Ubuntu phone on FP1, (similar hardware as the Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu)

Hey out there,
now as the BQ Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition is launched, i have to ask:

Might it be possible, that the similar hardware from the BQ to the FP1 leeds to a runable Ubuntu on it ? Has anyone tried to get it running ? The official ubuntu device list shows mainly Nexus phones, but the BQ is also with Mediatek chipset.

Waiting for positive feetback :wink:


The idea is not bad, but I don’t think that Ubuntu is the Smartphone OS for people who want to use theyr Fairphone as simple as possible.
But the “normal” Aquaris E 4.5 has also the similar Mediatek chipset and works with Android 4.4 (KitKat).
It should be possible to use these divers to update the Faiphone OS to KitKat.
The simpliest way to test this is to download the image from http://storage.googleapis.com/otas/2014/Smartphones/Aquaris_E4.5/bq/1.4.1_20150108-1058_bq-FW.zip and to flash it on the Fairphone.
Who makes the ty? :wink:

there already is a recovery.img for Android 4.4 out - see: Cyanogenmod 11 for Fairphone FP1(U) Install guide + experiences

Continuing the discussion from Ubuntu phone on FP1, (similar hardware as the Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu):

Yes I know, but this Image has some bugs who prohibit a normal use oft the Fairphone:

I would prefer a KitKat-Version that works “normally”, perhaps a fork of the Aquaris E 4.5.

Good question! If no one of the users owns the capability for porting an OS like Ubuntu to Fairphones why not ask the software guys of Fairphone.com. As actual problems with the latest update show, it’s not an easy job to deal with google. Maybe they like canonical better. :grin:

Sorry folks, but the Mediathek Chipset alone won’t help with any of the issues, because these are additional parts which require own drivers, setup and testing. You’d have to look at the speific components to match. If you want, you can give it a try - All the files chrmhoffmann used for his CM 11 port are on Github…

Is it possible for us to obtain a list of components that are used in the Fairphone? If we could get those I’d offer myself to talk with BQ if they might be able to tell us the differences between the two phones. This might, as already mentioned, not work out in the end but it’s certainly worth a try!

I too would like to see Ubuntu running on my Fairphone. Since BQ released their Aquaris E4.5 i’m checking the ubuntu-wiki https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Touch/Devices in hope of someone doing the porting work for me :wink: no luck so far.
The Image of the Aquaris is also linked on the wiki, but since we don’t know whats working and what not it would be great to have an image for switching back to the Fairphone. Is such an image available and where?
The Android 4.4 as mentioned above is not the right one I suspect.
Since the Aquaris and the Fairphone have the same chipset I suppose there’s only minor adjustments to be made to the aquaris image. But as @paugre mentioned we probably need a components list. So here is your +1.
And yes it might not work, but worth a try.
The Fairphone and Ubuntu Ideology mix perfectly well in my opinion. Still missing the Fairphone-Logo on the Carrier Advisory Group though. http://partners.ubuntu.com/find-a-partner?

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They do not haved the same chipset.

The bq Aquaris 4.5 has a Mediatek MT6582, the Fairphone a MT6589.
They have the same ARM Core v7 and therefore CPU architecture, which is important on linux, but are completly different platform, although similar in performance.
See : MT6582 vs MT6589. In my understanding, the MT6582 is even more highlly integrated. Obvious differences are cpu-frequency (bq: 1.3GHz, FP: 1.0GHz) and Graphics chip (similar performance, the FP1U should outperform the bq).

That means for example the could be using different modems and are definitly using different graphic drivers. However Ubuntu is able to run on Android graphic drivers to my knowledge and both ubuntu and Android use a linux kernel. I think porting should be possible. But do not know how straight forward it is.

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I’ll buy next Fairphone if it runs Ubuntu phone :pensive:


See the new Ubuntu porting guide: https://developer.ubuntu.com/en/start/ubuntu-for-devices/porting-new-device/


From the site:

… You can find all the needed Android specific git repositories at https://code-review.phablet.ubuntu.com. This is a working gerrit server with everything needed to build the Android images used by Ubuntu Touch. The reference tree in there is based on AOSP (4.4.2 specifically), so make sure your device specific repositories are compatible with AOSP at least. For any Android related project at our git server, you’ll find a branch named phablet-4.4.2_r1. This branch contains a static known git HEAD and the required changes needed for Ubuntu, including our custom Android manifest.

So doesn’t this mean the Android image used by Ubuntu Touch is 4.4.2 and therefore NOT compatible with the FP1?

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That is a very good question. I don’t know actually. Ubuntu Touch uses only parts of Android, so we definitly do not need a full Android 4.4.2 port for Ubuntu Touch to use. However, this seems to indicate that we at least would need Android 4.4.2 compatible drivers for our hardware. I do not know if this is actually a requiremend for Ubuntu Touch to run or simply their way of keeping up-to-date.

But i have to say my heart sank a bit reading that passage :frowning:.

If you are interested in Ubuntu Touch, maybe you could ask that question in one Ubuntu on Air session. I did that once and they really try to answer every question there. The next is tomorrow at 16 GMT or 17 in Berlin/Amsterdam time zone.

Many on this forum people fail to recognise that the issue with the FP1 being stuck on 4.2 has much bigger implications than ‘having the latest OS or Apps’. The FP1(U) is stuck on Android 4.2 because the drivers are not available. The drivers not being available also means no alternative OS will be available. Read the impressions of the FP1(U) on the xda developer forums, developers are quickly losing interest in the FP1 as a platform.

Having root access without drivers is similar to being given access to a car. But then you find out you’re not allowed to use the steering wheel, or the brakes, or the tires. You still have acess to the car, it’s just that you can’t do anything to change it.

That is actually unrelated, but root access enables us to use the excellent Xposed framework or Titanium Backups for example. And the open bootloader makes it easy to flash Ubuntu OS or Cyanogen, if they become avaible sometimes ;-).

I am fully aware of the implications. I do not want to be so pessimistic and try to focus on solutions, not problems.

Four days ago you said:

Today you said:

These statements are logically inconsistent. Unless you have become fully aware of the driver implications in the last few days.

I am approaching this as a realist not a pessimist. Avoiding the issue and side stepping does not really help.

Dear @for83, i do not like the way you are handling this discussion. It feels you are doing personal attacks on my reasoning in trying to find logical inconsistencies in my posts.

You are accusing my of a) side stepping and b) logically inconsistency. I do need see why you do this, and it certainly not helps in validating your points. I can put it simply: It never stated porting is possible, i said should as it was in my best knowledge. While it is still unclear if porting is possible, the guide i posted earlier today has only be released two three days ago, before that, is was a simple Wiki page stating it will be released soon. You can believe me on that or ask Alan Pope or David Calle of Ubuntu. So at the time of writing my post, it was not clear that current versions of Ubuntu Touch are based on Android 4.4. In fact older versions used Cyanogenmod 10, which is based on Android 4.1.

Touch/Porting (zuletzt geändert am 2015-02-20 13:57:49 durch davidc3)

I completely fail to see a logical inconsistence here and think you are cherry-picking 2 sentences given in reply to different statements just to devalue my points or opinion. Let me say that clear: This community is so full of great people that i see absolute no need in further discussing this with you if you keep on playing like you did.

It is a forum i like to go, were we try to help each other and engage with Fairphones ideas. We are critical here, but we argue causes not persons and in most cases, that works very well. I think i made my point pretty clear.


Here is pretty extensive review of Ubuntu for Phones by Jono Bacon. It is a bit biased, since Jono was Community Manager at Canonical (makers of Ubuntu) for some years. But it gives you a great impression.

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There must be drivers for Android 4.4.2 because there is a Kitkat port of Cyanogen Mod running on the FP1. So there is everything one needs, if one has the ability to port Ubuntu.


It seems very orderly, but it feels like the first Windows Mobile devices from the early 2000s must have felt. There is NO eye candy. NOTHING. Does it even have a wallpaper option? From what Jono Bacon shows, Ubuntu phone looks REALLY boring!

The article you linked to says:

“This is basically the same rom as the KK build I do for the Wiko Stairway with a few FP1 changes (esp of course the kernel, magnetometer service, other minor differences). It uses a blob from the Wiko mtk-ril.so as the original FP1 blob crashes the rild.” (where rild obviously means build).

The Wiko Stairway uses a MT6589 - this is why the build was possible It is also why various things with that CyanogenMod build will not work with the FP (video encoding / decoding, camera etc). It is the phone equivalent of installing an OS on one computer and then moving the hard disk to another ‘similar’ computer and being content with the result.

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