Some light ahead...

Igor Foox igorfoox at
Sat Apr 28 00:19:37 CEST 2007

On 27-Apr-07, at 5:09 PM, Duncan Hudson wrote:

> Jim Thompson wrote:
>> 1) the Openmoko-for-customers is slated for 9/11/07, so it was  
>> going to ship after the "Q207" date for the iPhone in any case.
> It was supposed to be in developers & enthusiasts hands back in  
> February - was it not?  The plan was to get the geek on board, get  
> them writing apps and fixing problems so that when the general  
> release happened it would have everything in place to blow the  
> competitors away.  Well, as we all know it didn't ship so nobody  
> (ok a few) is working on anything.  So when / if it ships in  
> September will it really be that impressive?  Yes, to you and me  
> it'll be great - a Linux based phone will be wonderful.  But to my  
> mom, your neighbor?  No, they'll opt for the polished ready to roll  
> iPhone.

I think it's wrong to assume that every customer that FIC loses with  
the Neo will go to the iPhone. First of all the iPhone's price point  
is quite high when compared to the Neo, and will be out of reach for  
many. Also see my point bellow about distribution channels.

>> 2) the iPhone may slip too.
>> Its all the rumor in the Apple world these days.  We already know  
>> that Apple has slipped its next OS release (10.5) because it put  
>> some large number of its OS folks on the iPhone project, in order  
>> to get it out the door.
> It may, but they have a hell of a lot more at stake if they slip  
> the date.  To pull developers of OSX, put them on the iPhone, and  
> then slip both dates?  Their stock would tank unbelievably - I  
> don't think they'll slip the iPhone date.
>> 3) the iPhone is being sold (in the US) through AT&T/Cingular's  
>> channels, which are deep and wide.  Getting a "consumer" to the  
>> iPhone will be easy.  Getting that same individual to an OpenMoko  
>> phone will be much more difficult.
> Getting the 'average joe' to the OpenMoko unknown is going to be  
> difficult at best.  Getting the 'average joe' to the OpenMoko when  
> the iPhone, et. al., are flooding the market will be next to  
> impossible.

I don't know what FIC's plans are for selling the phone through  
mobile providers in the future, but having 'average joe' buy the  
handset from FIC directly is _the_ major barier to wider distribution  
in my opinion. At least in North America, not many 'average joes' buy  
their handset from anyone but the mobile carrier. So if FIC can get  
the phone distributed through carriers, I can easily see them having  
pretty good sales figures. Whether carriers would like to sell an  
open phone is an entirely different story of course...

>> 4) Relax... you're not going to be able to add features to an iPhone.
> OSX is unix based, so you and I both know that one will be able to  
> add apps to the iPhone.  We also both know that for it to succeed  
> in the business environment they'll have to allow 3rd party apps.
> Know that I want nothing more than for this device to succeed, but  
> I truly believe with each slip its success becomes more difficult.   
> There comes a point in the game when one just has to play the hand  
> that they're holding - whether it's a winning hand or not...

Agreed, and much like many others I'm eagerly waiting for the chance  
to pre-order the first revision of the Neo.


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