Librem 6 Look Ahead Wishlist

AFAIK, it’s still an issue. The “burn in reduction” mode simply decreases brightness after
5 minutes of inactivity. There are other “burn in reduction” techniques, but it isn’t really
a solution.

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What can I say? Your definition of a phone means little to others.

Thanks for hammering my point.


It may be. There’s a YouTube video by a guy named Bob Wulff who let his switch sit for 3600 hours before the screen burned in. Dunno the validity of this, but some news sites ran with it. Youtube Video if you’re interested.

i believe that the key here is to provide configuration and methods that make it less probable due to user behaviour or simply the UI design, like having the notifications always in the same area. 3600 hours is not bad for early LCD lifetimes either, as long as it is comparable its something to look into for using.

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Indeed, assuming of course that its even legit (and I don’t claim that it is, I haven’t looked into it).

My main wish is that the hardware is Free Software, RYF. That all.
We have a tons of trash ‘opensource/propietaries’ devices already.


Yes, the users are very different.
It is the job of the Librem 5 product owner to decide which target group to serve. Any direction would be perfectly legitimate. It only needs to be transparent so that the potential buyers know what they are getting.

As I mentioned in earlier posts:

  • I have never used MMS in my life.
  • I have a zero need for phone calls if video calls in apps like Telegram/Signal/Viber are working. Because a video call is 100 times better than a voice only call because your face expression and body language are part of the communication. Calls in such apps are encrypted. And I live in Europe and regular calls across borders could be quite expensive. It still costs extra to call from Poland to Germany for example. And there are countries outside of the EU for which it is very expensive to do a regular phone call.
  • And I only need SMS because some services require phone verification or offer SMS as an only 2FA option.

De facto I expect a notebook with an LTE module in the size of a smartphone.

On the contrary I see that for some users voice calls, MMS, and SMS are very important. Especially for users in the US that don’t do that many international calls as people in Europe. There are totally different target groups for the Librem 5.


When was the last time you did a regular phone call? Roaming fees were removed in the entirety of the EU in 2017… Hell, even some countries outside of the EU have hopped on that train, I was in Canada a few months ago and roaming was free there as well which surprised me. So essentially the only case you could potentially get a higher fee when calling from Poland to Germany would be if you did something incredibly stupid like having an SIM-card from a US provider and call with it from Poland to Germany.

I think you are mistaken how the tariffs work.
When you have a German SIM card and you go to Poland then you can call from Poland to Germany without extra charge and within Poland without an extra charge.
But if you call from Germany to Poland with a German SIM card while you are located in Germany, then you might get extra charges.

This is the current price list of T-Mobile.

As you can see, If I call from Germany to Germany then I would pay with T-Mobile prepaid either 0,09 Cent per Minute or 0 Cent per Minute (depending on tariff).
But if I want to call abroad, I would pay at least 0,22 Cents per Minute.
If I want to call to Ukraine or Turkey or Montenegro for example it would be 1,99 EUR per Minute.

It is similar situation with other operators.


Saying burn in reduction isn’t a solution, is like saying water resistance isn’t a solution for keeping things dry. Sure, nothing is waterproof given enough time and water, and sure no oled is burn in proof given enough time and usage…

That doesn’t mean that mitigations don’t have value and aren’t a valid solution for the lifetime of some products. Based on what I’ve seen with other oled screens these mitigations would almost certainly be sufficient for a phone in most usage patterns.

Certainly mitigations have value. But I think that there is a difference between “mitigations” and “solutions”. Will there be burn-in from use in the Librem 5 where icon + bar placement can be rigid?

Hristo: so in your top five are you saying you want support for apps like Viper so you can make video calls, free? I think the matrix protocol allows voice and video calling for free, not sure its implemented on the purism server though.

Matrix is a very huge compromise:

  1. I can’t force all of my contacts to use Matrix. Most people use WhatsApp, Viber, and Telegram. Some people use Signal. Over time I managed to get rid of WhatsApp to a huge extend. But getting rid of Viber and Telegram as well is not really feasible. Communication has 2 sides, not one.
  2. There are bridges for Matrix, but this already limits the functionality and as far as I know often limits voice and video calls. Text only would be sufficient for my WhatsApp needs, but for Viber and Telegram, I need voice and video.

What I definitely want on Librem 5 is that the front camera does sufficient job for video calls. As far as I know this is not the case at the moment. And without more automatic adjustments of the camera, I can’t imagine how video calls should work. Should I adjust the focus every time I move a little bit? Ridiculous.
The front camera should also be able to pass the video signal to Waydroid if the user wishes so.
By the way I accept recommendations for a USB webcam that works well with Librem 5 and is not made in China. This would allow me to start with video calls even before the Librem 5 software is fully ready.
And again, a USB webcam cries for a second USB port for the Librem 5, because I guess that if the Librem 5 supplies the energy for the USB webcam, this might drain the L5 battery very fast (maybe it could be also bad for the battery health). And without a second USB slot on the Librem 5, the user is again forced to carry around a USB hub and we end up again with the question “Why don’t you just buy a notebook if you carry power bank, webcam, keyboard, docking station and cables anyways?”.

For the video calls the ideal scenario would be that WhatsApp, Telegram, and Viber run flawlessly with audio and video calls in a virtual machine on the Librem 5.
Because these apps are not per se bad. They are bad because they can’t be trusted. But inside of a virtual machine, you don’t need to trust them a lot. The virtual machine can fake your location, can fake your sensor data, can make part of your contact list not visible for the app, can suppress access to microphone and camera when not in use. For that reason, the work on Waydroid is extremely exciting. And you do not really need Librem 5 Version 2 for this.
Flawless Waydroid with working front camera is a matter of software work that can be done with the current Librem 5 hardware.
For the hardware I would wish more energy efficient CPU and additional USB-C/HDMI.

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I think that depends quite a bit on what your threat model is. For example if you’re worried about meta using your Whatsapp meta data to target you with advertising I don’t think running it in a virtual machine makes much difference since they can still tie it back to your unique identifier (phone number).

  1. You can have WhatsApp in a VM that has a contact list with only the few particular contacts that you can only contact through WhatsApp. So in this way, WhatsApp is not getting access to your complete contact list. This sounds like a reasonable benefit to me.
  2. WhatsApp will not have access to real sensor data and location data. This is also a reasonable benefit to me.
  3. WhatsApp will not be able to use the smartphone resources in an unknow undeclared way. Why should I trust WhatsApp that it is only a messenger app? It might so some other stuff that I don’t want.
  4. You will be less susceptible to security vulnerabilities in Whatsapp that are found again and again. Check:

So yes, you might not be able to remain anonymous to Meta, but you will give to Meta less data on your contact list and less data on what you do and where you are and you will be safer. So to me it sounds very reasonable to sandbox WhatsApp in a virtual machine.

And even regarding the phone number, maybe it is feasible that the Virtual Machine communicates to WhatsApp different phone number and IMSI than the one that your Librem 5 uses. If this would be possible, this would allow you to do somewhat separation of the identities by using a separate sim card for the Whatsapp set up on a burner Android phone and leave the Whatsapp sim card in a drawer at home while using your Librem 5 with your main number which stays unknown to Meta.

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My wish is for:

  1. A faster more efficient (less power hungry) CPU
  2. More memory
  3. The upgrades on a mainboard that fits into the Librem 5 - everything is good enough* apart from the above on the Librem 5, so it would be great to be able to save having to buy an entirely new phone (cost, waste etc), especially considering I was originally wanting a fir phone, but delays and a broken phone meant I had to choose an evergreen batch phone.

*assuming software updates fix current issues (network disconnecting, camera, no network after suspend, little battery life, (graphical) composition issues)

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that is an excellent idea, to expand maybe even being able to upgrade the screen, wifi modem, or 4G modem as Purism comes out with or supports newer versions. I mean it could also be a service where you send it in for upgrade and pay an upgrade fee ontop of the hardware.


These are discrete, standard, removable modules. They can be upgraded by the customer. In theory.

Where theory could fall down is that
a) a new module has to actually exist
b) the new module has to have an open source Linux driver
c) the new module either doesn’t require firmware or the firmware is freely available and the customer is prepared to compromise on blob status
d) the new module has to physically fit (not too thick - the other 2 dimensions should be limited by the module standard specification itself)
e) there has to be software support (best case scenario is that the module is compatible with the application software and configuration for an earlier module so from a software point of view “it just works”)

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I saw this cool chart created by Jeff Martin that shows for all you UX/UI designers out there and phosh/phoc designers that the interactions that happen on a touchscreen should mostly happen within a height of 3in from the DEVICE bottom edge (not screen). This also points to two design choices that could maximize a touch screen’s device user friendlyness:

  1. as i already mentioned in my point 1. having a wider screen even up to a max of 6" could be benefitial since it is more easily navigatable and usable by one or two thumbs, e.g. one on the left and one on the right (as proven to work already by the switch console in ignoring controllers).
  2. any pinpads in L5 phosh, browser left right swipes, closing/minimizing/maximizing of apps, dismissing of notifications, opening of app drawer, switching of open apps, searching for app, sending new email, scrolling and answering sms, emails, chats, scrolling up down in terminal, should all be controllable within 3".

Unfortunately that means the old UX windows control philosophy of top right close, minimize, maximize, menues in top left corner should never be used as design elements for mobile apps, GTK4 and libadwaita Et.Al should probably switch all those menue items around 180 degree to the bottom of the screen (as Apple iOS finally has done on their Safari browser after 10years of using the Windows philosophy). Why repeat the same mistakes in Linux mobile?

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Well at least they gave it some thought. I am sometimes taken aback by when a small laptop screen has a browser login below the bottom of the screen and I have to scroll down to enter username and password. That tells me the company programmer (wherever it was, a bank, a biz, etc., had a 20 by 32 inch monitor to test with, and didn’t think about the customers.