Questions about the usability of GTA02

Margo Koppelmann margo.koppelmann at
Tue Feb 10 21:54:17 CET 2009

On 1/31/09, Tschaka <Stuff4tschaka at> wrote:
> So, again somebody is asking a question about usabilty. Please don't get me
> wrong, i actually browsed the mailing lists and wikis, but still there are
> some unsure things, and i'd like to have a bit more of a summarization.
> I'm interested in buying an openmoko Neo Freerunner, but i'd like to get to
> know some things before i will. I'm a student, so 300 €(even 249 €, Pulster
> ;) ) is an amount of money i can't spend every month, or w/o any effort. So
> i don't want to end up getting a Neo now, being unsatisfied and getting a
> gta03/other brand later this or next year.
> I'm not that deep into Linux, but i'm running Ubuntu reasonably well, so i'm
> not totally unfamiliar with linux. i know what svn/git is, and wouldnt be
> totally unable to build somethings from sources - although it's not an every
> day task here.
> So, here's my list of questions, i hope somebody will answer and clear them
> up a bit :)
> 1st) Battery Power
> sometimes i'm at university from 9am to 10pm 6 days a week. I'm often
> browsing mobile news pages with my phone when going to university, or having
> a chat (XMPP of course!), approx 40 minutes a day. In the meantime i'm
> listening to music.
> I got no actual watch, so my phone is my watch, means i often activate the
> background light to get to know the time.
> I'm sending like 1-5 messages a day, having a phone call now and then.
> Now and then i would like to access the web via wifi.
> So, since i'm not able to plug the phone to a power source at university,
> would i be able to run it the whole day, without getting out of battery
> power after 10 hours?
> And, will there be a (software) fix (soon) for the issue, that the battery
> gets uncharged, even if plugged in, as soon as the battery is fully charged?
> (i got no problem charging the phone every night, but when it's fully
> charged at 2am, it would have been running 7 hours on battery power by my
> arrival at university, so the battery would be low sooner)
> 2) Calls
> As i'm sometimes having a phone call (huh, surprise), i would like to know,
> if the echo, and especially the buzzing issue will be fixed soon. I read,
> the echo was fixed in FSO/SHR already, but regarding the buzz i read the
> mailing list, but there i didnt feel i got a reliable answer(sorry for
> asking again). i'm not familiar with soldering iron, and i'm not willing to
> crack up another phone (already did once this way :) ). So, will there a fix
> of this buzzing soonish by default (a7, a8?) on the base of the often
> refered capacitor? (as i said, i'm not willing to pay twice, getting a gta03
> later due to unfixed buzz problems, or replacing a damaged freerunner).
> Also, i'm not willing to pay 300€ for a phone that doesnt allow me to have a
> nice talk with my dad or gf on an at least acceptable level for the person
> on the other end (u know, my gf isn't that patient and insightfull with
> opensource software(issues) as i am, it took me weeks and shutting down icq
> completely to convince her to use xmpp :) )
> 3) Software
> I got no problem with rudimentary software. Most important thing is Sending
> messages, Having a few Calls, Having GPS apps to improve Openstreetmap and
> such and browsing the web. I know the software is something being worked on,
> and apparently it improved a lot already.
> But: Do such basic features work already (like browsing phone book to make a
> call) acceptably reliable? I'm patient in handling problems and fiddling
> around a bit, wanting to have a succes in the end though.
> And: how sluggish is the software? i often read glamo slows the phone down
> pretty much.
> 4) GTA03?
> Or would u rather advise me to wait for GTA03? I really want to support
> Openmoko, and to be honest, as i heard first of openmoko like 2 years ago, i
> already wanted to have one. On the other hand, i'm sorry to say, that such
> fundamental bugs hold me back getting one yet. But according to the wiki,
> gta03 will have features like EDGE, a Cam, better battery and removed glamo
> (rather fast software "feeling" and video performance?) that sound very
> interesting.
> EGDE would be nice, but for me isn't necessary, and as Cam i could use my
> current phone.
> But shall i, at least, rather wait for a7, or a8 if i want a buzz fix by
> default? at the moment, this is, besides battery life, the issue that
> concerns me most.
> 5) Summarize
> Long story short, i don't want to get disappointed buying a neo. I mean,
> fancy features, software and such is nice to have, but if fundamental things
> won't work (acceptable), I and many others won't support Openmoko on the
> long term, means replacing the Neo with a later release of Openmoko in 1,2
> or 3 years.
> and, as sean moss pultz wrote, "John Doe" won't see any advantage of getting
> an openmoko over other "open" (haha, at least on his point of view) phones
> like iPhone, and Android ones.
> Hopefully i'll get some constructive hints on my questions, and if i'd
> rather wait, or buy on the spur of moment.
> --
> View this message in context:
> Sent from the Openmoko Community mailing list archive at

I left my Freerunner charging for the knight. In the morning the
battery was 94% charged.
8:00 - Battery is 94%. I start to listen to music (.ogg) with my FR.
Screen is blanked during this.
8:40 - I stop listening to music. Battery is 86%.
17:00 - Battery is 68%. I start surfing the web using GPRS.
17:17 - I stop surfing the web. Battery is 64%.
18:35 - Battery is 54%. I start to listen to music (with blanked screen).
19:12 - I stop listening to music. Battery is 46%.
21:40 - Battery is 40%. I start surfing the web over wifi.

During the day I've made a few phone calls, sent one sms, used the GPS
with tangoGPS for about 10 minutes, played some games and checked
regularly for the battery state.

Right now I'm still using the wifi and I'm writing this mail on my FR.
I'ts 22:51 and battery  is 12% charged.

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