Purism's Librem 5 Developer Kits Finally Shipping, Linux Phone Price Going Up To $699

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 18 December 2018 at 05:00 PM EST. 21 Comments
After originally hoping to ship this past summer, Purism is announcing tonight that the Librem 5 Developer Kits are beginning to ship for those who pre-ordered these i.MX8 developer boards designed for bringing up their inaugural GNU/Linux smartphone.

Just in time for Christmas, Purism has revealed their developer kit hardware is ready to ship and is now being sent out with the i.MX8M-based hardware. But before getting too excited, it does sound like the developer kit support right now is a bit rough around the edges. From an embargoed news post they are making, "There is still a lot of work required to make the dev kit truly functional for Librem 5 development, so we need your assistance. The frenetic pace of development continues and it's astonishing how much we've accomplished in the two months since we've put the hardware together. But the path is still long and arduous."

Even with these challenges and the delayed developer kit availability, Purism still appears confident in being able to ship the Librem 5 smartphone around April of 2019 -- their original plan was for January until pushing out that time-frame a few months ago.

Purism also shared that while the Librem 5 phone is currently priced at $599 USD, after the new year that price will be raised to $699 USD in order to cover expenses with the phone's development and future engineering costs. The phone's target specifications remain at an i.MX8M SoC with Vivante graphics, 5.7-inch 720x1440 display, 802.11 a/b/g/n WiFi, SIMCom modem, ~32GB storage, and 2~3GB of RAM.

More information should be appearing on the Purism blog.
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