Librem 5 review

Yes, but at the moment just work for Phone Mode due for lack native gles3.0 acceleration and framework for Librem 5.
I hope Purism integrate a Mobile Chamber Vapour heat sink for Librem 5 FIR.


There are a lot of privacy respecting apps available to run on GrapheneOS. See f-droid for a good starting list F-Droid - Wikipedia .

If one installs Termux from f-droid, it has a long list (1000 or so?) of command line based Linux packages (including ssh, sed, awk, grep, tmux, rsync, python (with many modules), ruby, javascript C, Rust, and Go compilers, bash, zsh, apache2 …).

And, apparently, from Termux you can even do a proot install of several different Linux distros ( PRoot - Termux Wiki ; although any application that requires real privileges will not work). I haven’t done it yet, but it does look interesting.


Why are you trying to push the fault to the “people in your area”. The US is big and it is a fact that OSM is pretty poor in regard to street addresses as well as location searching.

Not in my experience. I use and other map services based on its data almost daily to look up addresses and have a very high (higher than 95%, for sure) success rate. I may just know how to do this, I bet Google Maps is more foolproof these days (spelling correction etc.), but still. Maybe area was the wrong term, if it affects the entire US — I am neither a native speaker nor do I live in North America. And regarding “blaming” people: Yes, I fix errors I come across when I am somewhere. You better be on the ground when fixing map errors. It’s not a strict necessity, as long as good satellite imagery is available, but still. If locals don’t care, a public resource like OpenStreetMap won’t ever improve. It’s somewhat similar to Wikipedia, it thrives with contribution and withers without.


Where did they say that it is Purism’s fault?

I got to assuming that by reading

What did we pay for makes me wonder and how that product did pass through QA or did it?


whoever did spatial on that open source product did very very bad job. Application unusable
Missing addresses for whole cities in US, layers messed up, every problem imaginable is there. Verdict if you want to get lost or be very off that’s the formula for getting there.

Is GPS operation on the Librem 5 great? Nope, but it can work.
Is shitting on FOSS projects fair? IMHO: Nope.
Did I over-react? Probably yes.
Sorry for that.


Not counting early revisions which indeed had poor GNSS reception, it’s pretty much on par with similar single-band receivers (which were still quite common in mobile phones at the time of Librem 5’s introduction) as long as you get almanac and ephemeris data up-to-date, which unlike on many other phones isn’t automatically pulled from the Internet here (but can be done manually).

What’s not great is non-GNSS location estimation, made even worse by recent MLS shutdown. You can reconfigure Geoclue to use Google for that, which will make it work pretty well, but then it will be using Google :upside_down_face:


I just used OSM to look up three different addresses in/near major US cities (two different states). In two out of the three cases it did a poor job. Specifically, in one case (my home address), it narrowed it down to about a 1/2 mile along the correct road. In another case (a business I had recently looked up) it claimed to find the correct address, but was incorrect by … about 1/2 a mile (the road was correct – what’s strange is that it is a grid road where each crossstreet should provide an address range and that was ignored)!!! In both of the bad cases it labeled the source as “tiger” ( Key🐯* - OpenStreetMap Wiki ).

It’s “better than nothing” but I certainly wouldn’t say that I would trust it. Small sample, but 33% success rate. No spelling errors or typos.

That’s fine that you fix errors. It is not fine to blame people for not being involved. Remember that the OP was simply reviewing the Librem 5’s mapping. They stated their opinion and, IMO, that opinion was justified.

Aside: Somebody locally actually added an error in OSM near me once (changing an unnamed private spur road to the name of a nearby street). I tried to correct it. I was required to create an identifiable login and the interface was horrendous and confusing IMO. That was about 10 years ago.

Bad assumption IMO. They are reviewing a product. Are they angry? Clearly yes. They are simply pointing out issues that are, in their opinion, unacceptable.

Don’t you see that as a problem?

On my phone I get an initial position within a few seconds. It also seems very efficient for subsequent updates … useful for keeping GPS tracks with a 2-second [time] query interval.

1 Like

Should it work out of box? It should. I worked on AGNSS right before Purism has cut its development budget and integrating it to work automatically in PureOS would have been the next thing to do back then, so it’s obviously considered important.

Is it a huge problem for me as a user? Hardly, I just trigger it when I need fast GPS and it works. It used to be pretty much unreliable before I figured AGNSS out, now it’s just mildly inconvenient at worst.

Same here.


I hope that isn’t going to be the default in the future. Might have some customers with pitch forks if people found out that Librem 5’s were submitting user location to Google every 5 seconds in some future iteration (in a manner similar to how they do for MLS right now).

I appreciate that it’s GNOME’s fault and not Purism’s, but it’s still creepy.

Having a device that only downloads stuff from the internet when the user tells it to download stuff from the internet has a special place in society. Like Amish people, it might be good for the world, even though many people believe all that matters is “whether the device works” and not how (and thus don’t care about their personal privacy).


3 posts were merged into an existing topic: Random GNSS enquiry

@dos can you, or someone else, point me to a complete howto what I have to install, configure and download (almanac, …) to get OSM and Maps working fine.

I tested sudo ./ and this gives me (with clear sky) a Fix within 2-3 minutes or less.


I’d like to help Purism to improve L5 but I’m not tech expert! How can I support them? Just financially (giving them other money) or?
Please let me know!
Thank you :pray:


Ordering their products, such as the Lapdock Kit, donations, and/or subscriptions:

Otherwise, here are other ways to contribute to Purism in general:


So you’re saying that it’s a software problem and not a hardware problem. That’s interesting.

It’s still a problem and I would say that in terms of a review of the product, complaints about GPS and maps are relevant because that is the current user experience. Most users are talking about a fix taking them a minute or more. I hike a lot and that sort of delay would be … unusable.


I wouldn’t say there’s a “problem” at all, as that implies something going wrong - it’s just that it still needs to be implemented. GNSS on L5 works just as expected when it has to download satellite positions from the sky, which can take several minutes as that’s just how systems like GPS have always worked. If you want faster cold fixes, you download that data from the Internet instead - and usually phones do that automatically behind the user’s back. Currently on PureOS, you either have to do that manually (getting TTFFs counted in seconds) or wait for it to get downloaded from the sky (getting TTFFs counted in minutes if you don’t happen to have recent enough data already cached).

Older devices (pre- had actual hardware issues that harmed signal-to-noise so much that downloading data from the sky could be hard or even impossible, especially in unfavorable weather conditions or urban canyons. Early Evergreens (1.0.2 and 1.0.3) can be capricious when it comes to GNSS, but I’m still using a 1.0.2 device as my daily driver and it has navigated me across unfamiliar cities just fine many times, it just needs some additional care to let it work at its best (like blanking the screen or lowering display backlight during first fix acquisition to minimize power supply noise, or keeping it stationary while it looks for signals from satellites).


Expert-Tier-Subscription is the best option to support Librem 5 and Purism.
Support Genuine Free Software Purism Programmers like: Mohammed Sadiq


7 posts were split to a new topic: Random GNSS enquiry