1. 51

They mention that their OS is open-source but it seems you need to join a wait list to get an access to the code.

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      Nice idea…. but for 1/8th the price….

      1. 4

        1/8th is a bit extreme but for a third or half, maybe…

        1. 3

          Not really. “feature phones” (what this thing claims to be) are at least 1/8th the price of this thing.

          1. 8

            I don’t think this targets the same market. It seems more for tech hipsters looking for a boutique phone that’s slick and stylish while also helping them reduce their constantly connected lifestyle.

            I have been casually looking at feature phones for exactly that reason, actually. Most of the higher end ones that I was realistically considering come in around this price range.

            I don’t think this one is on the table for me, not because of price, but because it’s physically massive for what it is. At 143mm x 55mm, it’s huge. I don’t need a Zoolander phone but if I’m ditching my iPhone I want something smaller for sure.

          2. 1

            But do they have the same quality, replaceable battery and an open source OS?

    2. 12

      Oh my, those are some magic words right there. I wonder how it will be fatally flawed and disappoint.

      1. 16

        The price might be one issue: It will be retailing for $369. Compare that to Nokia feature phones that cost 20 Euros.

        1. 5

          I guess it really is a “premium feature phone”, which is another word for being expensive.

          1. 7

            On the other hand Nokia has been doing mobile phones for years and already had an infrastructure for building them. While this company seems to be doing everything from square zero. IMO this justifies the price.

            1. 4

              It might, but the thing is with that price it is nearly guaranteed a flop. Who would want to spend that amount of money on a feature phone? Like I wish them well and I think it is a cool idea, but I couldn’t justify the price for anything.

            2. 3

              That explains it, but it doesn’t legitimize it. I could sell you a feature phone for $5000000 that would arrive in 20 years, because I currently have no idea how to build one, and it will take a while to find out.

        2. 1

          I’m using one of those Nokia phones, for 8 years to be exact.

          One thing I don’t expect this “new” feature phone to match is the battery life of my 8 year old one (3-4 weeks).

          Considering the progress in battery technology and microprocessors, bundled with an eInk display, I would demand at least 4-6 months of battery life without charging.

    3. 14

      I love this, the screen is a cool idea, but I am struggling to talk myself into it, even without taking cost into account, and even as a person who likes shiny nerd things that then sit in a drawer.

      I am in the target market for this sort of thing. I don’t use social media on my phone, or email. I don’t like devices with pointless tracking features. I don’t even have google play installed on my phone.

      However over the years the smartphone has become a swiss army knife for me, rather than an annoyance. I just don’t install social media, and turn off all notifications.

      Things I don’t want to leave behind:
      • TOTP app (could be done on mudita I guess)
      • Maps - osmand is like having a little pocket atlas on you at all times. I don’t even use navigation, but I do use the map.
      • Contacts syncing, there is no way I am re-entering everything into this phone.
        • If there were a way to sync via USB I could live with that- there is
      Things I do all the time that I could leave behind (but I don’t see why I would want to):
      • Signal, XMPP et al
      • Unit conversion. Metric to imperial. Temperature. Weight etc
        • Could be done on this phone
      • Calculator
        • Could (should?!?) be done on this phone
      • Currency
        • Hard to do on this phone without price updates
      • Impromptu notepad/drawing pad
        • I prefer paper but the best notepad is the one you have on you
      • Camera
        • See above. I don’t like phone cameras but it has its uses.

      I also don’t see why they are focusing on music so much when there is no SD card slot, it seems.

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        I’ve seen a similar device advertised on Instagram and the comments on those ads (which are just sponsored posts, so they have comments and such) explain why I don’t see anything like this taking off. Nearly every commenter is enthusiastic but identifies one or two dealbreakers, and they’re all different. One person would buy it if it included email, another person wants directions (but maps are optional), another (like you) wants maps (but directions are optional), someone else needs a camera, yet another wants to be able to read books on it, and so on. I’ve seen a couple people who even require social media, but they want a stripped-down experience, just messaging for example.

        In order for the phone to have a broad market appeal, at least if the comments are to be trusted, the manufacturer would have to effectively turn the device into a modern smart phone. The E-ink screen alone probably condemns it to niche-product status because it can’t do photos and video (and I say this as someone who loves reading E-ink).

        I think the reason we settled on smart phones (and convergence in general) is that the most efficient way to serve a diverse market is to offer a product that contains flexible and extensive hardware and can therefore be adapted to do many things (via apps).

        A phone like the one here might work as a niche device for a handful of enthusiasts, but that means it’s always going to be expensive and the economics are unlikely to work for the manufacturer in the long term.

      2. 3

        The page says they support contacts syncing. “You can easily sync your contacts with the Google Account or iCloud”.

        1. 1

          Ah I missed that! It’s also cool how you can write messages from your laptop.

    4. 5

      The Mudita phone is huge for the few things it does, isn’t it? it’s almost as big as my Samsung Galaxy S8. In particular, the Mudita is ~5 cm thicker that the S8. That’s gonna feel bulky in the pocket of my jeans.

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        I thought you’d made a mistake here, from the photos I’d assumed it was relatively small. That was part of its appeal to me.

        Nope, it is indeed massive. My TV remote is not far off this size.

        1. 3

          Exactly. I made the same mistake and thought it was a small, handy phone. Not so. It’s big and bulky (and expensive).

    5. 4

      IMO if you’re going to spend almost 400$ for a distraction-free phone, the Punkt is more likely to get my vote.

      1. 2

        I’m not sure if Punkt has a 4G offering at the moment?

        1. 2

          The MP02 is their 4G phone. It retails for 349 USD at the present time.

    6. 3

      I noticed “digitally signed updates”; does anyone know if installing custom OS might be supported or is going to be completely blocked?

      1. 1

        They seem to take pride in stating this.. so I’m going to assume it’s a device you pay a lot for but never actually own:

        The MuditaOS gets digitally signed updates to make sure no one can alter it, which is a unique feature for a classic phone.

    7. 3

      Does anyone know of a homebrew version of this?

    8. 2

      They mention that their OS is open-source but it seems you need to join a wait list to get an access to the code.

      Then, change the title. Life is too short for fake open-source. We have arrived at the point where anything less than source-in-hand is probably a lie.

    9. 2

      I used a Motorola F3 well into the smart phone era. It was a feature phone designed for the India market with an E-Ink display and a solid 1 week battery life; it looked neat and was pretty much indestructible. It would be a great second phone for the weekend when you might want to disconnect (but still be reachable in an emergency). I actually tried to resuscitate it recently, but there isn’t much 2G GSM service left in my area.

    10. 1

      I thought I had seen something like this before and was able to dig it up https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/light-phone-2.

      For me, the unique thing is the open-source OS. I am totally game if there is not the whole, here is the source code of the OS but you cannot really tinker with certain parts of the phone because we have these other packages locked down or your not able to flash your own build at all.

      The massive bonus is the e-ink displays on minimal devices. It’s great for the eyes and batteries, I am def the target market but there is a lot of other folks outside of tech who value the minimalism and dig e-ink displays. But the price isn’t going to make sense for them, the price would be worth it for me if it were truely a free and open source phone.

    11. 1

      This brings back memories of Motofone F3. It’s still my favourite phone to this day.

    12. 1

      The Mudita Pure reminds me of the Motorola Motofone F3: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motorola_Fone . The Motofone F3 also had an E-Ink display. I would consider buying a Mudita Pure but not at that price. I purchased my Motofone in 2008 for 26,95 EUR. I am not willing to accept the Mudita Pure price tag of 349 EUR when I can buy an iPhone SE for 479 EUR.