Talpadk’s Blog

January 1, 2011

GeeksPhone One

Filed under: Embedded — talpadk @ 5:08 pm
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Well my Freerunner does not seem to become my primary phone (again) any time soon.
And my old Nokia 6100 battery has seen better days, okay it is not as bad as a smart phone just yet.

So I could either keep the old N6100, buy a new low end feature phone or get a fancy smart phone.

Until recently I thought that I would end up buying a new feature phone.
But disappointment in the evolution of T9 (none) on dirt cheap phones and the continued desire for a computer in my pocket lead me back to smart phones.

So I ended up ordering a GeeksPhone One.

Just for completeness some pro/con thoughts about the alternatives.

Nokia N900

Pros:

  • Very cool hardware (it even got a hardware keyboard).
  • Runs a Debian based distribution.

Cons:

  • Quite expensive.
  • Nokia left me for dead with the Nokia 770 tablet (NO I will never forget this).
  • Closed source just like the Nokia 770 (I can’t build a firmware for it, see above).
  • Maemo 5 has a relative small user base.
  • Maemo 5 is dead? Long live MeeGo?

IPhone

Pros:

  • Good question… highest sex appeal perhaps?

Cons:

  • Steve (Apple) wants to decide how and for what I use the phone.
  • Oh, and it is expensive.

Android phones (HTC, Samsung, etc.)

Pros:

  • Decent to very nice hardware.
  • Large user base => lots of applications.

Cons:

  • “They” want the same control as Apple.
  • Not free and hacker friendly.
  • Can be quite expensive.

GeeksPhone ONE

Pros:

  • Decent hardware that includes a hardware keyboard.
  • Rather cheap, they had them on sale for €159 (out of stock right now).
  • No need to “root” the phone as it is not locked.
  • You can build new firmwares for them (rmcc has created quite a few new firmwares).
  • They encourages people to do so.
  • As it runs Android there should be a large selection of applications.

Cons:

  • Firmware contains closed binary blobs (as far as I know)
  • Currently only runs Android, no Debian, SHR or FSO yet.
  • Open schematics and chip documents would have been nice.
  • The community is VERY Spanish, “Google Translate” is really a useful tool here.
  • The “One” is soon to be replaced by two new models.
  • Why god, why did they have to write “GeeksPhõne” on the back of the unit?

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