what is the difference between openMoko and windows mobile based phones

Richard Bennett richard.bennett at skynet.be
Thu Jan 18 14:47:14 CET 2007

On Thursday 18 January 2007 12:39, hank williams wrote:
> What I mean by this is that it seems everyone is saying that the big
> difference is that you can get 3rd party *real apps* on the phone. And this
> is said as if windows mobile phones like moto q, blackjack and pocket PC
> phones wont allow this.
You are buying freedom, but this comes at a cost:
I'm prepared to pay more for a phone that might offer less out of the box, to 
get freedom.
I'm prepared to invest time learning how to improve my phone, purely because I 
enjoy that.
I'm prepared to pay upfront, pay more than the market price, or re-purchase 
the same (improved) device a year later, to support a company that gives me 
I'm prepared not to buy a phone - however good it is - that would make 
Microsoft any money, because they control our freedom and it is important 
that manufacturers see they can make money without pre-loading each and every 
device with monopolistic software that restricts user's freedom.
You cannot believe how hard it is to purchase a laptop that doesn't 
automatically include paying Microsoft or Apple some $50 or so in license 
fees, even if you'll never use their software.
(And many companies are even paying for windows twice, once at purchase time 
and once with their corporate licensing models)

What freedom? Last year my son bought a cheap MP3 player. He was surprised 
that on a windows computer he could only put songs on it, not get them off 
again. Why? Microsoft wants to give the impression this will prevent people 
copying songs, so their partner's in the music business are happy. At the 
same time the memory-stick people are happy, as MS protect their market too.
The only person who gets screwed-over is the customer.
Plug the same MP3 player into a Linux PC, and you can do what you want with 
it, even use it as a memory stick for file-transfer.  

> Now I am not saying open source isnt great. But from your *average* users
> perspective I would love to hear the advantages of the open source for
> these devices. Is this just a geek issue? 
I think the free and open movement is based around people who are prepared to 
make sacrifices to uphold their convictions, and they will often be referred 
to as geeks. It is starting to creep into the mainstream though, with more 
and more people realizing that the restrictions they thought were inherent to 
a device or technology were actually artificially put in place to restrict 
them, and to get them to keep paying for upgrades and extra options when this 
is not really necessary.

> It seems like most of the apps 
> described on this list could be done with any of the windows mobile phones.
> I'd just love, for my own edification, to hear why this is wrong.
Most could, but not always executed in your best interest but often in the 
interest of the service providers and the manufacturers, often buggy and 
shoddy (ref lots of Nokia apps), and often not free or opensource. 
Now if I wanted to load 4 SIM cards into memory, and switch between them when 
making outgoing calls to avoid roaming charges, which platform would have any 
chance of allowing this to work?
Or if I wanted to backup all my phone's settings and then clone them onto a 
new phone... ideal for distributing phones within a company. 
Or if I want to have a command-line operated phone... 
user>sms -ufred 'How are you?'
Or if the phone does not support a bluetooth keyboard? Research it and build 
the driver/profile yourself, or float the idea and wait for someone else to 
do it, or search the net and find out someone already has.

You basically asked what is better, Windows or Linux, and the above is my take 
on that.



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