Lilbits: F(x)tec Pro1-X keypad phone, Motorola hits #3 in US smartphone sales, Steam Deck answers, and more

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The F(x)tec Pro1-X is a smartphone with a 6-inch screen, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 processor, up to 8 GB of RAM and up to 256 GB of storage. But it does have a few features that make it very unusual for a smartphone in 2022: the phone has a slide-out keyboard, supports Android and Ubuntu Touch operating systems, has a microSD card slot and headphone jack, and a sleek design. Repairable – F(x)tec offers spare batteries and screens.

But while a crowdfunding campaign for the Pro1-X wrapped up in late 2020, the phone has yet to ship. F(x)tec said last year that supply chain issues were interfering…and they haven’t really improved since then. But now the company says the manufacturing plant has started testing the assembly processor, which means mass production could begin soon (if no further issues are detected). And that means phones could soon start shipping to backers.

F(x)tec Pro1-X

Crowdfunding has ended, but the phone is up for pre-order in the F(x)tec store for $829+, with an estimated ship date of April 2022. I’d take that estimate with a grain of salt for l moment however.

In other tech news, Motorola was the third-largest smartphone company in the US last year, Microsoft is making it easier to change the default web browser on Windows 11 (via an optional update that hasn’t been announced change), Vivo provides a preview of its upcoming foldable phone, the KDE Plasma desktop environment for GNU/Linux distros will soon support a swipe gesture to access the preview screen, and now that some reviewers have got my hands on the Steam Deck handheld game consoles for about a month, there are answers to questions about long(er)term use.

Here’s a roundup of recent tech news on the web:

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