Necunos Mobile: A New Open-Source Linux Phone With KDE Plasma Mobile
Most of those wanting an open-source, GNU/Linux-based smartphone have been looking forward to Purism's Librem 5 that will hopefully be shipping in 2019. But now a new option appears to be jumping on the scene: the Necunos Mobile developed by Necuno Solutions in cooperation with the KDE camp.
Necunos Mobile is a "truly open-source hardware platform" based on an NXP i.MX6 SoC. There will be closed-source firmware involved but it's reported that the firmware blobs will not have access to the main system memory.
The use of the i.MX6 SoC makes it slower than the Librem 5 that is going with the latest-gen i.MX8 design. But on the plus side, going with the i.MX6 makes availability and pricing easier along with better mainline Linux kernel support today, albeit slower. The slated specs on the Necunos Mobile are the i.MX6 Quad with four Cortex-A9 cores, Vivante graphics using the Etnaviv open-source driver stack, a 5.5-inch touchscreen, aluminum body, WiFi, "possibly" LTE cellular, and 3.5mm audio jacks. The screen resolution, storage, and RAM details are not yet reported.
As far as the software details, it's reported to use the Linux 4.14 LTS kernel and will be running KDE Plasma Mobile. However, other software details are also not public.
Necuno Solutions is a Finland-based company. As far as when they plan to ship the phone, it's "to be announced" as well as the pricing information.
So unfortunately hardware/software details on this open-source Linux smartphone are frustratingly light along with when the phone may ship and at what price point for this quad-core 32-bit ARM device. But the KDE camp has come out today to announce their collaboration on the project around Plasma Mobile. Necuno Solutions also sent out the basic press release about this partnership.