[Tinkerphones] Status GTA04A5 and miscellaneous

H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at goldelico.com
Tue Jul 26 12:34:03 CEST 2016


> Am 26.07.2016 um 12:21 schrieb Pavel Borecki <pavel.borecki at gmail.com>:
> Hi,
> thanks for update :)H. Nikolaus Schaller píše v Út 26. 07. 2016 v 11:20 +0200:
>> Hi,
>> there isn't much to report at the moment about the GTA04A5.
>> We are still waiting for all components to arrive and the PCBs
>> to be produced. Let's hope that no news is good news and
>> cross fingers that it happens soon.
>> On the software side we have published letux kernel 4.7.0:
>> 	http://download.goldelico.com/letux-kernel/letux-4.7/
>> It fixes the hdq driver so that we can again read the fuel gauge and
>> battery state of charge. This is essential to be able to measure
>> suspend current.
>> Unfortunately we are still struggling with the charging system.
>> The symptoms are quite puzzling. On some devices charging
>> seems to work. While on others it simply fails, does not recognize
>> cable insertion/unplugging and the ethernet gadget fails as well.
>> But installing our letux 4.3 kernel on the same SD card and rebooting
>> makes it work.
>> What the real mystery is: there is no significant code difference in
>> the charger driver between 4.3 and 4.4-rc (where it fails for the
>> first time). So the difference lies somewhere outside the charger
>> driver but we have not yet found where.
> What about new camera module - what are results of its tests?

So far we know that it responds on I2C bus. But we have not fixed the
video signals so that mplayer can display it on the screen. So we do
not exactly know the quality.

And for debugging the video parts of the kernel it would be nice to have
charging and ethernet gadget fixed (again) first...

It must be a small needle covered by a big haystack.

> I'm
> waiting with order to order board and camera module together at once
> (due money transfer fees).
>> What else can I report?
>> There was some discussion about a magnetic usb socket for the
>> GTA04 so that you can no longer pull the GTA04 from the table
>> through the USB cable and break the USB socket inside the GTA04.
>> For Micro-USB you can go shopping and find solutions, but not
>> for Mini-USB.
>> Therefore I have started to build a prototype for such a thing and
>> let's hope it works. Then we can build a handful of them (they also
>> work on GTA01/GTA02 and most Mini-USB devices). It consists
>> of two PCBs, one with a Mini-USB-Plug and pogo pins and the
>> other with contact pads and a Mini-USB-Socket. Both will be plugged
>> together with small magnets glued to the PCB.
> Well, another item to my order, eventually (cheaper than repairs of USB
> port - n900 owners could tell...)

Yes :)

Anyways the GTA04A5 uses a different Mini-USB socket as well which should
be almost impossible to break off.

>> As a bonus I have also designed such an adaptor for USB3. Let's
>> see if that works as well...
> It would be usefull for Pyra handheld too :)

Not exactly, since it uses Micro-USB and for Micro-USB there are cheap
solutions available from several suppliers. So it makes no sense to build
our own.

>> And another thing is in works: a tiny AM3358 based breakout
>> board which has the potential to become the core of a new low-end
>> tinkerphone... Or just a simple I/O controller (I2C, SPI, USB) with
>> full
>> Letux inside.
> How would posibly resulting phone compare with gta04a5, please?

Good question.

It is something we all have to discuss. I just mention that as a technical
possibility for the future (read as: in 2 years), but not a plan or clear concept
or decision what will be done.

Some issue is that the AM3358 is physically bigger than the DM3730
used in the GTA04 so it will not fit into the Openmoko Freerunner case.
And we have no experience with power management of that SoC...

So it needs a lot of thoughts before something tangible (and potentially
clumsy) starts to exist.


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