July Update: biggest update in months!

CUBE News Pinebook Pro Pinecil PinePhone

I cannot remember the last time I had this much to report. With so many announcements and highlights, I ran out of time and didn’t cover a handful of topics that happened this month. If I find the time, I’ll make a complimentary post later this month to cover the outstanding topics. Before we get into it, I’d also like to thank JF for his contribution to the text.

The big announcement of the month is that we’re introducing the PinePhone Convergence Package and that postmarketOS Community Edition (CE) pre-orders open today. The Convergence Package features a PinePhone with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of eMMC flash storage as well as a USB-C dock tailored for the PinePhone. 

This month we’re also unveiling the Pinecil RISC-V soldering iron and reintroducing the PineCube (formerly CUBE) FOSS IP camera into our product line.

There’s plenty of ground to cover, so let’s get to it.

TL;DR for this month 

  • We’re trying out a new shipping arrangement to EU with postmarketOS CE; expect it to benefit end-users in Europe
  • We are presently unable to ship any devices to Russia or India (doesn’t apply to SBCs & peripherals)
  • PinePhone postmarketOS CE pre-orders open today! 
  • Introducing PinePhone Convergence Package with postmarketOS CE featuring 3GB RAM/ 32GB eMMC and a USB-C dock for $199; available alongside regular PinePhone postmarketOS CE for $149
  • PinePhone spare battery charger and protective tempered glass are now in PINE Store
  • The PinePhone can now achieve 100hrs standby time without modem; over 24hrs with modem enabled (!)
  • PinePhone state of software, including postmarketOS, Manjaro, and Mobian
  • Pinebook Pro – finally good news from *BSD community; FreeBSD is coming together
  • Lomiri (formerly Unity8) running on Manjaro on Pinebook Pro
  • No (OG) Pinebooks being produced right now; we’ll wait for component prices to come down
  • Next round of Pinebook Pro pre-orders at the end of July/ beginning of August
  • Pinebook Pro dock is being evaluated by developers; it will be a little longer before we show it
  • Pinebook -to- Pinebook Pro-esque upgrade kit is finally coming soon  
  • PineTime software and development status; working towards an early adopters edition [authored by JF]
  • Pinecil is a TS100 compatible RISC-V soldering iron. Improved device ergonomics and firmware from original TS100 firmware creator Ben Brown; coming late September for $24.99
  • PineCube (formerly CUBE) going into production soon, with improved hardware specs; available in 6-8 weeks for ~$24.99
  • Personal note: I’ll start getting back to your emails now that I’ve got some spare time.

Housekeeping

Let’s start with a handful of shipping notices. With the upcoming postmarketOS CE we’ll introduce a new shipping arrangement for the EU (please see the PinePhone section of this post for details), which we hope will result in significantly reduced shipping costs for end-users. We’re always looking for the best arrangements and new ways to deliver our hardware, and we hope that this route will eventually grow to encompass other devices. We will have more news concerning servicing EU end-users in coming months, so please stay tuned and subscribe to this blog for further updates. On the subject of shipping, we also have bad news for our end-users in Russia and India. We are currently not able to fulfil postmarketOS CE PinePhone nor upcoming Pinebook Pro orders to said destinations since there currently aren’t any available shipping routes for these devices at our disposal. 

In anticipation of someone writing “but I can get product X into Russia/India using service Y”, let me elaborate on the situation a little further. We have been informed that we’re not allowed to ship devices with the encryption capabilities of the PineTab, PinePhone and Pinebook Pro into the Russian Federation. Shipping these devices could (and has multiple times in the past) lead to confiscation of the devices at the border by customs and even to being outright banned or barred from entering the country. There are avenues for us to explore in this regard, however, and we will do so in the coming weeks. Once a suitable shipping option is found, shipping to Russia and India will be reinstated immediately. I’ll make sure you’ll be notified of this as it happens.

Lastly, we will be looking into improving the PINE Store layout and shopping experience in the coming weeks. While we’re considering the store’s potential layout and structure, we’d appreciate hearing your views and ideas on how we can improve its front-end. I deem the comments section of the blog not the best place for this discussion, so I have opened a thread in the community section of the forum where we can exchange ideas. I am really looking forward to hearing from you.

PinePhone

The PinePhone UBports Community Edition campaign has now come to an end. Earlier this month we donated our financial contribution to the UBports Foundation and became listed as one of the Premium Sponsors. We would like to thank the entire UBports community – and especially Marius, Dalton and Ricardo – for their work and cooperation during the past couple of months (Editor’s note: Thank you to PINE64 and the community for making this possible! – Dalton).

I must admit that despite the difficult circumstances that surrounded this campaign – everything from manufacturing to shipping – this has been a valuable exercise for us as a project. We have learnt a lot from the problems we encountered, and as a result of this we will be trying out new shipping strategies as well as altering how we tackle shipping periods. As I already mentioned earlier in this blog entry, we are setting up a warehouse in the EU (Poland), which will service European customers. This warehouse will, at least presently, only be used for PinePhones. If this setup proves to be as convenient and beneficial to the community as we think, it may end up hosting our remaining devices in the future. Using this new shipping arrangement, EU customers will not be asked to pay import tax, but rather the PinePhone price, $20 shipping charge as well as local VAT. Please note that this is a trial – something we’re testing out with this Community Edition production-run – and we may choose to fall back on previously established shipping arrangements in the future. Shipping arrangements for users in the US and rest of the world remain unchanged. 

Before moving to this month’s big announcements, I’d like to thank all of you for your patience – I know that it has been a long wait for some of you (and that many of you are still waiting). If you are just getting your UBports CE PinePhone now, then please consider joining the dedicated Ubuntu Touch on PinePhone telegram group.

Cleverly reworked box for the PinePhone Convergence Package

Pre-orders for postmarketOS CE open today and I am happy to announce that alongside the standard PinePhone CE hardware configuration priced at $149, we are launching the PinePhone Convergence Package. The PinePhone Convergence Package features a PinePhone with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of eMMC storage as well as a compatible USB-C dock. The dock that is included with the Convergence Package is capable of delivering power to the phone via USB-C power-in (3A 5V), outputting digital video via HDMI, 10/100 Ethernet connectivity and two USB 2.0 ports (for e.g. external storage / mouse and keyboard). The spec bump and inclusion of the dock comes at the price of $199. We presently do not know whether the Convergence Package will become a permanent option, something we’ll do on occasion or simply a one-off (although the last option is unlikely). It obviously largely depends on people’s response to this PinePhone variant and how much demand we see for it.

Both the regular (2GB RAM/16GB eMMC) and Convergence Package (3GB RAM/32GB eMMC) postmarketOS CE PinePhone versions will ship with a mainboard designated 1.2a. The ‘a’ in the mainboard’s designation refers to a minor alteration, allowing for better power delivery negotiation (which will result in improved charging performance under some circumstances), as well as the possibility to connect USB devices to the phone and output video to an external monitor.

Head over to the PINE Store to pre-order your postmarketOS CE PinePhone.

PinePhone running postmarketOS docked by Martijn Braam

While we’re discussing this topic, let me tackle the elephant in the room and acknowledge that a design flaw in PCBA rev. 1.1 and 1.2 prevents this functionality (please see relevant documentation related to CC pin) on Braveheart and UBports CE phones. This issue was originally identified, and the fix for it was found, by Ondřej (megi) Jirman. His work on the  anx7688 makes USB-C features, such as PD charging, video output or other functions of the docking station work. Thankfully the fix to the problem – the removal of two small components from the PCBA – is relatively simple to perform for someone with good soldering skills. At the same time I recognize that many community members, myself included, are not capable of completing this operation. To this end, we will set up a chain of local (in your geographic area) workshops, makerspaces or individual technicians capable of performing this fix, so you can send your 1.1 / 1.2 phone to them to complete the repair. 

Quick Look at the required CC fix on PCBA 1.1 / 1.2. By Mozzwald

When we sold Braveheart PinePhones we made a promise to the early adopters that we won’t leave them behind, so I’d like to extend the offer for fixing the CC pin issue to all Braveheart owners too. More information will follow about the process later this month – I have to figure out the smartest way to set up the infrastructure about it first. In my dedicated post on this topic, there will be a sign-up for individuals and shops who would like to make their services available. So, if you’re handy with a soldering iron then please subscribe to the blog and watch for a post later this month.   

In other hardware news, there are now two new PinePhone items available in the PINE Store. We have a tempered glass screen protector (it’s very good, I use it on my phone) and an external PinePhone battery charger. The charger makes it possible for you to charge a PinePhone battery externally, so you do not need to disassemble your phone to charge a spare battery unit. Both items come in at $4.99 and I suggest you at least pick up the glass screen protector alongside one of the phone cases for your phone. Both items can be found in the PinePhone spare parts section. One last little bit of hardware news I’d like to let you know about is that now, with access to vendors in China becoming easier, we have resumed exploring the creation of an external keyboard for the PinePhone. To be precise, we have approached a vendor and began exploring our options for a slide-out keyboard akin to those used on the Nokia N900. If the talks come to fruition then I’ll make sure to ask for your opinions – as I did with the Pinebook Pro – regarding the keyboard layout and features (no, there won’t be multiple layouts).

Battery charger and tempered glass protector

I have already used up all the time and space reserved for the PinePhone section in this blog, but I feel strongly compelled to cover some software updates. For starters, I know many of you are curious about the software status of the postmarketOS build that will ship with the postmarketOS CE PinePhone. The build will include a phenomenal out-of-the-box user setup and installer, which will not only allow you to fully encrypt your eMMC storage but also enable services, such as SSH. Our friends from postmarketOS have posted a very detailed post detailing the state of software. I strongly suggest to head over to their blog and have a read. 

postmarketOS initial user setup. By Martijn Braam

The other big software news of the month concerns the amazing work of Samuel Holland on Crust advanced power management; the PinePhone is now able to idle for ~100hrs (that’s not a typo, I wrote 100) using as little as 110mW in deep sleep. This is, of course, with the modem switched off. With the modem ON, you can expect the PinePhone to achieve an idle run-time of approximately 24hrs, which we feel brings the device firmly into the realm of what we’d consider a daily-driver smartphone being capable of. 

The second bit of software news I’d like to cover is Mobian’s implementation of camera functionality on the PinePhone. This implementation builds on work by Ondřej (megi) Jirman, who has been working on both the ov5640 rear and gc2145 front cameras.  For those of you who do not know, Mobian is a dedicated Debian distribution for the PinePhone which I happen to be a fan of. The camera implementation is rather slow and the photos aren’t the best quality, but what is important is that we’ve seen this goal being achieved in a relatively short period of time. Somewhat noteworthily, I’d also like to note that I’ve had no problems using GPS on Mobian, and even did some navigating on foot with phone-in-hand finding my desired destinations and best routes. I’m really impressed.

Camera now works on Mobian

Lastly, I want to give a shout-out to the Manjaro team and their work on the PinePhone over this past month. Manjaro are such an integral part of our community and one of the main driving forces behind end-user facing development. That said, perhaps because of their dedication to the Pinebook Pro hardware and the time they put into it, their Alpha OS images for the PinePhone were lacking in comparison to some of the dedicated cutting-edge distributions. This, however, is a thing of the past. It appears Manjaro have now settled on Phosh as their default UI (as opposed to Plasma Mobile) and achieved a lot of software parity with other distributions. Their most recent OS image, at the time of writing, has LTE functionality, places phone calls, has the newest Phosh features (including auto-scaling) and even apparently the newly released Crust power management improvements. I know there are many fans of Manjaro in the community, so I suggest you give their most recent pre-release a go.

Pinebook Pro

We know that many of you are waiting for the next Pinebook Pro batch to open. I currently cannot offer you a precise date for when the next batch will become available, but we’re working towards starting pre-orders at the end of this month. The next production run will be produced by a new factory, which we are still in talks with. Therefore, it’s taking a little longer than usual. Regardless, we’re set to start producing Pinebook Pros in August, so you will not have to wait for much longer to get into the queue for your unit.

The Pinebook Pro has seen quite a few software developments over the past month. For starters, we finally have some progress coming from the *BSD communities. Although the Pinebook Pro has already been shown running *BSD months ago – and NetBSD has been available for install for some time – there haven’t been any guides or tutorials on how to get Open or FreeBSD working until now. In fact, very little information about Open and FreeBSD has been made available on our forum or Wiki. I believe this is about to change, however, as nrgmilk – a FreeBSD developer (who also booted FreeBSD on the PinePhone!!!!) – tweeted that FreeBSD 13.0 now boots on the Pinebook Pro with LCD output. Just a few days later, Vincent Milum Jr. shared information that he successfully implemented big.LITTLE support for the Pinebook Pro on FreeBSD 13.0. I have been told that while there is still a lot of work to be done on FreeBSD, and indeed all *BSDs, the movement we saw this month may be the breaking point which will propel work on our platform forward.

FreeBSD booted on Pinebook Pro by nrgymilk

In other software news, we saw Manjaro booted with Lomiri (formerly Unity8) on the Pinebook Pro. While this is fun to see from a technological standpoint, I am mostly glad to see PINE64 as a platform facilitating the growth and cooperation of projects. Ubuntu Touch and Manjaro are fairly distant relatives of the Linux family tree, and yet they found a common (and innovative) ground to work on within the premises of our community. I am told that you can already install Lomiri alongside KDE Plasma on the Pinebook Pro if you switch to the unstable repos.

Lomiri on Manjaro via Manjaro Linux

This month we’ve also seen the first proper graphical U-Boot implementation on the Pinebook Pro thanks to the work of Samuel Dionne-Riel from NixOS. Samuel writes that this version of U-Boot still has some issues with booting the most current mainline kernels (5.6+) – including Manjaro’s Pinebook Pro kernel (5.7) – but this is surely something that can and will be fixed in nearby future. This is an important step in Pinebook Pro software evolution, as it makes booting and installing alternative OSes from SD, USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and NVMe trivial. I am including Samuel’s quick video showcasing the U-Boot video init working below. 

U-Boot visual output via Samuel Dionne-Riel

We have sent the Pinebook Pro dock to a handful of partner project developers for evaluation. The process of enabling all of the dock’s functionality on the Pinebook Pro is ongoing, and we’re still missing video output implementation. We also want to redesign some minor bits and pieces before showing it off, so you’ll need to wait a little longer before I post a picture of a prototype we’re happy showing off publicly. I also have some news regarding the redesigned OG Pinebook. At present component prices – especially prices of LCD displays – the BOM cost of the Pinebook significantly exceeds our asking price. In other words, we’d have to significantly subsidize it, which is not something we’re willing to do with all the cost-inducing activities we engage in. Once the post-COVID19 market stabilizes and prices come down, I assure you that we will resume production of the Pinebook. 

Finishing on a positive note, we’re now moving forward with the OG Pinebook-to-Pinebook Pro-esque upgrade. The upgrade will require you to be moderately handy with a screwdriver and the command line. It involves removing the A64 board, applying the heat-dissipation material to the case bottom and lastly installing the RK3399 mainboard in the chassis. On the software side, you will have to flash new firmware to your keyboard and trackpad (similarly to how it is done on the Pinebook Pro). I’d also like to make you aware that thermal performance of the upgraded OG Pinebook – even when using a graphene layer – will be poorer than the Pinebook Pro. That said, this doesn’t entail that the thermals are bad, and kernel 5.7 and allegedly also the upcoming 5.8, improve the RK3399’s thermal profiles, so you don’t have to worry about heat-related issues under regular load. Here is a thermal test using the graphene heat-pad used in an upgraded Pinebook; please disregard the 18*C read-out and focus on the core frequencies – all you need to know is that the SOC throttles at 72*C. We aim to have the upgrade kit available in a few weeks time in the PINE Store. 

OG pinebook with the upgrade installed

PineTime [authored by JF

Here is the latest news from the Pinetime community!

First, a big announcement: PINE64 has decided to move towards an early adopter edition of the PineTime, and I’m really excited that the community chose my project as the first FOSS firmware to be flashed at the factory for this early adopter edition! Until now, the Pinetime dev kits were programmed at the factory with what we call the stock firmware – it implements most of the features of the watch but it is closed source. Moreover, the flash memory is read-protected to prevent anyone from reading the binary file from the memory.

When this early adopter edition is available, you’ll enjoy the result of months of work by the PineTime community (I’m not the only one working on this firmware, but I still have to find a better name for it…), and you’ll be able to hack, debug and flash your watch more easily than before because you won’t have to disable the memory protection.

The firmware is still under development but it already integrates basic features like displaying the time, synchronizing the date and time with a companion application on a smartphone, and receiving notifications. Right now we are in the process of testing and debugging this firmware as much as we can, and everyone is welcome to come and help us in this exciting task!

Another great achievement for the project is the development of Over The Air (OTA) update capability. Not only are we now able to update the firmware running on the Pinetime over BLE, but we can also switch from one firmware to another! We’ve successfully ran a demo showing an update from my firmware to Lup Yuen‘s.The OTA feature is still experimental, but it gives really promising results!

PineTime OTA update via Bluetooth

In a previous community update, Lukasz announced that Amazfish – a companion app running on SailfishOS and on the PinePhone – was able to communicate with the PineTime. Since then, Gadgetbridge (Android) joined the team. And, last but not least, Lup is also working on a companion app and one of his goals is to make it run on the Pinephone.

PineTime receiving notifications via Gadgetbridge

What else happened in the community? A lot of work has been done on the heart-rate sensor and the accelerometer and power consumption, with very good results from ATCWatch. I’ve seen interesting discussions about the design of a dev cradle that would make it easier to connect the pinetime to the SWD debugger. There are also a lot of people interested in Python development thanks to WaspOS, and the community keeps on welcoming new developers that are excited to learn and work on Pinetime.

Pinecil

Let me start by thanking all those who played along last month and took a shot at my riddle. I must admit I was quite surprised how quickly people correctly identified what the Pinecil is. I was also blown away by the accuracy with which the clues were deciphered. Next time I’ll know to make my riddles more cryptic and difficult to decipher. Before we proceed to talk about the device itself, let me just list the names of the three winners (first to correctly identify device type; first to accurately identify SOC type; first to correctly identify all clues). If your name/ handle is on this list then please email me directly (l.erecinski@pine64.org) using the email registered on this blog. The first three production Pinecils are going to: 

  • Andrew Stoehr 
  • Jonas
  • Ignas Kiela

The Pinecil is a RISC-V based soldering iron – it is inspired and compatible with the widely acclaimed TS100, which is used by tinkerers and makers worldwide. The Pinecil maintains compatibility with TS100 tips and delivers performance identical to its muse, but at a community friendly price of $24.99. Having spoken to, and gathered feedback from, people who are experts in the field, we have made a handful of improvements to the general design and functionality of the soldering iron. In terms of ergonomics, compared to the original TS100 design, the Pinecil is more comfortable to hold and features a grippy rubberised texture where you place your fingers. It is also slightly longer and can be powered via either USB-C or a barrel jack. This makes the soldering iron more versatile, especially if you intend to use it for in-field repairs. The USB-C connection also includes embedded UART, i2c, SPI, and USB signals for ease of development. We know some of you want to play Tetris on your soldering irons … for everyone else, yes, it’s actually a thing. Speaking more seriously however, this means you can use the Pinecil as a platform to create something completely different based on this platform, such as a drill or a multimeter.

Pinecil renders and mockup

Obviously the one crucial bit of having the Pinecil actually functional is having software support for the device. This effectively means porting an existing firmware to the RISC-V platform. Thankfully we’ve been able to interest Ben Brown – the person behind the original TS100 firmware – to take a look at the Pinecil. Sending him a prototype just a little over a month ago, all we hoped for was for him to take a look at it and evaluate the design’s feasibility. Suffice to say Ben exceeded our expectations by practically porting all essential functions to RISC-V, thereby making the Pinecil functional. 

As of today, the following is working: 

  •  PWM tip drive
  •  OLED
  •  Accelerometer (ish – needs work somewhere)
  •  FreeRTOS
  •  Basics of all of the code

Still needs work:

  • Tune PWM timings
  • FLASH for saving settings
  • DMA for I2C (to make screen updates smoother)

Pinecil hardware running (prototype)

We hope that you guys are as excited about the Pinecil as we are. We are currently aiming to make the Pinecil available for purchase sometime in the next 3 months. I will make sure to keep you up-to-date on how the project is progressing until then.

PineCube

This will likely come as a bit of a surprise to many of you, but production of the PineCube (originally CUBE) open source IP camera will be starting soon. Some of you may recognise this project as it has been well over a year in the making – we first announced it at FOSDEM 2019. The thing that originally held the PineCube back was a lack of camera integration in the software. Other projects took priority and, eventually, the project was shelved until we had the time and free resources to tackle it again. With all major disasters now behind us for this year (*knocks on wood 3 times*), and with all the big devices shipping, we feel the time has come to revisit the much anticipated PineCube.

The PineCube is a compact and completely custom built IP camera that runs mainline Linux. It features an m12 mount, which accommodates various lenses for different use-cases (wide-angle, zoom, fisheye, etc.,), and it comes equipped with IR LEDs for night vision. The small device also bundles a microphone, GPIO, USB 2.0, 10/100 Ethernet, Bluetooth and WiFi. It’s worth mentioning that the PineCube can be passively powered over Ethernet. All these features allow for a high degree of versatility, making the PineCube suitable for a wide array of use-cases, ranging from a baby or security camera to a drone or robot camera.

A look at the new PineCube

Since its original announcement in 2019, a number of changes have been made to PineCube’s core hardware. The original camera module has been switched out for the OV5640 5MPixel sensor used in the PinePhone and PineTab. Progress made on the OV5640 on the big devices will hence directly translate to the PineCube. The IR LED array has also been altered to allow for better and further-reaching night vision. Perhaps most importantly, however, the SoC has been upgraded to the S3 (up from S3L), which is paired with 128MB of DDR2 RAM. The upgraded RAM as well as the Cortex-A9 running at up-to 1Ghz make for quite a powerful platform. 

In the coming weeks I’ll be reaching out to developers and project maintainers to get early PineCube units into their hands. We have commissioned the factory to start production and been informed that the lead-time is approximately 6-8 weeks. We expect to be able to offer the PineCube for $24.99.Let me know if you’re planning to get a PineCube and what you’ll use it for in the comments section. I expect to have more updates for you about this project in a month’s time. 

Personal note

This has been a busy period for us – and I’ve also been working on my own PINE64-related project that I’ll be unveiling soon (shameless plug) – and my inbox is literally filled with queries from community members, media and potential partner projects. I’d like to apologize to you all for being so unresponsive and at the same time promise to start going through the pile of correspondence starting today. 

That concludes this month’s update – I am looking forward to your comments!

119 thoughts on “July Update: biggest update in months!

  1. Absolutely amazing!

    Just a small question towards the PinePhone bundle as it wasn’t mentioned. There is no change in the allocated $10 for postmarketOS, is there?

    Incredible effort and truly outstanding progress from Pine64! Congratulations!

    1. There is no change – both regular PinePhone and the convergence package sales translate to $10 donated to pmOS per unit 🙂

  2. Would love to see a weather resistant case designed and launched alongside the PineCube; would make for excellent and inexpensive home security cameras, and they’re especially exciting with PoE. Also looking forward to the next round of PineBook Pro preorders, since I missed the last round. And the Pinecil is very cool, what a fantastic price for such an iron. Can’t wait to order one.

    1. Yes, and a motorized gimbal case would be cool too … so you can control it via GPIO remotely.
      Perhaps an action-cam type case too?

    2. This would be very clever, and I was thinking something similar.
      On the other hand, you can always go to a local makerspace and 3D print something.
      (May not withstand being submerged into water but you can certainly make it rain and weather proof)

  3. Does the desoldering of the two components cause any side-effects?
    Was there a reason they were included in the first place?

      1. That’s so crazy; extra components that didn’t need to be there… Almost like there needed to be something to fix!

  4. That’s great news about the PineTime! I’ve been excited for it for a while now. I was just over on the Rebble Alliance discord server to see about any news of RebbleOS coming to the PineTime, but it looks like they say that it doesn’t have enough RAM to run it effectively. Is there any chance that this will change either in this upcoming build, or in future builds?

    1. I would very much like to know, after I purchased the ubports edition because there was no talk of better hardware. this should have been communicated earlier.

  5. What about the non-existent support for faulty PBP you shipped in the first two batches?
    Also, now that you apparently have some time to spare, how many reports of faulty PBPs have you received so far?
    How many of those reports have been resolved so far?

  6. I have a DLink security camera that I bought just a couple of years ago and now it won’t handle dates > 2020. No firmware update in sight. I don’t feel like reverse-engineering something that is obsolete and proprietary. I am seriously considering replacing the board with a PineCube at only $24 and then it’s completely upgradeable and customizable. If it works well, then I might consider putting some more cameras around if I can work out decent enclosures for outside exposure that can handle down to -40 C/F.

  7. I’ve been eagerly waiting for the PineCube! I’m not much of a dev, but I’m not afraid to run specific instrustions on linux to get things to work. I would love to use it as a front door cam and/or watch my dogs with it when I’m away from home. I’ve already done the latter with a rockpro64 but I would love to have a dedicated device.

  8. Wow, what an update. You guys have been busy! I’m pleasantly surprised by the Pinecil and I think I’m going to have to order one when they are available.

    When the Pinecube camera is available, will there be limits on how many you can order? I don’t want a ton but I probably want to get several to play with.

    1. There will certainly be a restriction on how many units can be ordered at a time – at least initially.
      If the demand isn’t through the roof, then reach out to me when the PineCube shows up in the store and I may be able to help you (or anyone else) who wants to pick up 3-4 units. But only if the demand isn’t super high – otherwise it would be unfair to others.

  9. Hey thank you for the update. I can see myself getting a PineTime and Pinecil in the medium-distant future.

    Any news on the PineTablet? I’m looking forward to the next batch. Hope you guys could give an estimate on that.

  10. I second that. Many outdoor cameras force you to use a proprietary mobile app and don’t provide a web interface nor do they implement the RTSP standard or any of the other common protocols.

  11. Szkoda, że nie wygrałem choć moja wersja matematyczna była lepsza 😉 Ale gratuluję zwycięzcom.

    Poprosze o dopisek w sprawach poruszanych pod wpisem:

    a) czy będzie możliwość kupienia plecków z 5Ah akumulatorem? (razem z otworem na zamocowanie smyczy by można było nosic telefon na szyi) , niektórzy mówili o etui chroniące przed wilgocią (nie wodą)

    b) czy rozważacie router o którym rozpisywali się komentatorzy? (rózne zasilanie offgrid, szubki ethernet, obsługa diód lub małego wyświetlacza, 5 przycisków , odkręcane anteny itd)

    c) współpraca z mycroft by powstał mark II na platformie pine64

    Bardzo mnie cieszy klawiatura w telefonie. Jedna uwaga. Do czego bedzie używana? Moim zdaniem terminal PgUp Down, vi (, Home, end), programowanie (znaki interpunkcyjne nawiasy itd) , mc (bo wielu używa) i oczywiście ssh. Nawet na prezentacji powyżej widać, że alt+F4 do zamknięcia programu, Home i PgUp Shift+strzałki jest używany. Nie uciekniecie od klawiatury innej niż wszystkie. Klawiatury dla geeków a nie dla sekretarek.
    Ale sam pomysl klawiatury jest po prostu REWELACYJNY

    ——
    Congratulations to the winners.

    I’d like to ask for a note on the issues raised under the entry:

    a) will it be possible to buy backpacks with 5Ah battery? (together with a hole for attaching the lanyard so that you can wear the phone around your neck) , some people talked about a case to protect against moisture (not water)

    (b) Are you considering a router that has been commented on? (different offgrid power supply, ethernet tips, diode or small display operation, 5 buttons, unscrewed antennas, etc)

    c) working with mycroft to create a mark II on the pine64 platform

    a revolutionary idea with a keypad for the phone

  12. How well do I understand you will be able to buy a phone in Poland without a huge shipping fee and without VAT?

    1. That’s correct. EU customers will NOT have to pay import tax, but rather local VAT and obviously cover shipping costs (~$20).

  13. I’m so excited for the PineCube, I’m going to get a bunch of them for all sorts of things, astrophotography, stereo camera experiments, random cat camera… I’m probably going to want like more than half a dozen! The little thing seems so useful!

  14. Cube: Put down another person interested in its possibilities as a security camera, especially if some form of PoE works.

    The spec description mentions GPIO ports, if there are i2c or spi capabilites multiplexed with them there are some interesting possibilities. It would be interesting to pair the cube’s built in camera with one or more external serial cameras (something like an Arducam?) to increase coverage (Cube camera taking video, serial cameras (is the USB2 port a host or device?) taking frequent stills pointed in other, less important, directions). On the other hand, for the Cube’s projected price, the serial cameras may be more expensive than just adding more cube’s (but then some kind of network hub would have to be added as well as having to deal with greatly increased power distribution over the Ethernet cables).

    Also considering using the GPIO to try to synchronize multiple Cubes to allow an inexpensive stereo or 360 degree camera array.

  15. Responding to : “With so many announcements and highlights, I ran out of time and didn’t cover a handful of topics that happened this month. ”

    It might help readability (especially of comment threads) if you were to break the post into multiple posts on individual topics. I think I understand the rationale for having selected a single “news day” per month, but I don’t really see the benefit of rolling all the announcements into a single post.

    For example, today’s post might have been sent as at least 3 different, focused posts (Pinephone news, Pinebook news, and one or more for the rest of the topics depending on how much interest you thought might overlap between them). This might help the user’s to focus on what they were most interested in and also help the comments to be more focused. Instead of one heading that starts “Month Update: headlines”, someone reading the blog section would see multiple titles that addressed different products and activities. The multiple titles might also end up making web search hits more likely?

    To use myself as an example, I’m very interested in anything PinePhone related, and also have an interest in the Cube and maybe the Pencil. Pinebook news, not so much (yet).

    The amount of content wouldn’t have to change (you do an excellent job of presenting each item with the right amount of detail), just spread out over a few more topically centered postings.

    1. I see what you mean. While this may, indeed, make more sense – it would also mean that I have to sit down 2-3 times a month to write something. This would be a problem because of my schedule.

      That said, Ideally I’d like to find someone to deal with all software news + developments, and let me focus on updating people people about state of hardware, shipping and new projects. This could result in two posts a month: at the beginning on the month someone would write a round-up of software developments, and then on the 15th I’d write about community-centered things.

      1. Splitting a long text covering 3 topics into 3 shorter publications, covering each one topic only, does not really take any longer. it is just good practice 😉

  16. Any update on PineTab round 1 shipping? There is nothing on the shipping page, the page at https://www.pine64.org/contact/ is broken to show nothing (for me at least), and it’s been 5 weeks since money was collected. What was the expectation to be for that round?

  17. I’ve already bought my Convergence PinePhone. Thank you everyone working on this!

    I see that I’ll have to buy a PineTime soon too.

    <3 You guys are all awesome. Thank you!

  18. You wrote that “The PinePhone UBports Community Edition campaign has now come to an end.” Does this mean that there will never be PinePhones sold with Ubuntu Touch preinstalled any more? Because that would seem a bit odd to me. I’d like to get a couple more in the future, for my wife and my mother, when the software is stable enough. (Or get a new one with a revised motherboard for myself and give my current v1.2 PinePhone to one of my family members.)

    But I would like to support UBports when purchasing them. So what are the plans for long term PinePhone sales? I understand that the next batch will be focused on postmarketOS, and batches after that maybe on other OS’es, but when will new UBports PinePhones be available?

    1. We may run another campaign for UBports at some point in the future. Regardless, you can take ANY PinePhone and install UT on it, so there is no need for you to wait for another PinePhone UBports CE.

      1. So is the plan to keep on making CE’s for all kinds of distro’s, or will there eventually be plain/unbranded PinePhones for sale?

        I don’t really need another PinePhone right away, but in half a year or so – if the software stabilizes enough for ‘regular people’ to use – I’ll probably want to buy one or two more.

        I believe I read somewhere that you plan to keep producing PinePhones for at least five years, but what will they be like regarding software images, back covers and donations to OS projects?

  19. The N900-style keyboard is amazing news. I really hope it happens. This would be the first landscape slider keyboard on a decent phone since, er, the Motorola Photon Q, which came out a whopping 8 years ago. I still have one!

      1. I think keyboard will be similar OQO or N900 slicer idea
        but keyboard will be similar Psion5 because will have great keys.

        in Ajazz AK33 keyboard exist smalest keys (thickest) meybe using it?

      2. the problem with the Psion5-type keyboard is that it is very expensive to make. Since we cannot travel to Shenzhen currently, and therefore we cannot test and supervise progress on the creating such a keyboard.
        We’ll wait for when things are a bit better to start on this project

        1. Making a big 84 keys keyboard with mechanic keys cost 80-90zł
          this is not expensive.

          meybe first creating a normal external usb wire mechanical keyboard?

          klawiatura bez bloku numerycznego kosztuje 80-90zł to nie jest straszne drogo. Najważniejsze, że klawisze są standardowe i kupuje się je na kilogramy, sa to połówki tych zwykłych jeśli chodzi o szerokość. Trzeba by dorobić nakładki (keycaps) ale to akurat tanizna. Największy problem to zrobienie podswietleń, oprogramowania procesora itd. Ludzie chcieli by pewnie też akumulator 5Ah.
          Reasumując dlaczego nie chcecie zrobić na początek porządnej klawiatury zewnętrznej na usb dla hakerów? Więcej odbiorców, łatwiejsza produkcja. W razie czego każdy sam somie coś polutuje jak będzie potrzeba bo klawiatura jest większa. A chcecie się męczyć z niestandardową klawiaturą do komórki na którą wszyscy będa psioczyć bo jest niewygodna?

  20. Can’t wait for pinebook pro orders to open back up! Also excited for the Pinecube! I’ll setup an outdoor cam for watching wildlife around my house, as well as one in my duck house to make sure the ducks and chickens are doing well!

  21. I got my PinePhone Ubuntu Touch order in.
    Thank you.

    TL; TR (To long to remember)
    I scanned back through a couple of months to
    refresh my memory about various topics not covered this month
    May Update:
    1) Qi wireless charging status
    2) PinePhone multi OS boot loader.
    3) PinePhone 5000mAh battery case
    a) by memory a second battery issue.
    4) Will PineTime OS include Ubuntu Touch ?
    5) PineTab Expansion Options
    a) M.2 SATA SSD add-on
    b) M.2 LTE (and GPS) add-on
    c) LoRa module add-on
    d) RTL-SDR modual add-on
    June Update:
    6) PineTab 2nd batch sale with Ubuntu Touch
    Production request
    7) PinePhone CRUST (advanced power
    management)
    8) PinePhone POGO pin breakout boards
    9) OTA – Over the air update
    a) Is there an opt out choice. Part of the
    Good side of these products is not having
    updates pushed on you by some big
    corporation. It goes with privacy.
    July Update:
    10) Heads up date on next PineTab Ubuntu
    Touch sale ? Can I buy more than 1 ?

    I’ll include other comments with the product
    Sales page design link.

    1. Damn you did my job for me …
      Thanks. I will have to cover some – if not all – of these topics next month.

      1. Trzymamy za słowo 😉
        Ja czekam na klawiaturę zewnętrzną (nawet jako koncept i pytanie na forum)
        Może jakiś rysunek, swego czasu cos proponowałem. Wersja Planck jest najciekawsza.

        No i Lora jako odpowiedż na disaster.radio (a może współpraca?) czy pylife. Obie firmy w sumie chińskie

  22. Pinebook-to-Pinebook-Pro conversion:

    1. “… we’re now moving forward with the OG Pinebook-to-Pinebook Pro-esque upgrade…It involves removing the A64 board, applying the heat-dissipation material to the case bottom and lastly installing the RK3399 mainboard in the chassis…”
    a) What is an “OG Pinebook”? Why does a simple upgrade require so many–ultimately confusing–words to describe a simple process?
    b) The whole method of REFERRING to this activity needs to be simplified.

    2. Here’s a recommendation for a simple method for people who don’t own a Pinebook NOW:
    a) Sell me a Pinebook without the original board, but everything else.
    b) sell me the upgrade kit.
    c) I go to work, and get an 11″ Pinebook Pro; that’s what I *really* want.

    Isn’t this “do-able”?

    Warmest regards…

    1. Not really. However, we may in the future consider DIY kits where you choose your board. But we’ll see if this is viable – currently the BOM price of the Pinebook is higher than the asking price (due to high LCD costs), so production is on hold.
      The upgrade kit is moving forward however.

  23. Thanks a lot for updating, but there are no news about PineTab-orders we have placed some weeks ago 🙁
    Small update about when production will start/finish and shipment will start/finish should be enough 🙂
    (need to know if my PineTab will be a christmas- or an easter-gift)

    Regardes from germany

    Sebastian

    1. I’m waiting for information from the production team – once they get me up-to date on the PineTab’s production status, I’ll make sure to write a dedicated post about it. I promise.

  24. Great update about great job done! It’s really great to hear that you moved toward the slide-out keyboard with the PP, I hope you will be able to deliver soon. I still think it is a far better solution for a device that you intend to use as a phone.

    As with any great news, everybody is complaining to get even more. I’m no exception. 🙂 Do we have a chance, that the guys behind your cluster will find the time to write a post about the job they have done? To be honest I have very specific question, I would love to know if you figured out a way to distribute lode on multiple boards or you just put every distinct infrastructure element on a different board, and throw a load balancer or reverse proxy in front of it (e.g. 1 board for matrix, 1 for the site, 1 for the shop, and 1 for the haproxy in front of it all).

    Keep up the good work && Cheers

    1. I asked Matthew about writing up a post about the cluster — he said that ‘once he’s done with it’, he’ll do so.
      I’ll push no further 😉 I assume he’ll write it when the cluster setup is complete.

  25. Hi Lucasz,

    Thanks so much for taking the time to write this extensive update. I love how open you/Pine64 communicate about progress and plans, it really is a breath of fresh air in this industry.

    The PineCube seems extremely interesting to me, I’m definitely going to order a couple of those. The microphone, integrated IR/night-mode and WIFI make it perfect to use as either baby- or security-cam! I’ll probably attach a humidity/temperature sensor to it as well 🙂 Question: will you also sell these with fitting cases? That would be fantastic.

    Also, the PinePhone postmarketOS Convergence Pack looks fantastic. I’ll be holding out and keep my fingers crossed for a ‘Manjaro Convergence Pack’ for now though, hoping that will ever arrive 😉 I would instantly buy a PinePhone preloaded with Manjaro/Plasma Mobile, 3GB RAM and a USB-C dock. I already own the Braveheart edition, but the extra GB of RAM is very welcome. Also, Manjaro/Plasma Mobile is making steady progress as well. PhilM reported that he anticipated that they will release the next Plasma Mobile Alpha image (no 6) coming weekend with a (hopefully) fixed virtual keyboard and latest CRUST power management.

    All in all, thanks again for your post and all the best to you guys at Pine64 and all the community members making everything possible.
    Thomas

    1. I’m pretty sure that there will be a case eventually, there is one for the PinePhone after all and it just makes too much sense to make one for the camera.

    2. A nie dało się zrobić składanego ethernetu? Kiedyś w kilku laptopach były takie. cześć z łączeniami była stała ale ta druga się składała. Miał to mój stary laptop, teraz też czasem robią, ale nie często.
      Wtedy dok byłby płaski, a teraz ma wystający dynks . Zróbcie chowany

  26. Hi Luke,
    as re the PinePhone USB-C VCONN fix setting up a process for the less savvy solderers is brilliant.
    For those who’d like to tackle the fix it would be very helpful to assist in obtaining the NCP334FCT2G replacements.
    They are not expensive but hard to come by.
    Thx for all

    nivea

      1. w Polsce mają wprowadzic podatek od smartfonów i tabletów. Zatem jeśli zrobicie sklep w Polsce to dowala wam podatek. Nie wiem czy to mądre.

          1. Let Me Google Translate That For You says “in Poland, they are to introduce a tax on smartphones and tablets. So if you make a store in Poland, you will get tax. I don’t know if it’s wise.”

  27. It seems there is no shipping method for France. Am I doing something wrong ? Should I wait to order the Pinephone ?

    > There are no shipping methods available. Please double check your address, or contact us if you need any help.

    1. If you have any accessories in your cart besides the PinePhone order these separately as they’ll likely ship directly from China.

    2. I was experiencing the same issue with my Pinebook Pro order recently and the customer support helped me with this:
      – they can’t send products with a lithium ion battery and ones without one in the same package. (Lukasz explained why in a blogpost at some point, but I forgot)
      → You need to only have the PinePhone in your cart and remove any accessories from the cart, then you will be able to view the shipping options
      → If you want to get the accessories, you need to order them separately from the PinePhone

  28. Pin64.org offers interesting products, but seems not to know about business practices:

    Their shop page for the phones indicates just below “Device Warranty: 30 Days” in green color _”In stock”_.
    However, further below it says “Estimate dispatch in late August, 2020” which proves that the phones are not yet in stock.

  29. Where is the mobian edition? this software appears more advanced than ubports or postmarketOS. GPS, Camera, Flash all working or at minimum demonstrable. Thank you for the recommendation. I highly recommend giving mobian, ubports interface looks good but some features are not functioning, same with postmarketOS.

  30. In Germany the VAT rate was reduced from 19% to 16% from July to December this year (due to COVID-19). It seems like the PINE64 store currently charges the old 19% ($38 for the 3GB PinePhone, instead of $32). If you cannot change that, can you share what is done with the $6? Maybe you can donate those additionally to the projects?

    1. I believe that this is rather a problem with the shipment company. Please correct me if I am wrong, but I think that pine64 only gets the price advertised (for example 199€ for the Pinebook Pro) and that the rest (about 40-50€) goes to DHL who works with customs, etc.

      1. That is true for the usual shipping, but for the new EU shipment the PINE64 store charges the VAT as far as I can tell (and you don’t need to pay anything anymore when receiving the shipment). The amount of VAT changes depending on the shipping address (and if you select US for example it disappears because the normal DHL shipment is used).

        So since the store currently does not charge the correct amount of VAT for Germany, I’m just wondering what will happen with the extra $6. I wouldn’t mind if those were donated additionally. 🙂

        1. Hallo Frank,

          die VAT wird aber nicht von Pine64 erhoben, sonderm vom deutschen Zoll!
          Bis 150 € = 16 % Umsatzsteuer; über 150 € inkl. Transportkosten zzgl. Importsteuer (5-20 % je nach Artikel).

          Die 6 € fehlen nur Frau Merkel 😉

          1. Hallo Sebastian,

            wie im Blogpost beschrieben wird das PinePhone für EU Kunden dieses Mal aus der EU versenden (aus einem Lager in Polen). Dadurch entfällt meines Wissens der Importzoll, PINE64 muss aber die Umsatzsteuer je nach Zielland im Shop berechnen. Wenn man versucht zu bestellen wird deshalb extra “VAT” berechnet, die bei Bestellungen aus China fehlt.

            Die Umsatzsteuer wurde aber im Pine64 Shop nicht angepasst, es sind dort immer noch 19% statt 16%. Pine64 bekommt hier also 6€ mehr. Grundsätzlich für mich kein Problem, ich wüsste aber schon gern was mit dem Geld passiert….

            Viele Grüße,
            Frank

          2. Also bei mir wurden die Hongkong VAT aufgeschlagen. Ich zahle $237,99 USD ohne Versand für die 3GB-Version. Ist da was schief gelaufen?

  31. YES!! I shelled out $1100 for my S10e with the hopes that the phone would allow me to run Linux on DEX and then they KILLED THE PROJECT!!!!! I was so outraged and almost asked for my money back, the only saving grace was the camera and the storage on the phone being pretty amazing. I would totally buy this phone to run a linux desktop OS, Linux is my daily driver and has been for the past two years, so far it’s pure freedom. The idea of a phone that can plug into a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and ethernet is basically my dream for home and office use. Who wants to carry a laptop around when all you need is a web browser, some basic apps like GIMP, Office and File management, and portability????

  32. I’m hoping that the pinecube can help me further refine 360-degree HD FPV. I have a setup that can downlink 360-degree video (or 180 degree video with a single camera and extreme fisheye lens) to the ground and display it in an android app, running in VR mode. This allows the pilot to look wherever they want while flying without using any sort of gimbal.

    The current implementation either uses a USB camera or HDMI encoder along with some sort of SBC onboard. I have looked into using IP cameras to combine both functions into one, but the firmware is pretty much inaccessible. I think the pinecube, along with the pinephone could make a much better solution.

    This is an example of some video taken from a 360 degree FPV test flight: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtQ5WjfNhpg&t=42s. This was actually flown using FPV from the 360-degree camera with a realtime video link to the ground.

  33. Hello,
    I am excited to see how much progress you all are making as I do love seeing this community flourish and progress. Even with the hiccups along the way I still see Pine64 as being the spearhead of bringing Linux to everyday users and being a company worth standing with. I do wish that there was an announcement of more powerful hardware before the launch day, from what I understood when asked about making a more powerful version of the PinePhone the Pine64 response was to make one much further down the line. It disappoints me because it is coming up on 4 months of purchasing the UBPorts CE and having yet to receive it. And now before its even in my hands there is a significant update to the hardware available for purchase today. This is frustrating to me. I do however look forward to the local repair shop newsletter as I lack the skills to perform such a delicate soldering procedure. Thank you for your news update.

  34. You wrote Europe, but then why PinePhone delivery to Ukraine is 65$? Even delivery to Greece who twice as futher is cost only 20$.

  35. Hi, very good news this “Community Edition: PostmarketOS with Convergence Package”.
    I just placed my order!
    I was wandering wether it will be possible (and how) to order a spare pinephone battery from Europe. ..

  36. I’d definitely like to buy 4 cubes. It’d be cool to have some processing locally to do some recognition. Like, take a picture if there’s a human and send it to me, etc.

  37. Please help Louis Rossmann: RANDOM LIVE @YouTube getting the phone to work/charge, 700 viewers watching him fail at them moment…

  38. Hint: You might want to watch that stream a few times to learn a lot about how end users have difficulties with the current situation of unboxing etc.

    Everbody who watches that stream right now – which is basically most of worldwide phone repair industry – feels “worst phone ever”…

  39. This is incredible and can’t wait for PinePhone, Pinecil and PineCube.

    For PineCube, I’m planning to replace my RPi door bell and motioneyeos security cameras because of mic/IR/PoE integration. I also would like to use it as a babymonitor. This is breath of fresh air from all the IP cameras with closed firmware.

    A few questions –
    – Does PineCube has support for a speaker output (I2S or something else?)
    – Can the board codecs can handle h265/VP9 encoding?
    – Does it expose any GPIO pins to add buttons or any sensors (light/temp/humidity etc?

    I hope the sensor can be upgraded in the future to a 8 or 12MP sensor as and when PinePhone/Book upgrades them too. This will be useful for a security camera when the subject is at a distance

  40. Thank you for amazing news! I hope convergence package will be permanent option. I’ve order one immediately. Bump of RAM and eMMC specs for Pinephone is very useful and brings Pinephone closer to Librem5. This makes choice so much easier. And it would be very nice to solve problem with shipping to Russia.

    Having PineCube would be great. I’d certainly buy me one. Great that you’ve integrated PoE. Does it have enough CPU/RAM for motion detection in real-time (using opencv, for example) to trigger video/photo capture?

  41. Definitely interested in the Pine Cube. It’s pretty scary to have a non-open 3rd party device capturing video inside your house, so would pick the open-source version any day.

  42. Let me order one (two?) of those cameras 🙂 I have been working with the NVIDIA Jetson Nano, and now Xavier NX, amongst others … but those two would be fun to run the image signal up against <3 In the case of the Xavier NX, I'm sure a quick 3D printed mount could hold two of these modules close enough together to render real-time high-res composites. Again, could be fun 🙂

  43. A question for the future PineTab update:

    I’m surprised I haven’t seen this mentioned in comments here or on the PineTab forums lists (maybe I just missed it), but since the PinePhone convergence configuration supports 3GB is there any plan to incorporate the same modification to future PineTab configurations? Same SOC, so it should be possible (?) but there is the inevitable increase in costs for a platform that is already crowding its target price.

  44. I find the PineCube concept to be quite interesting. I just have one question to determine whether it’s exactly what I’m looking for or just useful for basically everything else: how big is the unit? I’ve seen a specs list about the boards inside it, but I’m referring to the case itself. I’m looking at integrating functionality into quite a small space, so this detail is pretty important. Weight is not as important, but might be useful to list as well. If these aren’t known yet, I understand. Otherwise, it could be useful to add that to the specs list.

  45. The cube sounds awesome. I’m just finishing up a:
    “arch-based NDI multi-cam streaming setup” (say that when a barista asks what you’ve been up to 🙂 for a local venue and we spoke about having some other small feed cams scattered about to add a bit of flavour. They don’t have to be the same quality as our mains. Think “drum cam” etc. Fun!

  46. I would be interested in the PIneCube as a game/trail camera or maybe an open-source “Go-Pro” is such a thing is possible.

    1. Jim Brewster,
      I’m not sure about maybe adding a little dampening, but I suspect someone will work out waterproof enclosures for the pinecube fairly soon, probably via 3d printing.

  47. I definitely want a pine-cube camera. I have a couple raspi house cameras but the sdcard keeps wearing out and I’d like to switch to something more durable. That $25 price sounds awesome too. The pine-cube sounds like a better platform in every way and I’d love to get streaming video and motion detection working on it.

  48. Definitely exited for the CUBE! Looking forward to using it as a security camera for my packages. I’ll probably end up ordering a few, for fun.

  49. What’s the barrel size and voltage range for the Pinecel? Can I take a spare Dell or HP laptop power cord and feed in 19.2V or whatever and get decent lead-free soldering performance? (Sigh. Lead-free’s important, I use it, but the dumb 60-40 I learned to solder with as a kid sure works better.)

    Will there be a couple of tips small enough to support surface-mount, in addition to whatever basic tip I end up using for through-hole?

    1. The TS100 soldering iron is rated 12-24v, has tips available for SMD soldering, and sells for around $60. (there are many Youtube videos on the TS100) If the Pinecel matches that priced at $25, it should be sold out easily.

  50. I’m very interested in potentially getting a number of PineCube’s. Are these likely to work with Home Assistant?

  51. Hey! I’m looking forward to buy a PinePhone CE shipped in Russia and your announcement about shipping makes me so upset 🙁
    I however have some information that individuals are actually allowed to buy and get delivered with encryption-featured stuff for their private needs. I may handle necessary communications with customs and find out if any docs are needed, so please contact me in you’re interested in that (i bet you are :))

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