handmade.network » Forums » How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
Barret5Ocal
Barret Gaylor
21 posts

I am a game designer who recently became interested in coding in a handmade way. I am not that experienced, but I want to learn.

#8548 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

I'm not sure if this is going to work, but I was wondering if anyone wanted to start this discussion. I recently started thinking about what a "Handmade" smart phone would look like. If we were to make a phone(both the hardware and the OS) in a handmade way, what would that phone look like? What features would you want that phone to have? What would you like to do with that phone if it existed? What benefits would the mobile industry gain from this type of phone?

-Disclaimer-
1. I am not announcing a project here. I just interested in the discussion. I am not nearly a good enough dev to do this.
2. I am probably won't contribute to this discussion due to being a beginner. I am really interested in what other people think.

Thank you for giving this a read.

Just some designer guy.
MandleBro
Jack Mott
103 posts
1 project

Web Developer by day, game hobbyist by night.

#8549 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

Just a data point for discussion:

http://www.ubuntu.com/phone

If it was me, the big thing would be no centralized store for apps, no sideloading, etc.
Just works like a normal PC. Install things any way you want.
Mr4thDimention
Allen Webster
314 posts
2 projects

Heyo

#8550 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

I am also not a good enough dev to say anything intelligent about how you would do this at any level, but I certainly know what features I would put at the top of my list:

1. Insane battery life (modulo thirdy party apps) and a battery that can be replaced as it get's too old to hold a charge.
2. Totally open data and execution model that let's me put any file type on it, read any file type off it, and make apps that are entirely in natively compiled code.
3. Super high quality sound and large dynamic range.

I could budge on 3 but if it didn't have 1 and 2 I wouldn't even want it over just a regular phone.
chronokun
Michael Cameron
31 posts
#8554 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

I think there's enough open-source smartphone projects that are always struggling to open source as much of their design as possible and running into many problems with even just sourcing components without being buried in NDAs and being able to release designs in open file formats and get necessary patent licenses and so on to make their phones fully open source that a 'handmade' phone is unfortunately probably a bit too wild of an idea for now.

I would suggest looking at things like:

Openmoko

DragonBox Pyra

Neo900

Or even take a look at the Sailfish OS phones from Jolla if you are interested in something a bit more open and powerful than Android. Sadly a phone that doesn't need to be thrown out and replaced every few months for superficial reasons like being incompatible with the latest bloated slow version of Android didn't appeal to consumer electronics companies wanting to make money out of filling the world with e-waste so they've pretty much done their best to kill the idea of a PC-like smartphone.
Connor_Rentz
Connor
54 posts

It's been so long ;)

#8555 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

I second Allen's features. My most wanted feature would be the ability to put anything I want on _my_ device. One of the most irksome things about Apple products is the hassle you have to go through to get your own media on to _your_ device.

I think it would be cool to let the consumer build their own phone just how you can build your own PC. Obviously everyone wouldn't want to do that, but it could be an option.

Lastly, I think customization is something that can be taken to a whole other level. I've only briefly used Android but I know for a fact that Apple is majorly closed on customization. It would be nice to have the user able to make their own decisions for a change!

If anyone ever wanted to make Handmade Smart Phone that would awesome! Maybe someday :D

- Connor

<C
Croepha
David Butler
72 posts
1 project

I love pretty much anything technical, whether it be programming, networking, hacking or electronics.

#8572 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

I would really like phones to be faster than they are now... I hate the animations that they have to play to distract you from how long it takes to load something. I think that lack of ui responsiveness is the biggest problem with smartphones today...

I would also like to see a more modern exploration of peer-to-peer applications for the smartphone... its a shame we can't to PTT phone-to-phone coms... or even phones that could utilize FCC part 97 or /GMRS/FRS/PRS spectrums for local p2p

On the hardware level, iIt might take a really long time for us to get to the point where any handmade solution would be competitive (in terms of speed and power consumption) with existing ASICs for CDMA/TDMA... Early handmade versions of these components, if we wanted to pursue them, would probably be based on FPGAs... As a possible additional intermediate step, we could try to experiment with software defined radio, which FPGA's could then later be modeled after...

There is a lot to be explored here, and we may even want to look into a renaissance of some older technologies... I think that some of the modern telephony technologies are a big step backwards in terms of quality, like voice over packet switching...

404 Signature not found
popcorn
N Setobol
15 posts
1 project
Warehouse worker/Programmer
#8575 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

RaspBerry PI? You can prob use a light weight linux like Arch with X and somehow create a program that connects to google phone's API? I'm not sure how you would connect something to a phone service like T-Mobile or AT&T.
It sounds like a fun project, I wish I could figure out how to do it.

github: https://github.com/nsetobol

"I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes. That way I wouldn't have to have any useless conversations with anybody" -J.D Sailnger
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1564 posts
1 project
#8576 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago Edited by Mārtiņš Možeiko on Sept. 12, 2016, 8:48 p.m.

popcorn
I'm not sure how you would connect something to a phone service like T-Mobile or AT&T.

With 3G modem & SIM card. There a ton of options. For example: https://www.cooking-hacks.com/sho...rs-sim900-shield-for-raspberry-pi
Floresy
Tom
21 posts

None

#8580 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

As an alternative to using Raspberry PI as a base there's also the c.h.i.p., pretty cheap. I'd like to see smartphones use input devices other than touchscreens, personally I've found they've never resulted in accurate input (maybe they're accurate themselves but they tend produce bad input, see: autocorrect having to be a thing).

0xdedededede.....
mmozeiko
Mārtiņš Možeiko
1564 posts
1 project
#8582 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago

Chip has Allwinner SoC. Which has Mali GPU. That means no source, no docs and binary drivers...
Floresy
Tom
21 posts

None

#8584 How would you make a Handmade Smart Phone?
1 year, 5 months ago Edited by Tom on Sept. 13, 2016, 3:06 a.m.

mmozeiko
Chip has Allwinner SoC. Which has Mali GPU. That means no source, no docs and binary drivers...

Didn't know that, :/ laaaame. I mean, I guess its still workable, but definitely out of the handmade spirit.

0xdedededede.....