Purism Shares The Latest Librem 5 Smartphone Progress - Dev Kits Going Out Soon

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 15 October 2018 at 06:18 PM EDT. 12 Comments
Purism has shared the latest details on their efforts to deliver the open-source Linux Librem 5 smartphone to market in 2019.

Their latest software and hardware development highlights for this crowd-funded Linux smartphone includes:

- Purism's Librem 5 software images are still built against Debian Buster but can now work with their downstream PureOS distribution.

- They are currently targeting a (patched) Linux 4.18 kernel.

- A lot of work on the Phosh Wayland shell, including an initial app switcher and touch-based application switching support.

- GNOME Settings is being backported to the Librem 5.

- Various work on virtboard for the virtual keyboard support.

- A lot of work on Libhandy continues for helping GTK3 applications build responsive/converged user-interfaces for desktop and mobile.

- Fractal's end-to-end encryption now has the basic functionality in place.

On the hardware front, they said they hope to begin shipping the hardware development kits "very shortly". Most recently they have attributed issues to some components being lost in the mail and other problems. Originally they were expecting to ship these Librem 5 developer kits around June but then got delayed to August and further delays since. Now it's looking like hopefully in the weeks ahead (November?) they will finally ship the boards to their backers.

The company's latest plans are to have the Librem 5 smartphone beginning to ship in April which is still quite an ambitious timeline for this privacy-minded GNU/Linux smartphone project.

Their latest status bits were shared today on the Purism Blog for the details in full.
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