in the US once it is released.

It would also be nice if eFoundation or Fairphone could get a distributor here as well.
PinePhone UBports CE and Mobian on SD, Mint Mobile, Pinebook Pro Manjaro
#4
(08-25-2020, 01:30 PM)misha64 Wrote:
(08-25-2020, 09:19 AM)amosbatto Wrote: I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.


Great resource.

I think Ubuntu touch devices with good support (e.g. OnePlus 1, Nexus5, Fairphone 2) would fit well as well
AFAIK, you can't buy these devices with an alternative OS pre-installed. If a reputable source could provide that service, however, it would greatly expand the potential user base. Although the UB ports installer has gotten quite easy to use, (IMO) flashing the phone is a barrier to the average user.

(If anyone knows of a service like I described, I'd love to know so I could tell my less techy friends.)
#5
(08-27-2020, 07:16 AM)robthebold Wrote:
(08-25-2020, 01:30 PM)misha64 Wrote:
(08-25-2020, 09:19 AM)amosbatto Wrote: I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.


Great resource.

I think Ubuntu touch devices with good support (e.g. OnePlus 1, Nexus5, Fairphone 2) would fit well as well
AFAIK, you can't buy these devices with an alternative OS pre-installed. If a reputable source could provide that service, however, it would greatly expand the potential user base. Although the UB ports installer has gotten quite easy to use, (IMO) flashing the phone is a barrier to the average user.

(If anyone knows of a service like I described, I'd love to know so I could tell my less techy friends.)


Rather a cottage business, but I've seen this US youtuber advertising and selling used oneplus 1 and nexus 5 with ubuntu touch pre-installed:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYVU6rM...w/featured

(08-26-2020, 12:24 PM)klick Wrote: Thank you for time and effort put into this! It would be great if there were more options for Linux phones in the US that came on new(er) hardware and did not cost a premium. My UBports CE runs fairly well, other than not being able to make calls (T-Mobile/Mint Mobile) and very low sound. Volla looks promising so it will be interesting if someone can provide an update on if/how it works in the US once it is released.

It would also be nice if eFoundation or Fairphone could get a distributor here as well.

Indeed Volla and Sony phones with Sailfish OS look very interesting. Although disappointing Sailfish is partially closed source linux
#6
(08-27-2020, 11:53 AM)misha64 Wrote:
(08-27-2020, 07:16 AM)robthebold Wrote:
(08-25-2020, 01:30 PM)misha64 Wrote:
(08-25-2020, 09:19 AM)amosbatto Wrote: I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.


Great resource.

I think Ubuntu touch devices with good support (e.g. OnePlus 1, Nexus5, Fairphone 2) would fit well as well
AFAIK, you can't buy these devices with an alternative OS pre-installed. If a reputable source could provide that service, however, it would greatly expand the potential user base. Although the UB ports installer has gotten quite easy to use, (IMO) flashing the phone is a barrier to the average user.

(If anyone knows of a service like I described, I'd love to know so I could tell my less techy friends.)


Rather a cottage business, but I've seen this US youtuber advertising and selling used oneplus 1 and nexus 5 with ubuntu touch pre-installed:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYVU6rM...w/featured

(08-26-2020, 12:24 PM)klick Wrote: Thank you for time and effort put into this! It would be great if there were more options for Linux phones in the US that came on new(er) hardware and did not cost a premium. My UBports CE runs fairly well, other than not being able to make calls (T-Mobile/Mint Mobile) and very low sound. Volla looks promising so it will be interesting if someone can provide an update on if/how it works in the US once it is released.

It would also be nice if eFoundation or Fairphone could get a distributor here as well.

Indeed Volla and Sony phones with Sailfish OS look very interesting. Although disappointing Sailfish is partially closed source linux
Sailfish looks nice and although partially closed source, it probably offers more privacy then Android or iOS at this point. The majority of people are familiar with Android and iOS and how they operate and being able to always buy the latest and greatest hardware. In order to gain traction against these two OSes, any new phone hardware/software will have to offer a great product at a fairly low introductory price and scale up.

Google had the foresight to work with KaiOS and can put it on very inexpensive hardware but unfortunately it is still tied to their servers. They can reach markets where people just need a basic phone and some internet. App capability is very limited on KaiOS but Google is banking on the people's data not whether they are selling them apps. The best and fastest way to use KaiOs is through the OK Google function but that goes straight back to Google. It is a win-win for Google.

There is a very large and intelligent community of people working on Linux and Pine64 has finally provided the tool necessary for some of these people to put their skills to test and developing a potentially great phone, tablet, etc. that is not tied to sacrificing privacy over functionality and price. Hopefully Volla is successful and push even further development and the people working on the development of different OSes for the PinePhone can bring full functionality to the device to create a dependable daily driver experience.

I am not familiar with how other countries operate, but in the U.S., most people buy their phones through their carriers and just split the cost of the phone up into payments which are added to their monthly bill. This allows us to buy expensive phones without having to pay large upfront costs and most carriers offer very large incentives to switch or upgrade on a regular basis. Since we only see Android or iOS in these stores and without any kind of carrier backing, any new OS/hardware combo will have a serious challenge at gaining any kind of public attention.

Linux/Volla/Sailfish/Lineage etc. have the ability to offer what Android and Apple will not offer, and that is privacy. Creating a marketable product is the ultimate challenge which can only come to fruition when enough people become concerned about privacy.
PinePhone UBports CE and Mobian on SD, Mint Mobile, Pinebook Pro Manjaro
#7
I use Sailfish OS for quite some time now and can confirm that it´s great. It´s not just privacy, it´s also the fact that my ancient Jolla 1 still runs the newest SFOS version via OTA albeit not with the newest Kernel. That´s where the PinePhone really shines and were most others do not (the Librem is also great in this aspect): Due to it´s more or less open Hardware, it can run (as of now: close to) mainline Kernel thus being updateable infinitetely, until the Hardware dies. And it manages to do that without the usual premium associated with it.
#8
(08-25-2020, 09:19 AM)amosbatto Wrote: I created a table comparing the specs of 12 phones that can be bought with Linux preinstalled:

https://amosbbatto.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/comparing-linux-phones/


It is striking the difference between the amount of information that is publicly available for the PinePhone and Librem 5 compared to all the rest of the Linux phones that use Qualcomm Snapdragon and MediaTek Helio processors, which require NDA's to view their datasheets and don't allow the publication of schematics, because they are based on copyrighted reference designs.
Very nice! I did not know all of these options!
Thank you for doing this
#9
[quote pid='75768' dateline='1598563311']
Rather a cottage business, but I've seen this US youtuber advertising and selling used oneplus 1 and nexus 5 with ubuntu touch pre-installed:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYVU6rM...w/featured
[/quote]

Unfortunately, the Nexus 5 with UBports/Ubuntu Touch is out of stock at Rob Braxman's store. He does have a service where he will install Ubuntu Touch on your phone for a fee.


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