Necunos NC_1 is an expensive open source Linux “phone” without a modem


Several weeks ago I wrote about the upcoming “Necuno Mobile” phone made by a company called Necunos and running Linux on the NXP i.MX6 Quad processor. The phone was supposed to be 100% open source hardware with all software and hardware resources to be made public.

There have been progress since, as well as a name change since Necunos NC_1 is now in pre-order for 1 199 euros VAT included and international shipping with delivery promised in March 2019.

The specifications of the Necunos NC_1 should include:

  • SoC – NXP i.MX 6Quad ​​Quad-Core Arm Cortex-A9 Processor with Live GPU
  • System memory – 1 GB of RAM
  • Storage – 8 GB of storage
  • Display – 5 ″ Touchscreen (attached or detached)
  • Audio – 3.5mm audio jack, built-in microphone and speaker
  • Connectivity – 2.4 GHz 802.11 b / g / n Wi-Fi
  • Miscellaneous – Power, volume and user programmable buttons
  • USB – 1x micro-USB port
  • Battery – 3,500 mAh battery
  • Body – Aluminum

What’s missing is a cellular modem, so you won’t be able to use 2G / 3G / 4G networks for calls, texts, or data. This means it’s not really a phone at this point, but rather a Linux tablet with a smaller screen. The company sells it as an “engineering unit,” so it’s probably for early software development before a suitable Linux phone is released.

You can purchase the phone without any preinstalled operating system, or select one of the following options:

  • Debian with Plasma Mobile
  • PostmarketOS with Plasma Mobile
  • Maemo Leste
  • Nemo Mobile
  • MoonOS

The C in NC_1 stands for community, and there is also an enterprise version called Necunos NE_1 which comes with a custom hardened operating system and hardware, as well as secure communications. The phone is designed for governments and businesses where the highest security is required. NE_1 cannot be purchased through the online store and instead you must send your request by email to [email protected]

That’s a lot of money for low-end hardware, even though the product is quite unique. However, it is difficult to make a case for Necunos NC_1, even for open source and Linux enthusiasts, when the $ 700 Purism Librem 5 Linux smartphone ships in April as an actual commercial product with an NXP i processor. .MX 8 newer and a cellular modem.

Going through Liliputer

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