Mike Stone

Mostly The Lonely Howls Of Mike Baying His Ideological Purity At The Moon

Twenty Minutes With A Pinephone

02 Nov 2020

My new Pinephone arrived today. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a lot of time to play with it. Maybe twenty minutes, if I’m being generous. Even though my time with it has been short, I thought I’d give you my initial impressions of the device.

The first thing that struck me about the phone was it’s heft. I’ve got a Pinephone, PineTab, Pinebook Pro, and a PineTime, and all but the Pinephone has seemed really light in my hand. Almost fragile it was so light. The Pinephone has a bit of heft to it. Not in a bad way, but in a way that feels like this thing isn’t going to break if I breathe on it the wrong way.

The phone came without a charge, which isn’t unexpected since it came from China and flew to the United States over the course of a week or more. What did come as a surprise about it was when I plugged the phone in, it started up immediately, I walked through the very basic setup steps, and was presented with a working Phosh “desktop”. The battery reported 100% full, so I thought I’d grab it and play with it in the other room while I was putting my kids to bed. That proved to be a mistake as it immediately turned off when I unplugged it. Even though it’s reporting that it’s 100% capacity, it’s not.

Tapping around the interface, things move pretty quickly. It doesn’t quite have the polish of my full time phone (Pixel 5), but it feels better than I thought it would after playing with my PineTab. The PineTab has quite a bit of lag, and can be downright slow about doing some things. The Pinephone feels pretty snappy in comparison.

The last thing I’m going to mention, and this is on me not Pine64 in any way, it caught me off guard that it’s running Manjaro. It shouldn’t have since it’s on the box and on the phone itself, but it did. I’ve been using Mobian with Phosh on the PineTab, and Manjaro with Phosh looks pretty much identical, but obviously tools like apt aren’t there. Tomorrow when I have the chance to look around a little bit more, I’m going to have to get myself in the Manjaro head space instead of a Debian based distro. I’m looking forward to it.

All in all, the device itself feels great. I’m super excited to play with it, and it looks really good. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have a little bit more than twenty minutes to poke around.

Day 94 of the #100DaysToOffload Series.

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