WikiReader has more than 3m WikiPedia entries
Openmoko on Tuesday began shipping its WikiReader, a portable device that aims to bring Wikipedia offline. It contains over three million Wikipedia articles in English and doesn't connect to the Internet to get the information, instead storing the Wikipedia database on a microSD card and gets free, quarterly updates from the Wikipedia website. The device uses a monochrome touchscreen for navigation, which includes an on-screen keyboard and support for the site's well-known hotlinks.
FreeRunner project dies
The Linux-based FreeRunner phone is no more, according to OpenMoko's executive director. Sean Moss-Pulz made the announcement at this week's OpenExpo in Switzerland, saying that focus will be redirected towards a non-smartphone device, being developed under the codename Plan B. Simultaneously affected are half of the company's workers, whose are losing their jobs so that OpenMoko can survive as a company.
OpenMoko's recently mentioned Android phone is effectively the company's Neo FreeRunner with a different operating system, the company has confirmed. Instead of a custom-built but basic Linux distribution, the GTA02 uses Google's Android to both give it a native touchscreen interface and access to all the features of the phone, including its 3D-capable ARM processor, assisted GPS, Bluetooth 2.0 and GPRS data.
OpenMoko explores Android
Open source handset manufacturer OpenMoko is expected to unveil plans to adopt the Linux-based Android as early as November, under an alleged project name called GTA02. AndroidGuys reports that the project will launch on a similar handset to the Neo FreeRunner, offering users a 400 to 500 MHz processor, with 128MB of SDRAM and 256MB of NAND Flash, as well as A-GPRS and a four-in-one "laser pen".
Openmoko shares schematics
Open-source cellular phone maker Openmoko today announced that it will supply the schematics for its 1973 phone and the recently unveiled Neo FreeRunner. Before this release, the CAD files were available under a Creative Commons Share-Alike license that allowed product designers to change the look and feel of the device. Now, engineers can freely customize FreeRunners on the outside while programmers can write any applications and programs for the devices.
OpenMoko Ships Friday
OpenMoko today said that it will start selling the Neo FreeRunner to the US on July 4th, marking its first phone release in the country. The touchscreen device is positioned as an unusual competitor to the iPhone whose strength is in its open access: based on a strictly open-source version of Linux, the device includes just the basic software for calling and SMS but is freely modifiable down to its core functions. Users can write or install apps that extend the phone's features without paying royalties.
OpenMoko Linux phone
CES will signal the debut of the Neo FreeRunner phone, maker OpenMoko has announced. Though based on an existing phone called the Neo 1973 (pictured), the FreeRunner is touted as the world's first mainstream phone to run on an open-source software platform, beating out any rivals running Google's Android. It specifically uses GNU Linux, enabling any coder with the skill to write a third-party program.
The FreeRunner also represents a technical upgrade over the 1973, as it has a 500MHz processor, 3D graphics rendering, and an updated assortment of applications. 802.11b/g Wi-Fi enables fast Internet access, and some commands can be triggered through motion sensors.