Tablets in the near future?

I’m curious if Prism is considering tablets in the near future now that the L5 has been established. Seems like it could be done with little hardware modifications. Basically a packaging issue.


Somewhere in this forum you will find discussion about the pros and cons of the assertion that you are making here.

My guess would be … things are never that simple.

I too have an interest in this question (“tablet?”) but then I would like them to get the L5 out the door first!

Purism was actually working on a tablet before they were working on the phone. They never got the volume of pre-orders they really needed, though, and I also think various vendors kept increasing the minimum order quantity on them.

Purism decided to put the tablet on hold in order to focus on the phone. They have said in various forum posts that they want to return to the tablet once the phone is more mature. So indeed, I think all the work done for the phone will now make the tablet easier, but I wouldn’t expect the tablet until late 2021, and more likely, 2022 at the earliest.

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Maybe it would be easier for Purism to build a tablet which is only a screen and a battery which you could dock a Librem 5 to?


True, nothing is as easy as it appears. I was over generalizing. The touch screeen will need to be sourced and the associated drivers/chips etc. The hardware would probably need to be largely reconfigured.

I’d love to see a Linux tablet. But yes, the the phone 1st.

There are advantages and disadvantages.


Disadvantage: if you are not an L5 customer then you can’t be a Purism tablet customer
(more generally, maybe you can dock something else but if you don’t have that something else then you can’t be a Purism tablet customer)

Advantage: The whole cellular modem nightmare goes away.

Speaking to my own situation (but could apply to others), this wouldn’t be very attractive. I already own a portable (has rechargeable battery) touchscreen monitor - and it is likely cheaper for me to buy one of those than something from Purism. With such limited functionality in the “tablet” (no CPU, no radio, no camera, no mic), there is less scope for “privacy fail” - so what’s the selling point for Purism?

(Yes, I’m sure a sophisticated attacker can produce a dumb monitor that is in fact a spying device but that might be a hard sell. The TV attacks that I have heard about involve smart TVs, at the very least with network capability, and probably with camera and/or mic capability.)

johan-bjareholt: That would be a great idea. But it would have to be inexpensive for Purism to produce given that they’re restricted to current L5 users like Kieran said.
Not really as profitable.

Sure it does not have a selling point regarding free software or privacy, but it does have a selling point that it’s a first party accessory which is build specifically for that product.

A portable touchscreen monitor is very different as then it would be connected with a cable rather than being docked. This makes it much less portable and makes it seem as two connected devices rather than appear to be a single device.

But yes, there would have to be significant volume for something like this to sell which would be hard. Personally though I would never buy a separate tablet as that would likely be much more expensive as that’s a complete device at which point it’s not worth the money, but yes you are right that it would be limited to the amount of Librem 5’s sold which is also hard. On the other hand the R&D cost of a “dumb” tablet which docks with a Librem 5 would be significantly lower, so a smaller volume would possibly be enough to be profitable.

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