[Community] New cell phone design wanted?

David Heath dheath.pr at gmail.com
Mon Jan 4 06:28:11 CET 2016


Open, secure, and accessible to non-programmers are my ideals. Good
hardware isolation is a popular topic but I don't quite know enough to
discuss it technically. I think the main considerations there are the
modem's access to system memory and system control over modem/microphone
power for privacy reasons (and possibly to reduce power consumption).
Compatibility with various OS distributions is important but I think
Replicant is a priority; hopefully they will be building in line with
Android 6.0 and can support Play Store apps with system based permissions
(correct me if I'm wrong about this). I think the Motorola Droid Turbo, the
original one, is a good design in terms of feature set-- very long battery
life, durable, and simple/logical controls. There are plenty of issues I
have with it but in terms of physical design, the main problems are that
it's slightly too big and the audio port is on top, which means you have to
put it in your pocket upside down if you are listening to music. If I were
designing a phone, I would start there and just update the hardware. Neo900
and the DragonBox Pyra are both products that I would be happy to buy if I
could. Pyra is not designed to be a phone but it certainly could be used as
one with a Bluetooth headset. I like the idea of a phone/laptop that I
could also plug into a hub and use as a desktop, I think Microsoft is
marketing that concept well with their new phones but I don't know the
specifics. With regards to radio implementation, general purpose
software-defined radio in a mobile device would be very useful for a number
of applications, such as signal balancing wireless access points or as a
portable oscilloscope using the TRRS port. Some governments might require
specialised licenser to legally operate this sort of device, I'm not sure,
but I for one would get the licenser if necessary. Physical keyboards are
nice but the layout is a matter of preference and I typically don't find
them to be entirely comfortable, it would be awesome if the keys could be
repositioned but this is almost certainly not practical. Can't comment on
the Neo900 and Pyra keyboards since I haven't tried them. I would very much
like to be able to boot computers off of my phone as removable media to
install operating systems or run technical utilities. This may already be
possible but I have not figured out how to do it yet, especially with a
multi-boot bootloader. Removable batteries are a big plus and hot-swappable
seems like a great idea. USB Type C connector looks good and 802.11ac
should be very useful. I have more comprehensive lists saved somewhere if
you want them but I think these are the most interesting hardware concepts.
Hope my dreams are useful to you (all). :)

On 3 January 2016 at 23:17, <community-request at openphoenux.org> wrote:

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> Today's Topics:
>
>    1. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (Andreas Kemnade)
>    2. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (Dr. Michael Lauer)
>    3. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (Kero)
>    4. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (James)
>    5. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (J.V. King)
>    6. Re: New cell phone design wanted? (Daniil Larionov)
>
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Message: 1
> Date: Sun, 03 Jan 2016 19:15:19 +0100
> From: Andreas Kemnade <andreas at kemnade.info>
> To: community at openphoenux.org
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <1451844919.10410.8.camel at kemnade.info>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-15"
>
> On Sun, 2016-01-03 at 02:57 +0000, James wrote:
> > Hello,
> >
> > I've designed all sorts of hardware and firmware over the decades. I have
> > always wanted to design a cell phone that can support multiple different
> > open source software stacks. I'd like to hear what features and the
> resources
> > folks would like to see in a new cell phone where all the hardware is
> > disclosed so open source codes, from a variety of places, can be
> completed
> > and supported by the open source communities.
> >
> >
> > So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> peripherals?)
> >
> I am looking for something in the form factor of the gta04/openmoko but
> with a display not requiring any backlight in bright sunlight. So it is
> good for outdoor use. I do not want millions of brilliant pixels which
> can be only seen with a backlight consuming excessive amount of power in
> sunlight. Then I would prefer like 300000 not so brilliant pixels which
> can be seen without much power like it was the case with old Compaq/HP
> Ipaq devices.
> That seems to also be a combination which seems not to be easily
> available on the market. The smartphones I have seen solve the sunlight
> problem by using excessive backlight brightness consuming vast amounts
> of power.
>
> Regards,
> Andreas
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 2
> Date: Sun, 3 Jan 2016 20:51:07 +0100
> From: "Dr. Michael Lauer" <mickey at vanille.de>
> To: OpenPhoenux Community <community at openphoenux.org>
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <0860BB04-9826-458C-84EC-7906E04639F1 at vanille.de>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
>
> > Am 03.01.2016 um 19:15 schrieb Andreas Kemnade <andreas at kemnade.info>:
> >
> > On Sun, 2016-01-03 at 02:57 +0000, James wrote:
> >> Hello,
> >>
> >> I've designed all sorts of hardware and firmware over the decades. I
> have
> >> always wanted to design a cell phone that can support multiple different
> >> open source software stacks. I'd like to hear what features and the
> resources
> >> folks would like to see in a new cell phone where all the hardware is
> >> disclosed so open source codes, from a variety of places, can be
> completed
> >> and supported by the open source communities.
> >>
> >>
> >> So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> peripherals?)
> >>
> > I am looking for something in the form factor of the gta04/openmoko but
> > with a display not requiring any backlight in bright sunlight. So it is
> > good for outdoor use. I do not want millions of brilliant pixels which
> > can be only seen with a backlight consuming excessive amount of power in
> > sunlight. Then I would prefer like 300000 not so brilliant pixels which
> > can be seen without much power like it was the case with old Compaq/HP
> > Ipaq devices.
> > That seems to also be a combination which seems not to be easily
> > available on the market. The smartphones I have seen solve the sunlight
> > problem by using excessive backlight brightness consuming vast amounts
> > of power.
>
> I?d love to have a hackable Linux-based (smart-)phone with an E-Ink display
> and a massive standby time, like, say, one week or so.
>
> Since I don?t need much of the classical smartphone apps, I would be
> content with it
> having more of a feature phone style UI on it though. I could even imagine
> FSO being a great middleware for such a thing.
>
> Cheers,
>
> :M:
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 3
> Date: Sun, 3 Jan 2016 21:38:39 +0100
> From: Kero <openphoenux at chmeee.org>
> To: community at openphoenux.org
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <20160103203839.GF13764 at chmeee.org>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
>
> > >> So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> peripherals?)
> > >>
> > > I am looking for something in the form factor of the gta04/openmoko but
> > > with a display not requiring any backlight in bright sunlight. So it is
> > > good for outdoor use. I do not want millions of brilliant pixels which
> > > can be only seen with a backlight consuming excessive amount of power
> in
> > > sunlight. Then I would prefer like 300000 not so brilliant pixels which
> > > can be seen without much power like it was the case with old Compaq/HP
> > > Ipaq devices.
> > > That seems to also be a combination which seems not to be easily
> > > available on the market. The smartphones I have seen solve the sunlight
> > > problem by using excessive backlight brightness consuming vast amounts
> > > of power.
> >
> > I?d love to have a hackable Linux-based (smart-)phone with an E-Ink
> display
> > and a massive standby time, like, say, one week or so.
> >
> > Since I don?t need much of the classical smartphone apps, I would be
> content with it
> > having more of a feature phone style UI on it though. I could even
> imagine
> > FSO being a great middleware for such a thing.
>
> Having the defining features from gta*/neo900 (openness, security) in a
> pluggable form factor, such as USB.
> It allows me to use it on a platform of my choice, which is still going to
> be some computer running linux.
>
> It would be a much smaller design, with fewer components to source.
> Hopefully easier to update, too (I'm a SW person, but I imagine this
> applies to HW, too).
>
> It needs some driver on the host to work when plugged into it, providing
> control and data interfaces.
>
> In response to the prev mail:
> I am interested in the features that smartphone apps provide, but not in
> the existing apps-ecosystems.
>
> Bye,
> Kero.
>
> --
> If travel is searching
> and home what's been found
>     Hunter - Homogenic - Bjork
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 4
> Date: Sun, 3 Jan 2016 22:56:53 +0000 (UTC)
> From: James <wireless at tampabay.rr.com>
> To: community at openphoenux.org
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <loom.20160103T231527-876 at post.gmane.org>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
>
> Kero <openphoenux at ...> writes:
>
>
> > > >> So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> peripherals?)
>
>
> Well, these replies do tell this commmunity is alive and desires some new
> toys to get excited about. So, if I may be bold, how does this sound to
> satisfy what I have parsed from the previous posts ???
>
> Hardware::
> multicore arm64, maui gpu, 4 gig of ram, micro-usb & usb3, wifi , audio
> i/0,
> Bluetooth, 5" touch screen, sim card socket, camera, gps, temp
>
>
> Software::
> hardened linux kernel [1], embedded gentoo linux os, lxqt, (this is what
> I'd
> do). Openrc (no systemd). SeLinux [2]. Fully encrypted device.
>
>
> As a gentoo device, it's pretty straight forward to install whatever
> software your want from portage, within the constraints of the resources.
> Just so you know, I have little interest in a low price. I'm interested in
> building a cell comm device that kicks ass, is secure and users
> control/modify it as they like. Have troubles with the stack, hire somebody
> or create what you want in the open. BSD style licenses as much as
> possible,
> i.e. entrepreneurs are most welcome!
>
> I'm interested in expanding the Rf interface capabilities (ham, CB etc)
> so that is still floating on the exact details. That may be an add on board
> that 'clips on the back; decided once I get the final list of hardware to
> support.
>
>
> What I need is a consensus. A rally cry, so I can go into board meetings
> with several semiconductor firms and pitch a revolutionary device for the
> secure entrepreneur to prosper. I am influential and have a long history of
> squeezing (chip) vendors:: so no worries on how to get this done. Besides,
> the current cell phone sales have stalled because nobody is building
> anything that excites folks. I have zero interest in building a sub $300
> cell phone, that is an exercise in futility, imho. I'm more interested in
> the 'big cannon' cell phone that folks will pay for to get one and become
> excited about writing and hacking software for it. Somebody else can focus
> on the low end (sorry if this offends anyone). Codes that invoke lincense
> issue will become user installable, via the gentoo package management
> system
> known as portage [3]
>
> So what did I miss on the hardware and software? (please leave emotion,
> guilt and other such issues out of the discussion) I just what input on the
> killer cell phone package (hardware and software) that folks want (like
> SElinux on an embedded linux cell device).
>
>
> [1] https://grsecurity.net/
>
> [2] http://selinuxproject.org
>
> [3] https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Portage
>
>
> James
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 5
> Date: Sun, 3 Jan 2016 20:45:24 -0500
> From: "J.V. King" <mensawasp at hotmail.com>
> To: OpenPhoenux Community <community at openphoenux.org>
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <BLU172-W30FF8AC787C2A02C2D2BC7AEF20 at phx.gbl>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
>
> Just have one (probably dumb) question.  Would it be any easier to run
> multiple Operating Systems on an Intel Processor, as opposed to an ARM
> Processor ?  I only ask because of the advent of Intel-based Smartphones
> since about 2012 now:
>
> http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/smartphones/smartphones.html
>
> > To: community at openphoenux.org
> > From: wireless at tampabay.rr.com
> > Date: Sun, 3 Jan 2016 02:57:27 +0000
> > Subject: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> >
> > Hello,
> >
> > I've designed all sorts of hardware and firmware over the decades. I have
> > always wanted to design a cell phone that can support multiple different
> > open source software stacks. I'd like to hear what features and the
> resources
> > folks would like to see in a new cell phone where all the hardware is
> > disclosed so open source codes, from a variety of places, can be
> completed
> > and supported by the open source communities.
> >
> >
> > So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> peripherals?)
> >
> >
> > I can build them in small batches and keep the prices down, but I'll not
> be
> > providing pcb layout details, but only the details to write/port code to
> the
> > devices. I am taking this approach to cover the cost of a few
> consultants I
> > need to add advanced feature like integrated Ham radio, and other Rf
> > features not found in standard phones......
> >
> >
> > hit me with your thoughts and ideas,
> >
> >
> > James
> >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Community mailing list
> > Community at openphoenux.org
> > http://lists.goldelico.com/mailman/listinfo.cgi/community
> > http://www.openphoenux.org
>
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> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 6
> Date: Mon, 4 Jan 2016 04:17:35 +0000
> From: Daniil Larionov <ScumCoder at yandex.ru>
> To: community at openphoenux.org
> Subject: Re: [Community] New cell phone design wanted?
> Message-ID: <uccxnv.o0eulc.2x6unh-qmf at smtp1m.mail.yandex.net>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
>
> Sounds like Neo900 on steroids. Or Purism: the Phone. Which is awesome.
>
> > Just so you know, I have little interest in a low price. I'm interested
> in
> > building a cell comm device that kicks ass, is secure and users
> > control/modify it as they like.
>
> Just wanted to ask what (estimated) price we are talking about. There is a
> certain threshold that no hardware can justify. For me the maximum price I
> can afford to spend on such phone is around 1200-1300 ?.
>
>
> On Mon Jan 4 01:56:53 2016 GMT+0300, James wrote:
> > Kero <openphoenux at ...> writes:
> >
> >
> > > > >> So what is your desired feature list? (processor, ram, flash,
> > peripherals?)
> >
> >
> > Well, these replies do tell this commmunity is alive and desires some new
> > toys to get excited about. So, if I may be bold, how does this sound to
> > satisfy what I have parsed from the previous posts ???
> >
> > Hardware::
> > multicore arm64, maui gpu, 4 gig of ram, micro-usb & usb3, wifi , audio
> i/0,
> > Bluetooth, 5" touch screen, sim card socket, camera, gps, temp
> >
> >
> > Software::
> > hardened linux kernel [1], embedded gentoo linux os, lxqt, (this is what
> I'd
> > do). Openrc (no systemd). SeLinux [2]. Fully encrypted device.
> >
> >
> > As a gentoo device, it's pretty straight forward to install whatever
> > software your want from portage, within the constraints of the resources.
> > Just so you know, I have little interest in a low price. I'm interested
> in
> > building a cell comm device that kicks ass, is secure and users
> > control/modify it as they like. Have troubles with the stack, hire
> somebody
> > or create what you want in the open. BSD style licenses as much as
> possible,
> > i.e. entrepreneurs are most welcome!
> >
> > I'm interested in expanding the Rf interface capabilities (ham, CB etc)
> > so that is still floating on the exact details. That may be an add on
> board
> > that 'clips on the back; decided once I get the final list of hardware to
> > support.
> >
> >
> > What I need is a consensus. A rally cry, so I can go into board meetings
> > with several semiconductor firms and pitch a revolutionary device for the
> > secure entrepreneur to prosper. I am influential and have a long history
> of
> > squeezing (chip) vendors:: so no worries on how to get this done.
> Besides,
> > the current cell phone sales have stalled because nobody is building
> > anything that excites folks. I have zero interest in building a sub $300
> > cell phone, that is an exercise in futility, imho. I'm more interested in
> > the 'big cannon' cell phone that folks will pay for to get one and become
> > excited about writing and hacking software for it. Somebody else can
> focus
> > on the low end (sorry if this offends anyone). Codes that invoke lincense
> > issue will become user installable, via the gentoo package management
> system
> > known as portage [3]
> >
> > So what did I miss on the hardware and software? (please leave emotion,
> > guilt and other such issues out of the discussion) I just what input on
> the
> > killer cell phone package (hardware and software) that folks want (like
> > SElinux on an embedded linux cell device).
> >
> >
> > [1] https://grsecurity.net/
> >
> > [2] http://selinuxproject.org
> >
> > [3] https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Portage
> >
> >
> > James
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Community mailing list
> > Community at openphoenux.org
> > http://lists.goldelico.com/mailman/listinfo.cgi/community
> > http://www.openphoenux.org
> >
>
> --
> Sent from my Jolla
>
> ------------------------------
>
> _______________________________________________
> Community mailing list
> Community at openphoenux.org
> http://lists.goldelico.com/mailman/listinfo.cgi/community
> http://www.openphoenux.org
>
> End of Community Digest, Vol 44, Issue 2
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