The 3 Linux Phones to Watch in 2008

Google Android

Without doubt the most exciting development in the mobile phones industry since the iPhone is Android, the new mobile operating system being developed by Google.

Android is built on the open Linux Kernel and utilizes a custom virtual machine that has been designed to optimize memory and hardware resources. Developers have been offered a $10 million reward for developing amazing and innovative mobile applications for the platform.

The Android OS will be available on several different handsets which will be manufactured by partners such as Motorola, HTC, Samsung, and LG – all capable of producing some stunning phones.

As the brains behind the Open Handset Alliance Google says they are “committed to commercially deploy handsets and services using the Android Platform in the second half of 2008″.


Deeda Pi Phone

Although not very well known the deeda Device family look like they could really succeed when commercially available. The three devices, Kiku, Menx and Pi, are all Linux based touch screen devices and offer users the freedom to create new applications, install third-party programs, and customize the interfaces as much as they want.

The Pi phone comes with 3.6″ High Resolution Screen, WiFi, 3G Internet and a 5.0 Mega pixel camera. A promotional video of this handset is available showing some very impressive features and an iPhone style interface.



OpenMoko is a Linux based open source mobile application development platform. Operators and developers have full access to OpenMoko source and they can build innovative applications on top of a basic phone platform.

Unlike most other Linux based phones the OpenMoko isn’t just vapour ware. Visit the shop and you can buy one today for $300.

Currently the phone is only intended for developers but a consumer orientated device is being manufactured for launch next year. The FIC’s Neo1973 smartphone, which utilizes the full OpenMoko platform will be available in January 2008.

Interestingly Trolltech, manufacturer of the Linux based Qtopia Greenphone, has sold out of Greenphones and is now directing customers to the OpenMoko website instead.

“Please note: Trolltech has sold out of Qtopia Greenphones and will not be producing more. To purchase phone hardware for Qtopia development, Trolltech suggests Open Moko’s Neo 1973.”


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7 thoughts on “The 3 Linux Phones to Watch in 2008

  1. It’s worth clarifying that Trolltech’s Qtopia Greenphone, which Nick mentions above, was not a commercial mobile phone: as the first open Linux phone, it was targeted at the mobile software developer community. Greenphone could only be purchased along with an SDK for application development on Trolltech’s Qtopia platform for Linux phones. Only around 1,000 phones were ever produced, with the aim of boosting the number of applications available for Linux phones.

    Now that other open Linux phones — such as the Neo1973 — have emerged, Trolltech is going back to what it feels it’s best at, which is software: its Qtopia pre-dates initiatives such as Android by many years (created in 2002) and is virtually the de-facto standard for Linux devices, accounting for the majority of the 15 million or so Linux phones around the world.

  2. There is a number of us, in Africa, that will love to have there handset with the Linux OS, but boy its a nightmare. If we wait for the distributors to get it here then there is a new model out already. May the distributors look into getting these sets to Africa and Tanzania to be specific.

  3. Hi Nick, and fellow readers,

    My name is Joe Bakhos and I’m in charge of Client Relations at deeda Inc. After reading your article I thought it might be helpful to open a direct dialog to answer any further questions or comments you might have about our company or upcoming products.

    As I do not want to take up a lot of room on this Blog I’ll leave our feedback email addy where you can drop off your questions or comments. If Nick or any of the other writers at Dial A Phone would like to setup an email interview, I’d be more than happy to help out with that as well.

    Thank you for taking the time to mention us amongst such august companies.


    Joe Bakhos
    Client Relations
    deeda Inc.
    joe – at – deeda – dot – com

    Anyone may reach me directly, but faster responses will likely be through:

    feedback – at – deeda – dot – com

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