I should have never ordered the librem 5

In all these years I’ve been waiting for this phone, it must have been at least the 15th “expected” date. None of them have turned out to be accurate. The lack of availability of parts is of course no fault of purism, but the fact that they don´t even offer a regular refund for a device that’s 4(!) years too late is inexcusable. (telling people they’ll get a refund when their “place in the queue” has questionable at best).

There’s at least two sides to this:

  • On the one hand purism made some decisions that they shouldn’t have: could not get the parts, with no indication of availability, but instead of being up front about their inability to manufacture devices people have paid for they tell their customers their orders will be postponed. I think there’s nothing I can say about this that hasn’t already been said.

  • On the other hand, if it wasn’t for this somewhat misleading move, no one would have ever gotten a fully libre linux phone.

Since i do feel a necessity for such devices, i have strong opinions for both sides of the coin here.

All in all, because no one knows how many devices are sold, the previous update about a container of librem 5’s lined up for shipping was pretty meaningless to anyone wanting to know if they could expect their phone or not. The current update, again, does not list any concrete information regarding the availability of parts, just that “the cpu is available” again. And everyone just needs to hope there’s enough to fulfill the entire backlog.

in the first few months I was excited about every update i got, hoping that I would see the device any time soon, so that it would allow me early entry in to the market of adaptive linux applications. That plan didn’t work out, and for two years I’ve already felt that “i’ve waited too long to cancel it now”.

At some point I had enough, I asked for a refund. The first response was quick, but in it, i was told that a refund will only be submitted when my place in the queue has been reached (as mentioned above). When I asked about an estimate(which i think was a reasonable question to ask), my e-mail was flat-out ignored. twice! Now, after all this time, I know I’ll get a device that still doesn’t last a day on a battery, still has issues with basic calling functionality, still has overheating issues when charging and does not have a functional gps.
That’s been my experience with purism, a company that prides itself on having sold many devices for some time, and therefore has “experience” in manufacturing and distribution.

Personally I would not recommend anyone to ever buy something from purism for these reasons, I couldn’t do that in good conscience. Their goal however of building a fully libre phone is still great, the hardware itself is still best in class, I just wish things would have transpired a little more “professionally” so to say. But i guess it is what it is.


You aren’t alone. I requested a refund for an order (apparently in limbo) almost two months ago and have had exactly zero response from anyone at Purism except from my support contact (who has been a good communicator) despite repeated attempts to reach the right folks. He says he passed my request along, but no one has even had the courtesy to reply, let alone actually offer help.

It says a lot about a company producing a phone that contact numbers are not available anywhere on the site.


I ordered min Oct 2019 and last week got an email saying all back orders should be fulfilled by the end of 2022. You are on the home stretch now I think. Don’t give up!

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Sadly, I have heard these kind of assurances before. My “expected” ship date has shifted steadily backwards, so I cannot trust any of them I am hearing now. If I could get a commitment of a shipped unit or a guaranteed refund on or before a given date, I would be willing to wait. But I cannot even get any kind of response whatsoever from Purism.


I wish you were right. But I’m already dreading the day the battery dies. Purism says it won’t sell me a new battery because I’m overseas. Nor are there any reputable alternatives for a L5 battery.

My phone is essentially going to be a brick with near-zero resale value. (I know, it’s not Purism’s fault and I can still tether it to the wall or have it shipped to the US and back for repair. But I suppose few buyers are going to put up with that hassle.)


I see many batteries for sale on ebay for the Librem 5, more batteries than actual phones for sale there.

See this thread for a first-hand account of what you’re signing up for if you buy a L5 battery from a third-party seller.

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I purchased mine in May 2018 and I already have it. It arrived last month. I don’t know what your number in the queue is, but you’ve probably waited less than I have.


Already? Only 4+ years later? That’s amazing!


If you pay them a lot more for a “USA” version then you’ll get it straight away.

The lesson here should be: never pre-order anything and, especially, never again buy anything from Purism.


Pre-orders were done in 2017, I ordered somewhere in the beginning of 2019. That wasn’t a preorder, just a regular order :wink:

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I’ve been on home stretch for three years. There must have been like 10 people at least saying “it can’t be long now”.
One of them will be right one day, all the others haven’t :frowning:


They weren’t shipping then so all orders were pre-orders.


They weren’t shipping, but they should have been. You can argue that they still aren’t “shipping”, yet you wouldn’t call them pre-orders now, because at least some devices have been shipped.
At that time, some devices have been shipped, but backers had to find out later that they were only shipped to purism employees. After which they came up with the idea of batches iirc.

None of that matters, because when I ordered, in 2019, it specifically said “pre-order” on the order page.


Right, apparently shipping started Q3 2019. Looks like mine was a preorder, since I ordered shortly before that. The same still goes for anyone that ordered after Q3 2019. In this case there is no difference between those that did preorder, and those that did not it seems.
Agreed, last thing I ever buy from purism.

Mine arrived Friday! That’s 10 months since I said “Don’t give up”. :wink:

SO far I’m loving it.


What network are you using it on? I got mine a couple of months ago, but it remains unopened as I have Verizon as my service provider (it is the only carrier that has a signal where I work) and they will not support Librem phones.

I don’t think you were asking me, but just in case, I use Fido in Canada, worked without needing to make any changes.

I have to say I am thrilled with both the phone and the service. The WiFi wasn’t working, they fixed it. I just got it back and the device is awesome. Really loving it.


Mint Mobile works great on L5. $15/month for unlimited (1year prepaid).

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