It remains early days for the fledgling Linux phone, but decisions are starting to be made on the kind of hardware that will power the device.
Purism seems confident that the Librem 5 handset will use the newer, faster, and more power efficient i.MX8 SoC (system on a chip). The older, less powerful i.MX6 chipset originally touted appears to be off the table.
If you were among the thousands who backed the Librem 5 crowdfunding campaign you may recall that it ran with a bit of a technical fudge on system specs. It listed the i.MX6 as the CPU and GPU combo, as Purism knows this chip works well with free software (via the Etnaviv driver), but it expressed its hope that something newer could be used.
“The i.MX8 SoC is the most likely candidate we will use in the Librem 5”
Now, based on the discussions Purism has had with chip maker NXP, and touched on in the first progress report, their confidence seems well founded. They say the i.MX8 SoC is “the most likely candidate we will use in the Librem 5”.
Elsewhere the company has also begun evaluating displays. The hope is to use 5 or 5.5-inch touchscreen with a resolution of up to full HD (1920×1080). To help get development of the software side of things underway Purism is hooking up high-definition 5.5-inch displays to their development boards.
With new team members on board, and new partnerships and cooperation between open source projects being built, it sounds like Purism is in a good position to deliver on their goal of shipping the Librem 5 phone to backers starting in early 2019.
For more details on how things are progressing do head over and check out the full blog post.