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OWOP - Open WebOS Phones by the community
View Poll Results: Do you want to help developing great WebOS products
Yes, I want to help as a software developer 9 29.03%
Yes, I want to help as a designer 10 32.26%
Yes, I want to help in the administrative part (building contacts, support users) 15 48.39%
No, what a ridiculous idea! 6 19.35%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04/01/2012, 06:44 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I had the idea, and, looking at the number of topics about it, more people had, that the only way to get some hardware on webOS in shops, is to produce it ourselves. But, even the most optimistic guy, can't say that the community would be able to: design the hardware, develop the software, design the phone itself, set up a supply chain, produce the phone, and get it into the shops. We would have to set up a joint venture with a Chinese smart phone producer. He has the ability and resources to design the hardware, set up the supply chain, and produce the phone. We as the webOS community have the creative people to come up with a earthshaking design. There are people around here with the ability to make webOS suitable for the hardware. We also have the webOS fans to provide support to buyers and to contact the carriers and shops to sell our phones.
Therefore I made a business plan for a organization (project title OWOP (OpenWebOsPhones)) that could do this.
I hope all of you think of this as a good plan. Tips are always welcome. At the poll you can make clear that you want to help, and how you want to help. Once there are enough volunteers we can carry out the plan, as described in the business plan.
Off course all the profit from the organization will be for the further development of webOS

EDIT: added a newer version off the business plan, with some additions, and some improvements, from the topic.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf OWOP UK rev.pdf (264.4 KB, 30 views) Email Attachment

Last edited by janthiemen; 04/03/2012 at 12:18 PM. Reason: Some additions and spelling
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Old 04/01/2012, 07:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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First, let me say that if you are serious you've picked the most inauspicious day possible to announce this - if you're going to work closely with Chinese companies you will have to pay more attention to "environmental factors" like those!

On the chance that you are being serious though I did read through your business plan, and while there are elements I disagree with, there are also parts that I do agree with, and if you get a team together the ideas and strategies can certainly be improved and refined.

With that said however, I have to be honest and say there is a serious issue with the budget
- it's way off, even for this totally outsourced approach you are proposing. How much off I can't say right now - I'll have to spend some time doing my own calculations - but just looking casually at the line items I'm realizing they are way too low. If this isn't an April Fools gag, take the time to revisit those carefully.
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Old 04/01/2012, 08:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I have to admit, I haven't even thought about today being 1 April. Now I know it, I have to admit, it indeed isn't the best day to post it. But yes, I'm serious. I thought it was a very low investment. I have been thinking for a long time, but I wasn't able to come up with more costs. I think I forgot many costs. Please help me thinking about more costs.
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Old 04/01/2012, 09:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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perfect timing

i read the title as "QWOP" at first xD
anyway, a joint venture is an idea, but what's to stop them from just doing it themselves?
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Old 04/01/2012, 10:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Stopping them from doing it themselves is not that hard. They don't have that many creative people, they don't have the experience with WebOS, we as community have, and, they don't have the knowledge of the western business culture, we do have. It also would be lots more expensive for them to do it themselves, because we rely on volunteers, something they can't.
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Old 04/02/2012, 12:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm in. Sounds like a fun project and if you need help with marketing later on, I know a few creative folks with whom we can make great ads / videos.

I and Adobe inDesign are ready. Even if we do fail the whole project, not trying in the first place is far worse in my opinion.

EDIT: Maybe we can get in touch with the Openmoko team and discuss OWOP with them? Surely it's better to find some allies who have done the heavy lifting before! (http://wiki.openmoko.org/wiki/Main_Page)
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Old 04/02/2012, 01:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by toanedre View Post
This would be kind of like Habitat for Humanity except that people volunteer to build smartphones for homeless mobile platforms.
Exactly. I'm also very positive that distributors in Africa and Asia are willing to pick up fresh ideas like these. If we can optimize webOS to run adequately on open hardware, we can reach a lot of people at more accessible price points. Texas Instruments' OMAP3 platform should perhaps be looked into, the ARM Cortex A8 processor is still great and a good starting point should OWOP expand its concepts later.
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Old 04/02/2012, 08:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Hi guys, it seem you are talking about the GTA04 without actually naming it!

(in case you didn't know about it, as the software when it works and you like it, there is no need to re-invent the hardware if there is one board that actually work well and nice for our purposes)

They are planning to produce about a hundred of boards in a few weeks, so hurry up! Contact them if you are interested

The prices look really bad, but with theses little production batches, they arenot able to discuss the price with their distributors, also, this is more or less the price of all the components anyone could buy separatly without any volume rebate, but thing can evolve fast and make more and more persons interested and happy "customers".

There are cad models for the "genuine" case that are buidable by shapeways: also, a lot of mods are coming from the community (like bigger screens, or batteries, solar panels, pixel qi displays, etc...

see : 3D Printed GTA04 Case | SlyBlog

Note that at this price, using this commercial method ((the simplest, with a very few money and funding), goldelico is only releasing a sort of proof of concept phone, not a commercial one, but one can imagine that with a little more people interested , they could grow very fast and obviously offer better deals (having more distributors interested, biggest impact on the market, advertisment, etc...).
The processor could be upgraded too, in futures versions, you can also think about adding more ram, maybe the board design also could have an upgrade, but this one should require more work...

Goldelico only ship the board with a little optional SD with a minimal debian system, but:

A few months ago, a dozen of prototypes were sent to a few motivated devs, and 3 days after, these devs could:
-upgrade the kernel from 2.6.3x to 3.2.
- release qtmoko an opensource distro based on debian and qt-embedded (ex-qtopia),
- release a beta version of SHR.
- redesign some drivers in a very creative way, test the hardware a lot, and optimize power managment.

quoting Mickey Lauer post on that topic:
"If you want longterm support for a platform, your best bet is to build a community around it. But you will also want to work on hardware support otherwise you’ll run into the next dead end. "
and about webos possibly becoming opensource:
"If we could use the WebOS application stack on top of the FSO middleware, we may have a real chance to get something great and usable – and complete – soon."
(Michael Lauer - Freelancer / IT has seen a crazy year)

Videos showing the openphoenux GTA04 in action :goldelico - YouTube
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Old 04/03/2012, 12:44 AM   #9 (permalink)
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i only took a cursory look at this. But you may find this useful in writing for some tips regarding your business plan. Essential Elements of a Good Business Plan | SBA.gov

Like i said i only glanced at it. But two contradictory statements in your business plan stood out to me that you may want to think about.

In section "3.1 The market" you state that Samsung, Nokia, Apple, HTC etc are the market but "none of those will be a competitor in particular"

But later on under "3.4 Competition" you state "OWOP will suffer competition from all large smart phone produces, most importantly: Samsung, Nokia, Apple, HTC, LG, Motorola, Huawei, ZTE and RIM." You may want to iron out those inconsistent statements.

As a side note if you want to ever ask for funding you may want to consider rewording the part about focusing on the customer not profit. Anyone considering investing or even giving a business loan is going to be concerned first and foremost with a return on their investment which means profits are likely their primary interest.

Oh lastly, If you want to attract interest in a webos based business i'm not sure you want to lead with "Webos is one of the biggest failures in recent years."

Like i said i only took a quick look at it but those things stood out to me. Anyways from the UK in the file name I'm guessing maybe you are from England and the link is from a U.S. website but regardless maybe that link can provide you with some tips. Good luck to you.
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Old 04/03/2012, 08:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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@yousifabdullah contacting OpenMoko indeed sound like a great idea.With them in, we would have a partner with some years of experience, in this type of projects.

@sabrod using the GTA04 board could be a good idea. But then you don't have a partner with a good capital position, a well set up supply chain and a own team of hardware designers, like you would have when starting a joint venture with a Chinese partner. This is what, I think, makes them a better solution for producing our own phone, that is meant to be a commercial phone. Also the GTA04 has almost the same hardware as the original Pre, witch as we all know has a bit outdated hardware. Therefore, I think, starting with a Chinese partner would give us a better position.

@SnotBoogie at first, thanks for the link. With "none of those will be a competitor in particular" I meant not especially one of those companies, like only Samsung, but all of the companies are competitors. I would have to excuse myself for my English, I'm not raised with the English language, so there might be some mistakes, or wrong syntaxes in my text.
And, indeed, if we would use this bussines plan for raising money at commercial organizations, we have to make a few adjustments.
And, I will have to agree with you about the "WebOS is one of the biggest failures in recent years." sentence. It isn't the best way to start a business plan in witch you want to make people enthusiast about WebOS.
And, no, I'm not from the UK, I'm from the Netherlands. The UK in the document title was only for my own reference.
But again, thank you for the link. I'll read it carefully, and use it to improve the business
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Old 04/03/2012, 09:00 AM   #11 (permalink)
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As I can see on the poll, there are a lot of people interested in helping, so I just started a Google group for the project. It's totally empty now, but it can be found here.
Now the first thing we've got to do is becoming a real organization. This should be a non profit organization, as it isn't our first goal to make profit. I'm now searching for the best corporation type, keeping every possibility, in every country, open as a option. It should at least be possible for every volunteer to have a say. It might also not be possible for someone to get away with the money. Suggestion are always welcome.

Once we are legal, we can go searching for a Chinese partner and start raising funds.
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Old 04/03/2012, 04:16 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by janthiemen View Post
@SnotBoogie at first, thanks for the link. With "none of those will be a competitor in particular" I meant not especially one of those companies, like only Samsung, but all of the companies are competitors. I would have to excuse myself for my English, I'm not raised with the English language, so there might be some mistakes, or wrong syntaxes in my text.
And, indeed, if we would use this bussines plan for raising money at commercial organizations, we have to make a few adjustments.
And, I will have to agree with you about the "WebOS is one of the biggest failures in recent years." sentence. It isn't the best way to start a business plan in witch you want to make people enthusiast about WebOS.
And, no, I'm not from the UK, I'm from the Netherlands. The UK in the document title was only for my own reference.
But again, thank you for the link. I'll read it carefully, and use it to improve the business
Writing in a non-native language is always difficult so I understand. I used to speak and understand spanish but after 15 years of not speaking it i can barely remember some of the words.
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Old 04/04/2012, 04:46 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I like the idea of getting new hardware .... but

as a first step ; would it not be a worth looking at getting webos working on something like


Geeksphone | Join us now leading the mobile revolution


Its low spec but it is cheap....


Why the GeeksPhone Zero will be the best Android phone
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