14 Dec 2010

Smartphones

Not really that keen on smartphones at the moment for a number of reasons.  Generally, when it comes to mobile technology, I'm a late-adopter.  Another reason is that, considering I'm on a computer at work, and have one at home, I'm not altogether concerned that the bits in between are filled with internet.

Another reason is that I would quite like a hackable (if not completely) free software phone.  And these do not really exist as such as things stand.  A few years ago, there was a lot of development of the OpenMoko Freerunner, however its still at a stage where you have to be really dedicated to its innards and coding.  I'm not there yet.

Google's Android runs on a modified version of the linux kernel, however its difficult to choose one which does not include proprietary firmware (as hardware manufacturers have not made this available).

In exciting news, there is now a new project called Replicant, which is a libre distribution of Android.  In addition to the OS itself, they also wish to compete with Google's Market for 'apps' (I hate that word) with a free (in price and freedom) repository of software.  If it ends up working, I might even invest in a Replicant phone.  Of course, it may not.

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