Purism Announces Librem Server While Also Announcing Price Hikes On The Librem 5

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 17 December 2019 at 12:28 PM EST. 28 Comments
If Purism didn't already have their hands full enough in working on the Librem 5 to make a fully functional Linux smartphone, the company announced today a forthcoming price hike for the device while also announcing their expansion into the server space...

First up, they say on 1 January will be a price increase in the device going from $699 to $749 USD while when hitting the Evergreen batch it will be $799 USD. That's going to even be more to swallow for those after a Linux smartphone considering the 5.7-inch 720 x 1440, i.MX8M, 3GB RAM, 32GB eMMC, 802.11n and other basic specs. Hopefully by the time those price hikes kick in at the start of the year they'll have call functionality working (it sounds like they are almost there) but there still is the large hurdle of improving the battery life beyond the approximate one hour time they have right now as well as enabling other functionality like camera support.

While they have been struggling to get their hardware and software out on time, they seem to be spreading themselves even thinner in an effort to raise capital by announcing the Librem Server. They announced the Librem Server as something that has "already been successfully in use by established business customers for the past year that serve important clients such as Boeing, GE, NASA and Toyota. Now, the company is opening up the product to general availability." Though those claims could not be independently verified yet.

Of the Librem Server they say no proprietary firmware thanks to using Pureboot as their spin of Coreboot, boot security verification, and customizable enterprise support. These 1U servers start at $2,699 for Intel Xeon Broadwell era processors. The older Broadwell CPUs are being used in order to achieve the Coreboot support. No word on the server OEM manufacturing these "Librem Server" but basically it doesn't appear to offer much besides shipping a Coreboot/Pureboot-enabled server platform in the range of $2,699 to $5,999 USD. Lead times on shipping these Librem Servers are said to be two to three weeks.

For those concerned about open-source and transparent servers down to the microcode/firmware, we would certainly recommend Raptor Computing Systems' POWER9 Talos II as the most libre hardware out there and no hidden blobs.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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