Librem 5 concern


Why would the shop page state that the original shipping date was meant to be January?

About 300 dev kits have been sold (which you could have picked up in the timeline), and as producing a batch of these is expensive, this was a one time thing (also in the timeline, even in the titles). On the very bottom of the timeline, there is a guy who made some non-10-second videos of his experiece with that. Btw, I don’t get your 10 sec problem. I want to see that it works. I don’t want to binge-watch a calc-app… Also, a lot of things are still rough, so expect the better stuff closer to launch. That’s only natural.


Wish obi wan kenobi could just show up and tell him “these aren’t the androids you’re looking for”

2 points and I’ll stop feeding the troll.

  1. It’s linux, you got an issue with the software, write your own apps
  2. If you don’t troll Apple or Samsung then maybe that’s a better choice in phone for you

You’re kind of showing up late to the party, then complaining how this party isn’t like all your other parties. Maybe it’s best to just stick with what you have or start your own company because it seems you have a lot of opinions on how this should be more like everything else that already exists.


Also, before you bash me for not reading the time line I’d like to point you to a few things first:

  1. The company website is trying to get me to purchase the phone and tells me that it is releasing Q3 2019.

  2. There are no links I see anywhere on the website for this time line you sent so how is a lay person to find this information?

  3. I clicked the links for updates and such and it just a list of a few videos that I’ve already looked at but no mention for time lines. So before you give people a hard time you should make sure the info is easily obtainable.


When was the last time Samsung or Apple gave you updates on their development? You obviously have no interest in purchasing, so why are you still here?


And there it is, you don’t like the conversation so call me a Troll. It is what got me started here to begin with and yes I’m late to the party. The problem is the company is trying to get people to purchase a phone to be released between now and Sept according to purchase page but it isn’t actually releasing then. It has no link to any time lines and no real info about what is actually going on. So I claim it is misleading at best.

I’m also not complaining about any party, only commenting that I think the party is claiming to be a lot better than it really is and the price to admission is high considering what you’re getting. It is ok for people to complain without being a Troll. Unless you just can’t handle it in which case you should move on not me.

Anyway, we have entirely bashed this subject so will move on since there really isn’t much to see here. I do truly wish you guys the best and would love to have one of these phones to try out. Just not entirely trusting what is going on here at the moment.


lol, small minded people. Throw insults to defend yourself. What do either of those companies have to do with this conversation? And I absolutely have an interest in purchasing right up until you piss me off being stupid. Asking questions and being critical is not the sign of a Troll or disinterest. You most definitely are young and brain washed from too much college… :slight_smile:


about the calculator app pre-demo posted on youtube.
wait till you see gnu/emacs on the L5.
yes you can use it as a calculator too without requiring a dedicated calc-app. i also like using on the desktop/laptop the-replacement-software “speedcrunch(qt)” instead of “gnome-calculator”. it’s got some pretty nice stuff inside. ctrl+n to clear.


Personally I find this approach to device development refreshing. They are taking in way more feedback and ideas (including those expressed here) that any other company would. This is not a standard product launch, to say the least and @cybercrypt13 you are right on about that. It will be interesting to watch and a wild ride for those building this. I applaud their efforts and have great hopes for it. It can’t fail because whatever happens it has pushed security and issues with closed source devices closer to the main stream.
I have a Librem13/v3 and know v1 and v2 were probably not as good as v3 and I am thankful for those who purchased and them and helped get to v3 and v4. This is more investment than purchase in my view.


Have you used kickstarter, indigogo, put money down on a game before release, etc (the myriad of example could go on ad nauseam). Similar concept. Do sometimes those dates need to get shifted, yes. They give the best available data they can to you and as in life you are allowed to make a choice. There is no force to buy in.

Do you show up outside of concerts and complain about cost to everyone? Maybe show up a one of Apple’s directors meetings and complain about price of admission, I’m sure they will spend far less time listening to your opinions.

And if you don’t trust, don’t buy. And simply wait it out.

But you do troll when you bash the apps with out understanding, bash the company and SPCs without knowledge, etc. Where’s your non-stop vitriol towards Google, Apple, or Samsung. Do you spend your days critiquing them on their boards about how their company’s only purpose is to serve stock holders, steal data for profit, etc.


Blockquote What do either of those companies have to do with this conversation?

Because one of those are most likely what you use and have used their OSes and hardware to complain about this project.

Blockquote I absolutely have an interest in purchasing right up until you piss me off being stupid.

Interesting one person on the internet can have so much power over your decision making.


this is like a talk to the hand situation and it is an unfortunate effect of transparent development in crowdfunded free-software/open-hardware projects.


I partially agree with you. In the old days we rather called that flaming (seems that has a different meaning now).
I also agree that some of the original comments were too critical.

However, on your side, you could have helped a lot by asking questions instead of asserting things that are not true, and then jumping to conclusions based on these wrong assertions. It’s not wrong to be late to the party and to not know stuff, but then don’t assume to know better than those who made the party happen. :sunglasses:

:+1: :+1: :+1: :+1: :+1:
This is the absolutely most valid thing you pointed out so far.

Myself and many other very involved people here have pointed that out repeatedly to Purism, from the very beginning of the campaign almost two years ago. It was a bit different then, now there is plenty of information, it’s just not really easy to dig up, especially for the new kid in town.

At the very bottom (bad) of the shop page, there is a tiny text link to (supposedly all) blog posts on the topic. But then, somebody decided to use different tags for some of the (new) topics, so it’s not really helpful, let alone the catastrophic navigation in the blog section.
Actually, that was one reason for creating the timeline.
This is the kind of page I would expect to be linked very prominently on the shop page, so that people who want the background can have it. I hope Purism will consider something like that (@david.boddie) :sunglasses:. Maybe they’ll improve on it, closer to launch.

On the other hand, would it really have changed anything for you personally? You just let me know you don’t have the time to even skim over the headlines there, which is amazing, as so far you spend already a few hours reading and writing here.


you can just press “ctr+F” in the forums then “/” or “ctrl+F” (firefox) no need to skim and just at a glance see if there is something you are interested in. we need a tutorial on how to time manage properly on forums i guess.


Originally you said:

I was hoping you would watch this video:

Obviously you did not. It is not as simple as deleting applications off a phone when the phone’s OS is designed to track everything you do.

You’ve asked me to:

but wont listen to reason and ignore points yet go on to talk about things entirely unrelated to my retort to your post.


I didn’t think I’d get used to a 16GB iPhone, but I did. My music files exceed that, so I’ve been periodically swapping the music files on my phone. Since the Librem 5 has a microSD slot, I won’t have to do that anymore. I’m super-excited for the Librem 5. Even if I don’t ever do it, I like having the option of installing a different OS on my phone just like I do on my home computer. I’m a tinkerer.


The only realistic options for Purism in 2017 when they started this project were the Allwinner A64 (but not the A80), Intel Atom, nVidia Tegra, Qualcomm Snapdragon and NXP i.MX 6 and 8. Of those options, Purism made the best possible choice in my opinion, if the goal is to run 100% free software without binary blobs in the Linux kernel.

Even then, Purism took the harder path by running the Wi-Fi through SDIO and the cellular modem over an M.2 connection (probably via USB), rather than loading proprietary drivers into the kernel. Figuring out how to move the binary blob to a separate flash chip and then train the LPDDRAM4 with the M4 core during bootup, took some real engineering. Purism can’t just ask NXP for a reference design for a phone, since the i.MX 8 wasn’t designed for phones, and figuring out how to design everything with KiCad and other free software when there are much better proprietary tools takes real dedication, and putting it on a public server with a GPL 3 licence is frankly amazing.

Purism could have just made a Snapdragon phone like everyone else, but they chose the hard path and those of us who understand the technical challenges they face are applauding them. I have worked in both hardware and software development, and I can tell you that Purism undertook a monumental challenge with the Librem 5, which is why I think anyone who complains about the delays doesn’t know the first thing about programming or hardware design.

If Purism didn’t care about user digital rights, privacy, security and free software, it could have just taken a Snapdragon reference design and stuck Linux/Wayland/Weston/KDE Plasma Mobile on it and called it day, but they chose the hardest possible path.

Let me give you an example. The i.MX 8M Quad is a new chip, and its camera functions have not yet been documented by NXP. I see engineers in the NXP forum complaining that they can’t figure out how to implement it, since all they have is one implementation provided by NXP for an OmniVision 5MP image sensor. They are looking at the registers used by that example implementation and trying to figure it out from that. It has two MIPI CSI-2 4-lane interfaces, so it can support 4x1.5 Gbit/s, so a high resolution camera should be possible, but if the Purism engineers can’t figure out how to implement anything better than the OmniVision 5MP camera for the first release of the Librem 5, I’m going to be disappointed, but I’m still going to applaud the company for its heroic efforts.

What Purism has demonstrated in its 5 years of existence is that it doesn’t give up and it has kept working doggedly to achieve its Freedom Roadmap. I don’t expect the first Librem 5 to be perfect, especially the first production batch, but I will still give the company my money because a company that cares enough about the ideals of the Free Software Foundation to undertake a project like the Librem 5 is frankly a gem.

I can’t think of another company that would hire Coreboot engineers to make it possible to produce a new laptop which runs on Coreboot. I can’t think of another company that sells laptops which have disabled the Intel ME. I can’t think of another company which has created a legal charter saying that it will release its schematics.

Purism had demonstrated its ethics and its commitment to free software over the last 5 years. Its employees could make much better salaries working at other companies, but they chose low pay and long work hours to work at Purism. Watch this interview with CEO Todd Weaver:

Now do you honestly think that Purism is just like Google and Apple?

In the Purism code tracker, you will find:

  1. Chatty (SMS+XMPP),
  2. forks of GNOME Contacts and KDE’s kpeoplevcard,
  3. Web (fork of Epiphany),
  4. a fork of TinyMail
    And Purism had committed to use GNOME Calendar, so we know that Purism is already planning on providing 5 of the 8 apps that you mentioned. With libhandy and a little work on existing GTK+ software, a notes and photo viewer app won’t be hard. It won’t be that hard to add a GTK+ interface to replace the KDE interface used by plasma-camera or just import the KDE libraries and use plasma-camera.

We already have that. The i.MX 8 is already in the Linux kernel, and many of the code commits were done by NXP engineers. This the reason why Purism made the best choice choosing the i.MX 8M because NXP is a good Linux company. Even if Purism goes bankrupt, we can count on years of kernel support.

The i.MX 8M only started production in January 2018 and NXP is committed to producing it till January 2028 (that is the benefit of producing for the auto market). The i.MX 8 mini at 14nm just started production, so the Librem 5 has a clear upgrade path for version 2.


I frankly don’t understand where OP is coming from.

I do understand wanting an affordable phone that can run every app you want and already use, that supports all the latest technologies. We already have those in iOS and Android ecosystems. So 99.99% of people can just do that. They’re free to choose, just like anyone else.

I haven’t seen anyone yet claim that a Librem 5 is going to compete with a flagship device from other companies. Or that a reason to buy one is for superior performance and specs. Everything I have read is quite realistic and you’re free to read any of the preliminary specs for yourself. When the phone is shipped, you will presumably be able to read the full specs and reviews for yourself.

I don’t understand comparing a small newcomer like Purism with decades-old established giants in the market. Neither from a price perspective nor a features perspective. The giants can make deals and take losses in ways you just can’t expect from a small company where every dollar goes to keep the lights on, feed the employees, and develop the products.

I understand that the smartphone market is extremely competitive and constantly trying to outdo one another with the latest greatest bells and whistles. Meanwhile it’s a race to the bottom on the low end. Yes, my cheap 2-year-old Samsung will outperform any open source phone out there and it’s not even close. Perhaps in that context and with those expectations, the Librem 5 will seem like a disappointment to many.

Here’s the thing. I feel like supporting this project and this company ultimately comes down to supporting an idea. The idea that we should know how our devices work and what is running on them, and be able to change any of it, freely, without waiting for someone else to “hack” into them for us (in fact my cheap Samsung still has NO root available, so it’s impossible to install a different OS, even if I wanted)

Similar to the Raspberry Pi. Buying one of those isn’t getting the cheapest or fastest possible hardware. It’s supporting the foundation and the ideas they represent. Lowcost or free computers for everyone built around open software. Sure there are hundreds of cheap Asian clones with higher specs and no ideals whatsoever. And once again you are free to choose them over an RPi if you similarly have no ideals.

It’s not even about supporting Purism the company, they are only a vehicle for an idea. Just like GNU and FSF are only a vehicle for the idea of FOSS. If I don’t agree with everything Richard Stallman says, that doesn’t mean I boycott GNU, there is far too much to benefit from there. The company might even fail, but the idea can live on, it only needs people to support it. So you can choose to support an imperfect vehicle for a noble idea, or gloat over every imperfection you find.

Simple as that. It moves us one step closer to the vision of fully liberated hardware and software. We can never get there if we simply give up before trying, and that’s what a few people seem to be missing.

On the other hand, what are you really supporting if you buy Android or iPhone devices? In some abstract sense you could argue that you’re supporting their platform, both the hardware and software, that you trust it and it works well for you. But realistically they aren’t going to make decisions in response to what you or I think. It’s only going to come down to profit and their arbitrary visions for the product.

When Google dictates Android will do XYZ, then that is how it will be, and you truly have zero choice in the matter, except to not use Android or not upgrade. When Apple dictates iOS will do XYZ, then that is what happens, and you have no choice in the matter, except to not use iOS or not upgrade. You can’t just patch it and revert a change, or fix something that annoys you, or experiment with something new, because it’s all locked down. You do as your told and get what you’re given, and they expect you to be happy about it.

I haven’t even mentioned privacy concerns.

Some have pointed out that there may still be proprietary firmware in the Librem 5. This is true, but it’s also true that most GNU/Linux devices also rely on proprietary firmware. Yet this is not an argument anyone uses against Linux in favor of Windows or Macos. Because you are comparing apples and oranges: mostly closed OSes vs almost entirely open OSes.

Why is a phone different?

As far as I know, there is no modern open source baseband in existence. So we’re fundamentally blocked there. If anyone knows an example, please provide a link, and then we can discuss why the Librem 5 doesn’t use it, and critique Purism on that front. Otherwise I don’t see this is a valid criticism. They are no more closed than anyone else in one aspect, and more open in the remaining aspects. This should be celebrated as a triumph.

I fully realize that I am essentially paying a premium if I buy a first edition Librem 5, that there is no guarantee that it will ever run Android apps, that it doesn’t have the latest features, and that it won’t perform as well as cheaper phones. But I love the feeling of having control over my devices. To the greatest extent possible.

Maybe it will only ever be a niche product and closed platforms will continue to dominate in the future. That doesn’t prevent me from using my phone, finding ways to make it work, and showing it to others, so they can see that, wow there are alternatives out there to the big tech companies and proprietary devices!


Pudding is what you make of it.

Guess what? I’m going to take you at your word. That means I’ll have to try harder to understand you and what makes you tick.

Fine. State law applies. Because of the restrictions placed in the articles of corporation, I suspect that the company will be less appealing to a corporate raider. It’s not impossible, though. If a hypothetical buyer wanted to do Google-style evil, they would have to amend the articles. I don’t know how hard that would be.

They could fork and their customers could abandon them, true enough. I just think it is less likely with this company than you seem to. As for people putting unsecured apps on the phone, that is of course true and self-defeating. However, it is all about choice, even the choice to be stupid. Besides, even if Joe Blow does put stupid, unsecured apps on his LIbrem 5, it doesn’t make mine any less secure. In fact, if it helps to sell the phones to foster free hardware/software, I’m all for the idiots doing it. Maybe they can even be turned to the light at a later time.

I honestly haven’t noticed it here. Maybe some have, but if so I have clearly tuned them out and consider it lost intelligence below the noise floor of the conversation. Completely not worth wasting time on.

That’s just it – they don’t care if others take their ideas and run with them. In this case, it really is a feature, not a bug!

Closed source is not necessarily a bad thing, but by definition it cannot ever be as good as FOSS/FLOSS/free/libre software can be. I want to actually own the software (and hardware) that I use. Licensing, whether by private companies or by governments, is a very bad thing.

Hugs are nice, but should be a choice, not a requirement – especially if enforced by Jerry Brown’s “suede and secret police” (see the Dead Kennedys, California Uber Alles).

I do have a job and my wife has two small businesses. Do we give it all away? Why, no – we’d have nothing to live on if we did, right? Do we give some of it away? Yes. Choice, choice, CHOICE

Oh, look – we’re in violent agreement regarding Google! They can say Maps is free all they want, but the cost is too high. When Google, or the government, comes to my door and says, “Have this free stuff”, I always say, “No, thank you. I can’t afford your ‘free’ stuff.”

OSM and one of its many clients will eventually produce a reasonable analog to Google Maps. For now, I use my Auto Club maps. or my bound copy of Thomas’ Guide, in conjunction with the GPS navigator in my 2007 Ford. Ford no longer publishes map updates, and when they did, it cost hundred$. If I was retired, I just might try to dissect their DVD write a filter to use OSM data to create a Ford update DVD. When an OSM client gets “good enough”, I’ll use it on my Librem 5. It doesn’t have to be a feature match for GM, just better than what I choose to use now. “Better” must include not calling home and offline navigation.

Again, the “pudding” is what you make it. The L5 doesn’t need to be perfect, just better than my Galaxy S3. The L5 is better hardware for sure, and I expect it to be better software, even if not when it ships. I’m good with that. My investment isn’t just for a new phone/OS/apps or for a feature-for-feature compete with Samsung/Apple, it’s in the whole free hardware/software ecosystem. Gotta have some skin in the game, and $599 seemed like a bargain to me. If Purism crashes and burns, others will build on the source and eventually succeed.


closed software is not a bad thing

if you only use it for private business - that has nothing to do with the public - then it’s not a bad thing.
if you plan on distributing/selling it to the public or it will run on any kind of infrastructure that interacts with the public or serves the public then it is VERY BAD no matter what the application/industry get’s to use it. in short it’s EVIL from a moral standpoint because you refuse to give the public TRUST ASSURANCE.
it’s like children going to school but the school refusing to show Parents their grades in order to “protect their investment”.

Open software generally speaking is no where close to accomplishing what you can do in a closed software environment

this has nothing to do with ethics. it refers to the state-of-the-art in software RND and pertains to design/engineering not ethics or philosophy.

because no matter how much you guys want to believe

and here it is. the EMPIRE and THE REBEL ALIANCE.

society’s only problem is that we don’t hug enough

actually we don’t hug enough but we do have to learn WHO to hug.

it takes money to do EVERYTHING

the free-software/open-hardware philosophy clearly states that the word “free” is to be taken as “libre” or as-refering-to-the-4-software-freedoms

Each one of you have a job I hope

ah you hope …

and I doubt seriously

don’t doubt BELIEVE.

that you take any of your money and give it away to everyone else so they all have a better life.

since when JUST having money is an equivalent to a better life ?

i will stop here and not pick on any other of your sentences because this will quickly get out of hand.


Thanks for the thoughtful response and I really do hope they pull this off because I think it will be totally bad ass. My only issue, other than some people here going sideways was that the main (give me money page) on their site doesn’t list any of these details and still states that the phone will be shipping next quarter. I do understand all the technical hurdles and like I said, they have a ton of work left to do. I hope they do hold off on releasing the phone until it is ready because releasing it like they are stating on their site would kill its chances in my opinion.

Thanks again,