Openmoko

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Neo FreeRunner, an open source smart phone created by the Openmoko project.
For the mobile telephone operating system, see Openmoko Linux.

Openmoko is a project to create a family of open source mobile phones, including the hardware specification and the operating system.[1] The project was sponsored by Openmoko Inc.

The first sub-project is Openmoko Linux, a Linux-based operating system designed for mobile phones, built using free software.

The second sub-project is developing hardware devices on which Openmoko Linux runs. The first device released was the Neo 1973,[2][3] in 2007, which was followed up by the Neo FreeRunner on 25 June 2008.[4] On 2 April 2009, Openmoko suspended development of their third device, codenamed GTA03, to focus on the FreeRunner.[5][6] In 2010, development of the GTA03 was continued by Golden Delicious Computers under the new codename GTA04, which includes major hardware revision, and the first unit was shipped on 10 October 2011.[7] Unlike most other mobile phone platforms, these phones are designed to provide end users with the ability to modify the operating system and software stack. Other Openmoko-supported phones are also available.

History[edit]

Project Openmoko was announced the 7th November 2006[8] by its founders First International Computer (FIC).[9]

The Initial core team for Openmoko project included:

Etymology[edit]

The name Openmoko is an initialism for Open Mobile Kommunikations.[10]

The codename for the phone product series, GTA, is an abbreviation of "GSM-TI-AGPS" which indicates the main components of the phone.[11]

Software[edit]

Originally Openmoko Inc. developed its own operating system for the phones, which was called Openmoko Linux or Om. It uses the Linux kernel, together with a graphical user environment built using the X.Org Server. The OpenEmbedded build framework and opkg package system were used to create and maintain software packages. The initial version named Om 2007 used the GTK+ toolkit and the Matchbox window manager. Om 2008, which was released in August 2008, added support for the Qt toolkit and Enlightenment 17. Despite continuous improvements both of these versions did not reach a stable state. As a result, Openmoko started developing Om 2009, which had the goal of providing a stable environment based on the middleware from freesmartphone.org, a project that was financed by Openmoko. However, this version was not finished either, and in April 2009 Openmoko cancelled the development of software.

This task was taken over by a several efforts of the community. Several groups have created modified versions of the original software or ported other systems to work on the phones. Among others, the Openmoko phones now support Android, Debian, Gentoo, Qt Extended Improved, QtMoko, and SHR.

Openmoko Inc. based hardware[edit]

the Neo 1973, the first smartphone using the Openmoko software

Openmoko hardware aspires to the term open-source hardware although in various areas the availability of cell phone components and legal requirements prevent full conformance to this term.[citation needed]

As do many other vendors, Openmoko Inc., notoriously failed to meet the publicly announced hardware release dates, and postponed releases many times.

The first supported phone, the Neo 1973 GTA01 (version: Bv4), was distributed exclusively through openmoko.com from July 2007 to February 2008.

The second revision of hardware based on the GTA01 design is the Dash Express, an automotive navigation system. The Dash Express has a faster CPU (Samsung 2440) and Wi-Fi ability.

The third hardware platform, the Neo FreeRunner codenamed GTA02 is an improved version of the Neo 1973.

Neo 1973[edit]

Main article: Neo 1973

The Neo 1973 (codenamed GTA01) phone was a "developers only" release. This phone supports the 900 MHz, 1800 MHz and 1900 MHz GSM frequency bands. Many Linux and unix programs used on desktop and server platforms, including utilities and games, have been successfully run on the phone. In addition to Linux, the NetBSD, FreeBSD and L4 kernels have been adapted by users to run on the platform or are under development.

This hardware platform can be emulated in software with a high level of compatibility using a version of QEMU included in the Openmoko software suite.

Neo FreeRunner[edit]

Main article: Neo FreeRunner

The Neo FreeRunner (codenamed GTA02) is the new revision of the Neo 1973. The changes include a faster processor (clocked at 400 MHz), 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, two accelerometers and 3D graphics acceleration. It was released for the mass market on 25 June 2008.[4]

Dash Express[edit]

Main article: Dash Express

On 2 January 2008 the Dash Express, a GPS device, with hardware developed by Openmoko Inc. was announced running Openmoko Linux.[12] This device, initially codenamed the HXD8, seems to use little or none of the openmoko user-interface, simply using patches to the kernel developed by Openmoko Inc, and running an application from Dash Navigation on it to provide navigation and a user interface.

3D7K[edit]

There isn't a lot of reference material for what happened to the GTA03 (codename of 3D7K) outside of the consensus that it was beaten down by the recession and it had been said as cancelled on official site. Openmoko built 3 working prototypes which had the key features capacitive touchscreen and a unique fully transparent curved case.

WikiReader[edit]

The latest product from Openmoko Inc. was the WikiReader, a device to read Wikipedia articles offline.[13]

Golden Delicious based hardware[edit]

OpenMoko picked up a new partner, the German engineering firm "Golden Delicious Computers" they began producing the much anticipated GTA04.

The GTA04 comes with a respectably clocked 800 MHz Cortex-A8 ARM (1 GHz) processor. This open-source dynamo is also packing an 800 MHz C64x+ DSP (digital signal processor) core, and a 3D graphics accelerator.

With those processor specs and the 512MB RAM combined with 512MB NAND Flash and 32GB expandable microSDHC it makes a good run-up against the hardware specs of the iPhone 4 and 4s models.

A Design chart of the GTA04 can be viewed here.[14]

[15] [16]

Golden Delicious GTA04 board[edit]

Golden Delicious GTA04 board is designed to exchange the GTA02 board in the Neo FreeRunner housing - and the GTA01 board in the Neo 1973 housing. Golden Delicious GmbH of Munich, a mobile office solutions provider and vendor of upgraded Neo Freerunners, in September 2010 announced a project GTA04. This is release of the Openmoko Beagle Hybrid, a platform using the Beagle Board as a basis for developing and prototyping a next generation Openmoko phone.[17] The following month Golden Delicious stated their long term goal of bringing such a phone to market.[18] The new board GTA04 fits into the Neo Freerunner case and connects to the existing display and other components, is listed for preorder on the Golden Delicious website.[19] The first batch of GTA04A3 EA (early adopter) started shipment 10 October 2011.[20] Version GTA04A4 first batch started shipment 31 January 2012.[21] It is also possible to order a ready made phone called OpenPhoenux or GTA04 Complete.[22]

Hardware:

  • CPU: ARM Cortex A8 with 1000 MHz
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Interconnect: WiFi, WLAN, Bluetooth
  • WLAN: UMTS module with 3.75G (up to 14.4 MBit/s)
  • Sensors (Barometer, Compass, Gyroscope, Accelerometer)
  • GPS
  • USB OTG 2.0
  • connector for optional camera module
  • well documented building blocks so user allowed to write his own boot loaders and kernels.
  • View of assembled GTA04, in case.

GTA04 Board external links[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]