The future looks grim. What smartphone am I supposed to have in the coming years? Even if my current one never breaks beyond repair, at a certain points all the apps I need will have become too slow or even incompatible. Personally, I can’t just use a 10 year-old version of my favourite web browser, messaging app, or the likes, and I need at least the basic freedom of having root privileges.

And by the way, this doesn’t only apply to smartphones, the situation has far worse implications. The PC transition from x86 to ARM will happen, slowly but it will happen. ARM has countless benefits which I advocate for, but the fact that it is a customizable architecture (there are countless ARM chip producers, every one of them making chips that are incompatible with competitor ones), mixed with the fact that OEMs don’t have to release sources for their SoC-specific blobs, is a recipe for the disaster of closed platforms.

You will be stuck using Windows on your shiny ARM “PC” with locked UEFI bootloader (and even if those remain unlocked, someone will have to spend time and effort to port other OSes to each specific computer, like you see today on smartphones with custom ROMs) and you WILL be happy. Unless you want to spend an high price on some low-end hardware sold by companies that unfortunately, to survive with selling open hardware, have to come to this compromise.

How about the PinePhone or another device supported by PostmarketOS?

The PinePhone is probably the only one I could ever buy, because all the other ones (unless there’s some new out there) are too costly, both phones that come without Android, and Android phones for which the community ported Linux (no one ports good ROMs for cheap phones).

But, at that point, since the experience isn’t really that smooth for a smartphone (never tried it, but the majority of people who did say so), might as will just build myself an UMPC with a cheap Linux SBC, and also have perks like a built-in phisical keyboard. Then I would just use a featurephone for calling, SMS, taking pictures, and WiFi hotspot for my UMPC.

yes but there are finally some open hardware devices coming around

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A place to discuss privacy and freedom in the digital world.

Privacy has become a very important issue in modern society, with companies and governments constantly abusing their power, more and more people are waking up to the importance of digital privacy.

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