Neither iPhone or OpenMoko are revolutionary

Andreas Kostyrka andreas at
Thu Jan 18 12:22:59 CET 2007

* Renaissance Man <renaissanceman at> [070118 02:20]:
> On 18 Jan 2007, at 12:57 am, Richard Franks wrote:
> >I disagree - VoIP via WiFi is an obvious evolution rather than revolutionary.
> But you're looking at it from a geek's point of view instead of a typical end-user's point of view.
> Anything that allows me to go from spending £45 plus a month on mobile communications to effectively zero, including talking to my parents who live on the other side of the planet, is 
> revolutionary.

But you can do that already without VoIP. Believe me, because I'm a
little bit a professional nomad between Austria and Germany, so I know
the drill.

-) calling cards.
-) call forwarding from a landline.
-) dual-number SIMs (in Germany some carriers offer a landline number
for a mobile that is cheap if the mobile is in it's homezone, add to
this callforwarding to the real mobile which is free, you get a mobile
that is callable at landline prices)

Basically, offering plugins and support to use all these items easy in
everyday operation, you get your GBP45 => GBP5 revolution.

Actually, these options do have the benefit of working whereever I am,
while free (that's what you imply with GBP0) hotspots are not that

> >I don't think it's a 'killer app' either - in the terms of the phone manufacturer who is more likely to benefit from getting 6-12months lead and market share in an unexploited but 
> >growing market (Open Source Mobile Phones).
> Killer app: "a computer program that is so useful or desirable that it proves the value of some underlying technology"
> I couldn't think of a better example of a killer app than sticking a piece of software on a device that lets people speak to each other around the world effectively for free.
But it does not. BTW, if you want just this feature, look for some of
the highend Nokia phones (they do have WiFi and sip client on one
piece of hardware *g*)
> The revolution won't have people saying, oh man, I want one of those, because it's open source. They'll be saying, oh man, I want one of those because I can communicate with a mobile 
> device for a pittance (open source will simply be one way of doing it).

No, the revolution will be, when people will see what is possible
without having to pay to much attention to the carriers.

Believe, I've done very interesting things that people have deemed
impossible (well the techs at the carrier's hotline where shocked)
with a completly locked down Sidekick. You cannot believe how itchy
I'm to do redo some of my stuff properly.


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