Announcement: new batches of GTA04 ready for (pre)order

Lukas Märdian lukasmaerdian at
Mon Nov 14 22:39:11 CET 2011

This is awesome!
Thank you very much!

I already convinced a friend of mine to buy one as well.
And I'm happily experimenting with my GTA04A3 EA board.


On 14.11.2011 17:51, Marc Verwerft wrote:
> What a great achievement! Thanks a million for keeping the ideas of
> OpenMoko alive!
> I now know what to ask for as a Xmas present ;-)
> On Mon, Nov 14, 2011 at 4:02 PM, Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller <hns at
>> wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> I take for granted that you all are eagerly waiting for an annoucement
>> that another batch of GTA04 boards becomes available. We did wait
>> with an announcement until we can really answer all questions.
>> Now, we think we can.
>> Components have all been ordered for another (small) batch so that we
>> can get them from production in December. If everything goes well, we
>> can even ship out some boards before Christmas.
>> The boards are named GTA04A4 (meaning the PCB revision). They
>> are fully featured from hardware side:
>> * DM3730 at 800 MHz
>> * UMTS module with 3.75G (up to 14.4 MBit/s)
>> * Sensors (Barometer, Compass, Gyroscope, Accelerometer)
>> * GPS
>> * connector for optional camera module
>> * well documented building blocks so that you can write your own
>>   boot loaders and kernels. Nobody stops your creativity and
>>   nobody is pretending to protect you from yourself!
>> So you get something that is unique. A motherboard upgrade for
>> a handheld device. With open documentation to develop free and
>> open software. And, a community dedicated to continue the pioneering
>> work of the first Openmoko team. Last but not least, a team that listens
>> to your wishes for future upgrades and trying to fulfill them.
>> How much will it cost?
>> We know that most of you do expect that it is not too expensive, something
>> in the range of the GTA02. Unfortunately, we can't fulfill this specific
>> wish.
>> There are two main reasons (besides we are not financial magicians):
>> 1. the device has some very expensive components (CPU + Memory +
>>    UMTS module)
>> 2. we have really small production batches and therefore, have to pay
>>     much more for the components than e.g. Apple or HTC (factor 2-3
>>     compared to reports from iSuppli).
>> And, we can't subsidize devices because this is not a feasible long-term
>> strategy from an economical point of view.
>> But since raising the size of the batches ("bulk purchasing") has a
>> big effect ("economies of scale"), we have developed a strategy that should
>> make everyone happy:
>> A) there will be units available from (limited) stock shortly before
>> Christmas,
>>    at a high price. We try to produce more of these units to fulfill orders
>>    within days. This offer is also good for getting samples for projects.
>> B) you can participate in a group-buy at a lower price. This requires
>>    that we reach a certain number of units before we can start production.
>> So the price and availablility are:
>> a) 666,66 EUR; available for shipment from stock; planned to start
>>    on 19th December
>> b) 499.99 EUR; requires 300 ordered units before 10th February 2012
>>   (week after FOSDEM); production start expected for April 2012. There
>>   is also a rebate for the first 100 early bookings.
>> There are rebates for quantites: 5% for orders of 5 units, 10% for 10
>> units,
>> 12% for 50 units. So if you build buying groups (like for the Freerunners),
>> you can save some more money.
>> Both offers are ready for preorder/subscription through this link:
>> There is a third type of offer - a customized GTA04 board. This means you
>> can order a board variant where not all components are installed. And the
>> display connector can be replaced by a Board2Board connector. This allows
>> to plug the GTA04 like a module on a master board and develop different
>> handhelds and tablets based on the GTA04 design.
>> An example of such a device can be seen here:
>> Finally, I have compiled some FAQ we have received in the past. If your
>> question is not amongst them, please ask.
>> So let's prove that the Openmoko community can not only design and
>> build samples of a GTA04 but also go into perpetual mass production.
>> Nikolaus Schaller
>> FAQ:
>> Q: Do I need a GTA01 or GTA02?
>> A: Yes. The GTA04 is a motherboard that fits into a GTA01 or GTA02
>> case. It does not have all electromechanic compontents. Missing are:
>> GSM antenna, internal GPS receiver, Earpiece speaker, Handsfree
>> speakers, Vibracall motor, Battery holder, Battery, USB power supply,
>> and very important: it does not include a display module. So you have
>> to take all missing parts from an existing GTA01 or GTA02.
>> The only exception is the LCD module where we can provide spare
>> parts.
>> But you can operate the board without these components - but then
>> it is not a handheld portable computer with phone functionality.
>> Or you can try to build your own case. Some inspiring proposals
>> and samples have been shown recently (e.g. wooden case).
>> Q: Does the device support the US frequencies?
>> A: Yes, it is Quadband GSM/GPRS/EDGE/WCDMA (3.75G), but not
>> CDMA2000 1x nor EV-DO
>> Q: Does it have FCC and CE approvals?
>> A: At the moment partially. The UMTS module and the WLAN chipsets
>> are fully precertified. And the GTA04 system has successfully passed
>> the CE emmission tests, that it does not produce harmful interferences.
>> We are just missing the CE ESD and safety tests.
>> Q: Why do I have to wait so long if I participate in the group buy?
>> A: The reason is that our project has no external funding and needs
>> to collect enough money before we can order chips and components.
>> This introduces two types of delay: the preorder-window and then
>> the delivery time of components. E.g. PCBs are built to our specific
>> request and that needs between 20 and 30 working days. And
>> producing and testing several 100 units needs quite a while :)
>> Q: Will there be variants?
>> A: We have decided to run only a single variant with all components
>> installed. It turned out to be cheaper in total than to have a low-end
>> variant (e.g. without sensors) and a high-end variant.
>> We have one variant that we can provide on demand: the module
>> version. You can use it as the basis for connecting larger displays
>> and experiment with alternate cases. Details how to mount mechanically
>> and the pin layout can be found in the System Manual
>> Q: Does it work with a GTA01 case?
>> A: Yes. You will even get stereo speakers since the speaker box of the
>> GTA02 has two. One was sacrificed in the GTA02 to provide WLAN.
>> Q: Do you have complete phones?
>> A: We have a handful of complete phones built from returned GTA02
>> units. They are also available in the shop:
>> Q: Do I get the money back if the group buy does not reach the minimum
>> quantity within the preorder window?
>> A: Yes. 100% (less money transfer cost).
>> Q: What is the status of the software?
>> A: We (Goldelico) do offer a hardware validation kernel and a
>> Debian/LXDE rootfs, but this does not comprise a phone software.
>> Projekts like SHR, QtMoko and others are in the middle of porting
>> their distros to the GTA04 platform. So the software is not completely
>> ripe but on good progress.
>> But we already can do phone calls by a simple shell script and
>> apt-get install through UMTS.
>> Q: Is there driver support for every bit and piece of the hardware?
>> A: We do not yet have drivers for Camera, IrDA, Audio IN, Torch/Flash,
>> FM radio. If you can support the development, please help!
>> Please also note that these hardware parts have not been tested in
>> detail. So they may not work at all.
>> Q: Where are the schematics?
>> A: The System Manual includes the schematics:
>> They will be updated soon to reflect the changes from the GTA04A3 (Early
>> Adopter) to the GTA04A4 board.
>> Q: Do you have spare components like case, antenna etc.?
>> A: We can't buy or produce these parts and have no steady supply.
>> We will try to get some replacements, but can't promise.
>> Q: Is it possible to downgrade from the GTA04 to GTA02?
>> A: If you swap the display again, yes. You can also get a second
>> display module so that you can simply swap the GTA02 and GTA04
>> boards+display units within minutes:
>> Q: Do I need a debug board?
>> A: No. The TI OMAP is "unbrickable" and you just may need a
>> RS232 cable to boot and reconfigure NAND flash parameters.
>> Q: I want to use it in a project and need 50, 100, 500, 1000 units.
>> A: For samples or small quantities, please order them from our
>> shop. For larger batches, please contact us and we will find out
>> how fast we can produce and at which volume rebate. Depending
>> on quantities, we can develop and produce variants.
>> Q: What can I do to increase the likelihood that the group buy
>> reaches the minimum quantity?
>> A: Convince your fellow GTA01/02 owners to think about buying
>> a GTA04 board. Talk, Mail, Blog about the GTA04 to make it
>> known that the Openmoko project did lift off again.
>> Q: I don't feel comfortable to replace the motherboard myself.
>> A: The most critical part is to remove the LCD module from the
>> GTA01/GTA02 board. Either find someone to do it for you. Or
>> get a spare part. Or send the device to us and we will do it for
>> you at a small fee.
>> Please follow the instructions like for a buzz rework:
>> Q: I am a reseller. How can I get devices?
>> A: You are welcome to support the Openmoko movement. But
>> we can't give any big dealer margins because the components
>> and production are already very expensive. Please contact us
>> for details.
>> Q: My country is not listed in your shop.
>> A: Running export into all countries on this world needs a
>> lot of paperwork and knowledge to follow all the customs
>> regulations. And worse, we have some US-Technology
>> inside the GTA04 that is classified by EAR. So we need
>> a re-export permission. This is all beyond our capabilites.
>> Therefore we have to regret that we can't serve all countries
>> on this world. But you may find friends who live in a country
>> we can directly serve and you manage the export yourself.
>> _______________________________________________
>> Openmoko community mailing list
>> community at
> _______________________________________________
> Openmoko community mailing list
> community at

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