Question about specs - how would they compare to my current phone?


#1

My current phone is a Nokia Lumia 920. It’s a Windows Phone 8 phone (I know…), and I’m very much looking forward to replacing it with a Linux alternative. However, I wish to know how the Librem 5 specs would compare, and how much of an upgrade it would be.

The Nokia Lumia 920 specs are (according to Wikipedia):

  • SoC: Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM8960
  • CPU: 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Krait
  • GPU: Qualcomm Adreno 225
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • Storage: 32 GB internal flash
  • Battery: Rechargeable BP-4GW 2000 mAh Lithium polymer battery.
  • Display: 4.5" IPS LCD, 1280x768 at 332 ppi, 16.7M colours, 60 Hz, 15:9.

I know nothing about phone specs. So while I can easily understand how the Librem 5’s 3 GBs of RAM would compare to the current 1 GB that I have now, I have absolutely no idea about the CPU, GPU, SoC, battery, display, etc.

My current phone is 7 years old, so naturally I would expect quite a significant upgrade. However, I understand that the Librem 5 might not be completely up-to-date in terms of performance due to some of the decisions made to protect privacy. So I’m just wondering how much of an upgrade there will actually be.

Any thoughts? Thanks.


#2

hello ! https://puri.sm/products/librem-5/

ok so the most noticeable visual aspect of the librem 5 smartphone fos device is that the display will be larger than what you currently have listed above (it will be 5.7 inches diagonal. and the battery is user replaceable with tools but it is not hot-swapable like pull-out-put-back-in-seconds.

but the most important part is that it is freedom respecting and runs gnu/linux pureos (based on debian testing) . that alone will ensure a long life-time and significantly less performance degradation over time compared to other Apple, Microsoft, Google etc devices that don’t respect a persons digital freedom > https://puri.st/ and https://puri.sm/posts/what-is-pureos-and-how-is-it-built/

so to make this short - the device specifications are not the main forte of the librem 5 but it will certainly be at least as capable as your current listed device - even better maybe (3gb ram) and it will have a 3.5 mm audio/mic jack for iems and aux.

here are some more links for you to get a better idea of what the librem 5 and puri.sm is all about. there is a whole lot more to learn if you are so inclined.

https://puri.sm/news/

hope you will benefit from this knowledge at least if you decide that it’s not for you.

it can also run vim https://www.vim.org/about.php


#3

We don’t know the final spec so we can’t make prediction.
You have to wait for the delivery of the first batch to have a relevant answer.

But, if your main concern is spec and not to support Purism and GNOME, better consider buying an unlocked mainstream smartphone supported by UBports or PostmarketOS communities.


#4

Thanks for the replies. I absolutely do want a GNOME-based phone with kill switches and such. That’s the main reason why I’m interested in the Librem 5. But that doesn’t mean I don’t care about the specs at all - I still want to know how much of an upgrade it’ll be in terms of specs. I’m just trying to get a feel for what to expect in terms of performance and display.

The final specs might not be known yet, but how about the currently known information, with the i.MX 8M processor, the Vivante GPU, and so on? Is there no information about how these components perform, or how they would compare to my current phone?


#5

How would you like to make comparison?
Even the devkit doesn’t use this processor and it will not run Android with java app but GNOME + debian with C or python app.

You can compare SoCs’ technical doc if you want but that won’t tell you anything about the user experience.


#6

I’m pretty sure that the hardware (CPU, RAM, storage) surpasses what you have, speaking of theoretical performance. The i.MX 8M is a quadcore with 1.5 GHz.
Probably the GPU is also better, because as you said, this one is seven years younger.
The main question that is currently open, is whether it will be the mini variant of said CPU, which is less capable but more energy efficient.

In theory, everybody with a dev-board (with i.MX 8M) could already give you good summary of how powerful it will be, but that is of course very tricky. It depends a lot on how optimized the drivers and applications are, and this has most likely more influence than i.MX 8M vs. i.MX 8M mini.

So, as said, I’m pretty sure it will be better, but maybe graphics performance will need tuning. And whether this will take weeks, months or years… who knows :wink:


#7

I looked into this a little while ago in another topic, comparing it to a Raspberry Pi 3B+ (see How powerful is the Librem 5, and how could I make games for it?)

CPU:
Nokia 920: 2x Qualcomm Krait cores running at 1.5 GHz, which get a rating of 3.4 DMIPS/MHz (according to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_ARMv7-A_cores)
Librem 5: 2 or 4x Cortex-A53 cores (depending on whether we get an i.MX8M dual or quad), also running at 1.5 GHz and which have a DMIPS/MHz rating of 2.24 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_ARMv8-A_cores).

This appears to be about 0.75x the per-core speed of the Nokia 920 and is actually quite interesting, as the two wikipedia entries I checked actually rate the older ARMv7-A cores as faster on an instructions-per-clock basis than the newer ARMv8 architecture.

EDIT: duh, got the numbers backwards.

(no, I don’t know how comparable this DMIPS/MHz number is, but it’s the first appropriate-looking thing I could find on the wiki)

Graphics:
Nokia 920: Adreno 225 = 0.8 GPixel/sec
Librem 5: Vivante GC7000Lite = 3.2 GPixel/sec (4x better)


#8

the thing is alot of people get excited about linux mobile devices because they are a novelty and a fresh take on this whole mobile compute universe but we kind of get our wind snuffed out when we find out it’s not a real x86 device but more arm64. whatever it’s still gnu + linux and another step toward convergeance. even if you decide to hold off on the librem 5 maybe you’ll rest a little easier knowing that some people in this world work so that one day you and i can one day hold in out hands freedom respecting devices and not just mass surveilance IOTs.


#9

Have you been with Windows phones since WP8 initially was released or did you start with the Lumia 920? I ask because the more fair comparison here might be to the first WP8 devices. The specs aren’t going to be as good as other devices on the market but the experience will likely be smoother due to fewer options (apps/features) initially available.

Where I expect things to diverge, is many things are being ported over to the Librem that never actually made it to Windows phones even at Windows 10 mobile. This is a double edged sword as I don’t expect as many defaults, at least initially, to protect you from yourself on Librem; since the philosophy is very much freedom to do what you want. Which means there will almost certainly be a time of “poor performance due to poor user choices”. This can either be solved by user education or by defaults that protect the uneducated that will get turned off because “well my friend said …” And again poor performance for poor choices.

There is a hard to define line between “what I want” and “what I think I want” and while many would say the OS/Device should never decide for me; having the defaults be deciding for the user is what the majority of users need until they learn more. Also many people don’t want to learn more they just want convenience, which is how we got Google to where it is today.

TLDR: my expectation is the initial release will likely be a comparable experience to when Windows phone first launched, but likely with growing pains more similar to Android (without the spying).