2 Comments

Summary:

BURLINGAME, Calif. — Can the power of open source be harnessed into the form factor of a cellular phone? That’s the question Taiwan-based OpenMoko hopes to answer positively, when it starts to roll out its OpenMoko platform and phones later this year. We caught up, quite […]

BURLINGAME, Calif. — Can the power of open source be harnessed into the form factor of a cellular phone? That’s the question Taiwan-based OpenMoko hopes to answer positively, when it starts to roll out its OpenMoko platform and phones later this year.

We caught up, quite literally, with OpenMoko architect Sean Moss-Pultz, querying him as he walked briskly toward his ride after presenting at the O’Reilly ETel conference here Wednesday. Here’s a quick update on OpenMoko’s plans, and how open source may power mobile telephony.

Paul Kapustka: What does it mean to have an open source mobile phone?

Sean Moss-Pultz: It’s a really open phone, as open as you can get. Put whatever applications you want on it.

Paul Kapustka: What manufacturer will put it on their phones?

Sean Moss-Pultz: Well, our company, at first. [OpenMoko is part of First International Computer, FIC, a Taiwan manufacturer of motherboards and mobile phones, which plans to make OpenMoko available on its Neo1973 Smartphone.] But we also have 5 or 6 other deals pending, I can’t talk about those right now.

Paul Kapustka: Who will make money from an open source mobile phone? What kinds of applications will appear?

Sean Moss-Pultz: We are building ourselves the basic kinds of things you need in a phone — calendar, email, address book, etc. But we hope to attract developers, tap into the same kind of power of other open source projects.

Paul Kapustka: Will the OpenMoko phone be available in the U.S.?

Sean Moss-Pultz: We will be making units available soon to developers [Later in March, according to the company wiki]; for mass market, it’s probably like September.

  1. Yes, OpenMoko is great. One stop nearer to the Open mobile Economy. But not only people from Taiwan and the USA are involved, also from Berlin (Germany), where I live.

    One of the brains is our GnuMonk Harald Welte. The Mobiliser Blog knows more about it.

    Some months befor he was still Looking for Open Dream Device Makers. Then Harald told him about OpenMoko.

    Share
  2. Jesse Kopelman Friday, March 2, 2007

    The Neo1973 looks a lot more appealing to me than the Apple iPhone, especially considering the price.

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post