Especially when I’m traveling, I really have to have a phone that works. That means it has to have at a minimum all of the following features:
- Turns on and off
- Charges and battery has reasonable battery life.
- Make and receive calls.
- Send and receive SMS.
- Actually works with Verizon voice and data.
- Actually connects to wi-fi with no issues. Nothing terribly difficult about this (e.g., wi-fi passwords are securely saved).
- Fully functional browser like Brave or Firefox, can handle all HTTP and HTML stuff as a laptop would, doesn’t die if you try to load YouTube.
- Run email software and receive email via it.
- Working camera; video is almost required; usable software (e.g., a working photos repository).
- Run Telegram.
- Run Messenger (work insists; could be in a browser tho).
- Run Slack.
- Run Enpass or, if I must switch, some other password manager.
- Some way to play audiobooks…I guess I can export my audiobooks into another app, right?
Almost must-have features (I could do without these):
- Runs YouTube app.
- Run any reasonably decent GPS app.
- Netflix and Prime Video (via browser, anyway).
- Works with either Apple Watch or another health watch.
- Some way to play music. I guess it could be kind of lame not to be able to play music in my car, since the car won’t be able to talk to the phone, right?
I know that there’s nothing close to a 100% guarantee that the thing will even turn on or ever be shipped. But here’s the real question: what is the chance that it will actually be a regular, useable, working phone? Is anyone who is buying the thing expecting it to work as such a phone? Or is it pretty much people who are so into privacy, Linux, and Linux mobile coding (!) that it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t really work?
I care enough about privacy that I’m willing to take a chance, but if we know there’s little realistic chance of it working like a real phone this year, I wouldn’t spend the money. But if there were, say, a 75% chance of all of the above items being delivered by April, then I might risk the wrath of my wife and just spend the money.