(edited to make the post a bit more to the point)
I’ve been thinking about creating this topic for a while, but held back to wait for FP to release the complete build environment for Fairphone OS on Fairphone 2. However, since it lasts longer than I expected and I wouldn’t know what to do with the ‘build environment’, anyway, I decided to go ahead and give it a try.
Basically, the idea is to reach some kind of consensus concerning the following points, Which scenarios concerning Software-freedom on the FP2 would there be? How ‘happy’ would said scenario make a person like me: a google-avoiding, slightly paranoid, freedom-loving, ‘regular’ user (able and prepared to root a telephone and install an alternative OS). Here ‘Happy’ basically means the following points: 1: I wouldn’t be have major privacy concerns and 2: I wouldn’t have to go without the use of essential features of a smartphone.
To make this more tangible, we are asked to comment the different scenarios on the following qualities.
- Operating system and core functionality is FOSS
- Project stability (added because of doubts about possible Sailfish and Firefox OS longterm viability)
- Apps are FOSS
- Control over App-permissions
- Possibility that scenario will be reached within first six monts of 2016.
First off: Fairphone’s position concerning software-freedom:
Fairphone acknowledges software-freedom as a part of fairness, but focus on fair production of the hardware. Their drive to support alternative OS-es is related to their wish to build telephones that can be used for many years. The experience from FP1(u) has learned that software-freedom is a practical necessity for long-term software support.
FP is continuously talking to developers of alternative OS-es: both the communities as well as companies like Jolla, Mozilla and Cannonical. However, FP is not going to actively support alternative OS-es themselves. They are too small a player for this: the porting of alternative OS-es is firstly a challenge for the FOSS and FP-communities. However, FP will do everything in their (legal) power to allow others to port their alternative OS-es to FP2. Since there are too many external factors that FP cannot control, FP will not make promises regarding the possibilities of alternative OS-es. Potential customers for whom this is very important will be buying a Fairphone at their own risk.
1. The scenarios
1.Stock FairphoneOS (Android 5.1); Rooted
- Android-non-free/open Operating system with most apps that ‘phone home’ disabled.
- Google-apps manually deinstalled
- F-droid for apps
- X-posed framework with X-privacy to control app-permissions
2.Alt-OS: Cyanogenmod 12.1
- Community-developed OS, almost everything open sourced
- Instructions for porting and future development dependent on dedication of FP and CM-communities
- X-privacy to control app-permissions
- F-droid for apps
- Privately-developed OS, most source-code open; UI and Android-app-compatibility-layer are closed-source
- Instructions for porting and future development dependent on dedication of Jolla
- nothing like X-privacy currently available
- F-droid for apps, only possible when complete operating system is available. Current porting plans do not include the use of the android compatibility layer. This means that only native Sailfish-apps will be available.
- Mozilla (non-private)-developped OS, everything open-sourced / Cannonical (private)-developped OS, everything open-sourced
- Instructions for porting and future development dependetn on dedication of Mozilla, Cannonical and community.
- noting like x-privacy available
- HTML5 & Native apps (no android-based apps)
5. Alt-OS: Tizen
not known to me, please comment…
6. Alt-OS: Replicant
- community-developped OS, software 100% free (as in freedom)
- F-droid apps
So: go ahead and comment, criticize, ask, improve etc… I’ll edit this post to keep up with the project of reaching consensus…