Price of phone is so high :(

You have fair point and a good analogy. And I believe I may be biased as you’ve said. However, following your analogy, the L5 is like erikli su while I’ve been drinking tampered beer but that drink does the work even if it destroys me but at it’s current state, what I need from a phone isn’t met with erikli. I feel the best way I can explain what I think is that I like the device and generally the company (refering to their ethics of user data). However, I do not fully believe this will be successful as a mobile phone. I really hope the version after evergreen has far superior specs than this and the price doesn’t explode even higher. As you said, these people do deserve to get paid but do I also not deserve to get a reasonably priced product. I do see that as a bit selfish on my side of the arguement but I can’t pretend this phone will last me a very long time or perform well as a phone in that time. I know a phone is hard to make while keeping to FSF compliance but this is somewhat dissapointing. To be able to afford this phone, I will have to be very cautious with my money and save up for about 7 or 8 months as I have other important events in my life coming up which will make me shell out a large portion of money. I know I can’t fully be unbiased about what I say as I am me but I still hope this device succeeds and other companies join to be just like purism to give competition and make the purism team stride higher and further but I am not sure if I will be there.

It is hard to make a phone which is both repairable and has water resistance. It can be done with rubber gaskets around every join and screws with lock washers to keep a tight join, however doing that makes the phone a bit thicker, heavier and more expensive, and visible screws in the case are considered ugly.

It is much easier to make a water resistant phone that has an unopenable case sealed with glue, but those phones are very difficult to repair because you need a heat gun and suction cups and you have to replace the seals every time that you open the case.

It comes down to probabilities. There is a 100% probability that the battery will start losing its charge capacity after roughly 500 recharge cycle. I have thrown away phones because I moved to places that used different cellular bands and there will be a lot of new LTE TDD bands in the future, but with the Librem 5, it is possible to just replace the cellular baseband, so you don’t have to throw away the phone. There is some probability that you need to replace the screen, battery or cellular baseband at some point, so you have to balance that with the probability that you will drop your phone in water.

By the way, Purism says that it will try to sell replacement parts (but it isn’t guaranteeing it at this point), so there is a decent chance that you will able to replace the motherboard if the phone gets dropped in water.

I think that you should read my blog post where I explain why the Librem 5 has been so much more expensive to develop than the PinePhone:

(It’s at the bottom of the article.)

There simply is no way to pay 15 (now over 20) developers to work 2.5 years on a phone that will only sell 10k copies without charging a high price. PinePhone was able to do it because it used a bunch of old hardware that was already well supported in Linux, it is willing to use binary blobs, it had already debugged the basic design in its Pine A64 board, and it outsourced the software development to external communities.

Purism could have given us a cheaper Linux phone by doing the following things:

  1. Using the existing KDE Plasma Mobile, instead of developing Phoc, Phosh, libhandy to build an new interface in the GTK + GNOME ecosystem. However, this would have meant switching the PureOS desktop to use KDE or giving up the goal of having convergence between the phone and desktop.
  2. Using an integrated SoC. This would have reduced from 4 chips that are 1450 mm2 in size to one chip that is roughly 150 mm2 in size, but you would have to give up the hardware kill switches and the goal of using 100% free software.
  3. Using binary blobs or using an old SoC. Given the goal of using 100% free software, the only available options in August 2017 were the i.MX 6 or the future i.MX 8M. All the other available processors at the time required binary blobs to display graphics, since Lima and Freedreno had not yet been added to Mesa. Most of the major problems that the Librem 5 now faces were caused by the fact that it chose to use a new SoC, that didn’t yet have good drivers in mainline Linux and it wasn’t well documented. If Purism had chosen the i.MX 6 Quad, it wouldn’t have its current problems with overheating, power management, video over USB and the cameras, and it wouldn’t have to pay Guido Gunther to hack the Linux drivers.

The question is whether you want to buy a phone that makes any of those compromises? If not, then you need to accept that you are going to pay a high price for the phone, because there is very limited demand.

The only way to get around this problem is to find investors that are willing to pour millions into the company and willing to accept losses for several years, but most big investors won’t invest in a company like Purism, especially with its SPC charter. Given that Motorola, Nokia, Intel, Samsung, Canonical and the Mozilla Foundation all failed trying to produce Linux mobile devices in the past, most investors are going to avoid investing in Purism.


yeah … especially if it runs modern GNU/Linux on open-hardware for mobile use OUT-OF-THE-BOX which spearheads active official development for the FIRST TIME IN HISTORY on this platform …


if the payment they demand is a fair monetary compensation then 100% they DO deserve it … and people who are able AND willing to provide that monetary compensation should NOT do it out of community pressure but out of their own GOOD WILL …

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convince proprietary software to no be so proprietary :grimacing:

Totally disagree. Not everyone needs to think the way you (or FOSS in general) do regarding software.

The solution is for more programmers to ascribe to this thinking.

The problem has never been getting enough users. People happily take what can be had for free.

Are you referring to me because I’m a bit cpnfused.

Also, becuase I’m a bit dumb, I don’t really understand what you just said so can you elaborate please. Sorry

I’m saying that proprietary software is not evil or bad and that it has its place. And I was responding to Rec’s post.

When a comment is directly after another post and does not have an avatar linking to a different post, it is always a response to the previous post.

Is it high really?
Top two phones I see there say $1299 and $1099… (not sure what that site looks like outside the US).

Isn’t the reason other phones (from other carriers) are “cheap” due to the fact that they’re subsidized (2/3 year contract carrier-lock-in) or the cost is distributed over a multi-year loan when not in contract? I realize the hardware on the L5 isn’t on the high end as these Samsung and other newer phone models, but even the final L5 price isn’t near some of those “real” prices that are over $1000.

And those $1000+ phones don’t come with kill switches, or the other improved security design measures. I think I paid $800 or something like that for my current (3-4 year old) Samsung (didn’t want to support that stupid contract vendor lock-in business model).

Not saying the cost isn’t a lot to pay up front, but the “real” cost seems to be pretty reasonable to me? Maybe Purism needs a multi-year financing option like T-Mobile does (if they don’t already have one).


I don’t have to deal with whatever yearly payment thing your on. I just buy a phone simple as. Monthly payment scheme no contract for my sim card that isn’t locked or comes with a phone or something. Obviously some phones are simply overkill and cost over 1000 USD like phones with 12GB of RAM (like actually just why) and very heavy processors. The price of this phone isn’t lux but definately is high end but the hardware ie mid range at best. If there was an option like monthly payment scheme for the phone, I might take it but probably not as I’m not sure if the phobe will last the payment period and, as another person said, there haven’t even really been plans set out for purism to sell replacement parts for the L5 which is very depressing as some of the most scum companies at least do this.

I’m not in any of your communities (because I’m not a computer person) but from what I’ve observed the community pressure seems to be not to buy the librem 5. I don’t think anybody bought this phone because of community pressure.

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:slight_smile: i better step up my game then :wink:

i meant be a part of the community that already has the dev-kit or one of the Aspen, Birch, Chestnut or will receive one or more L5s in the future … you are a computer person if you like gnu/linux :slight_smile:


Nya, I just don’t like being told what to do :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Ah, I don’t think there’s much pressure to buy from people here either :slight_smile: It’s not like it was with the edge and, quite honestly, I think people randomly come here expecting that sort of behaviour(?). Anyhow, we’re generally people who value Freedom and altruism so why wouldn’t that translate to respecting peoples consumer choices :slight_smile:


mimetic behavior is considered by many to be a form of flattery … if developers/manufacturers and gnu/linux users see that their ethical products are being appreciated and encouraged through adoption and best practices then they are in-turn encouraged to keep up the good work … beeing told what to do is not always a bad thing as long as you can see what it is your sticking your head into … :sunny:

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Me and you are alot alike ya know hahaha Sometimes it is to my detriment I dont follow directions . But ya know what ? I’ll gladly take that L just so I can do what I want instead of what I was told to do . Haha


The CPU performance on Librem 5 is comparable to a Snapdragon 425 or 427 (see these phones), but the GPU and RAM performance is a little better.

The Librem 5 should have the longest software support of any phone that you can buy today, including the iPhone and Fairphone which offer 5 years of software updates, because NXP will be manufacturing the SoC until January 2028 and NXP is contributing to the mainline Linux drivers, plus Purism says it will provide “lifetime support”. Considering that the Linux kernel still supports the 486, and many distros still support 586/Pentium I, the Librem 5 and PinePhone are the best phones that you can buy in terms of longevity.

Very few phone makers sell replacement parts. As far as I know, only Fairphone, SHIFT and PINE64 do. Motorola sells some parts through iFixit in Europe and North America. For all the rest, you are relying on sellers on eBay and Alibaba and you have no idea if you are getting parts from the original manufacturer or not, so it is often better to buy used parts taken off old phones.

Purism’s CTO, Nicole Faerber, promised:

Roughly 60% of phone repairs are replacing the screen and 20% are replacing the battery, and those parts aren’t hard to source, since there are many suppliers. The problem is the assembled logic boards, because it is expensive to do small production runs and there is no guarantee that all the chip companies will still be producing the same chips in the future. Fairphone had so many problems getting replacement parts for the Fairphone 1, that it decided to simply produce extra parts for the Fairphone 2 during the initial production and store them to sell later as replacement parts, but this is a risky outlay of money for a business, because there is no guarantee that the parts will ever be sold.

In summary, you should be able to buy replacement batteries and the screen + case, which represent 80% of likely repairs. Given the economics of providing replacement logic boards, I’m less hopeful, because Purism is already over budget on this project and can’t afford to spend extra on parts it may never sell. However, the probability that you will need to replace a logic board is low (as long as you don’t drop your phone in water).


See that’s the thing. I feel that I will drop the phone into water eventually. Not as ib inside a pool or sea for x amoint of minutes at deep depths but I don’t want my phone to die from a small spill and then also not even to have a chance to self repair it. Also, like all companies, I do not think purism includes water damage inside their warranty so I don’t think my phone will survive even past a year. There isn’t even an IP rating so I’m not sure if the phone is water resistant enough to avoid damage from something so normal like the rain. Yes most repairs are battery and screen but it would have been nice to have other parts too though I understand from the financial side now and will have to resort to a third party seller who would sell me terrible parts that wouldn’t work correctly or throw my phone away. Also, I thought companies like samsung had an authorised distributor for their parts as I had watcheda video from Louis Rossman and he showed a website for genuine parts given by samsung to the third party. I couldn’t find the vvideo again but it should be there still as I doubt he would have taken it down. I understand the software support will be long but that,doesn’t really matter if the hardware can’t survive a spill of water.

Also, the phones you linked to still seemed very poor for standards I would expect for the price of the L5 but as long as it can handle basic games like minesweeper and open my applications fast, boot quick I don’t really care. What concerns me is the price the product is for the hardware. It just doesn’t really make sense to me how it can be that expensive for what they are manufacturing. If you could refer a link to a discussion on why it is so difficult to manufacture, I could understand better. I understand if it is because of the software updating but it still seems high even then as when they release their next model, the software for that phone will be backwards compatible so they will clearly save 100’s from dividing their devs and getting more devs so it seems somewhat unfair.

Here you go, for starters CTO’s presentation:

This thread: Breaking Ground – Purism
And: Understandig the giant task Purism has achieved
Plus: Librem 5 — Development Chronology

(Edit, about waterproofing: