PinePhone with keyboard

SAS

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Jan 10, 2019
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Interesting news from the Pine64 blog regarding the future development of PinePhone:

We’re well aware that an accessory that many of you want for your PinePhone is a keyboard. We have a good understanding how important a keyboard can be to a Linux phone, effectively turning it from a smartphone into a Linux PDA. We are therefore not cutting any corners and, instead of reinventing the wheel, we’ll be making a keyboard heavily inspired by PSION Series 5 keyboards from the 1990’s. We hope to not only replicated the usability of the PSION Series 5 keyboard but also the tactile feel it is known for. The keyboard will use the I2C connection on the back of the phone, which will allow it to open and close identically to the Series 5 PDAs. Due to the compatibility with the existing original Pinebook and the development for the PineTab, as well as the ability of the PinePhone to dual boot from SD, I expect that you’ll eventually be able to run a fully fledged Linux OS with the keyboard attached. Many probably want to know the availability of the keyboard, which is understandable, but for now we’re talking to companies so we can get the molding process going. So, for now, I can only vaguely say that it will be available sometime in 2020.
With their pricing model - and if it really resembles Psion keyboard :p - it can make current smartphones with hw keyboard much more affordable and desirable :)
 
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Swordfish II

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May 20, 2015
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Hmm I already purchased a Cosmo Communicator, but if this comes (keyboard) out i will probably get it and a pinephone as well.

Keynav with custom bindings works pretty well for a keyboard only mouse replacement. I have it working on an x86 tablet that I converted to ubuntu in a keyboard folio
 

Xcl4m4t10n

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After the keyboard they could do some kind of video game controls. And after that, combine keyboard with gamecontrols OPS WHAT DOES WE HAVE HERE, A FUCKING PYRA? No, better. Because the PinePhone is real.

 

modport

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I expect that you’ll eventually be able to run a fully fledged Linux OS with the keyboard attached.
Wow, this is very interesting! I've been looking for a handheld/thumb use UMPC with a desktop OS and built-in LTE (US Verizon). It seems that the PinePhone supports all of Verizon's LTE bands.

Hmm I already purchased a Cosmo Communicator, but if this comes (keyboard) out i will probably get it and a pinephone as well.

Keynav with custom bindings works pretty well for a keyboard only mouse replacement. I have it working on an x86 tablet that I converted to ubuntu in a keyboard folio
I didn't know keynav existed. I've always brushed off running a desktop OS without a built-in mouse pointer. With this, I guess I'll be adding keyboard only devices to my list of prospective UMPCs like the PinePhone and f(x)tec Pro1 (assuming a desktop OS gets ported to it). Maybe I'll look at the Cosmo Communicator too but it's not really a thumb typing device. It seems they have gotten Debian to boot but I'm not sure how usable it is yet.

Looking like 2020 will be interesting for UMPC with mobile broadband fans like myself.
 

Swordfish II

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May 20, 2015
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Yeah keynav isn't quite as fast as a mouse, but it is accurate and emulates a mouse well. Most browsers also support scrolling with the arrow keys.
 
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