[ANN]: GTA04 (Beagleboard inspired Openmoko Upgrade) - Early Adpoter Program
Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller
hns at computer.org
Tue Dec 21 10:41:37 EST 2010
we are happy that we can make an announcement to the Free and
Open Hardware Community, right in time for X-mas and New Year:
We have finally tested, understood and patched the bugs of the
first GTA04 sample board (a.k.a. GTA04A2) and have successfully
started U-Boot. We can access the important peripherals like
display, touch screen, and MMC card.
So we are very confident that the already scheduled redesign
(GTA04A3) will work right from the beginning and boot Linux.
This looks like the start of the aera of new Openmoko devices.
-- what it is --
For those who have not followed or are new to this project, the
GTA04 is a OMAP3 based Smartphone Platform/Module 
that fits as a motherboard replacement into a Openmoko
Neo1973 or Freerunner case . It is more or less the idea to
squeeze a BeagleBoard into a handheld and was started
by connecting a Openmoko Display to a BeagleBoard .
It will finally come with UMTS (HSPA), GPS, WLAN, Bluetooth,
Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Altimeter, Compass, FM and an
optional camera. An expansion B2B-connector allows to
base a custom design on this module.
A demo video of the GTA04A2 controlling the display and
blinking the illuminated buttons is here . A brief
project description is . Please excuse the low quality of
the pictures, since our small team has so far focussed on
hardware and software.
The difference to off-the-shelf smartphones is that it will be
well documented (CC-BY-SA) and schematics will be included
in the spirit of the original Openmoko devices so that you can
access all the nice peripherals we have designed into it.
And through the expansion connectors you can also use
it as a module in your design.
And, it is a community project. Everyone is welcome to
The driving force behind this project is Golden Delicious
Computers (www.goldelico.com), a specialist for embedded
hard-, firm- and software development located in Oberhaching
near Munich, Bavaria, Germany.
-- next steps --
A closed and safe process would be that we silently redesign
the board (i.e. develop a GTA04A3), order some sample
boards and test them. If everything finally works, we would
order components and sit there and wait for them to arrive.
Then, we would announce generaly availability in big ads in
NYT and FAZ.
In this mode, you may deduce, that you will not be able to get
a GTA04 earlier than Summer next year if we don't run out of
-- early adopter program --
Therefore, we have thought hat we offer an early adoper
program to the benefit of everybody.
The idea is that you can order a GTA04A3 immediately. At
a fixed price (280 EUR). And we take the risk that prices of
components will change. You only take the risk that we may
need more time to get the components and have to spin
Using your money, we will order the core components with
a long lead time (OMAP, Memory, UMTS module) as soon
as possible - and early enough before the GTA04A3 design
This makes sure that we have enough components for the
first batch to be produced. And we will not spend the money
for anything else so that you could even visit us to see your
chips... But please don't touch.
Once, the GTA04A3 boards arrive, we will test some of them
and if everything looks ok, we will produce your early
adopter devices. Only in the case that the A3 board has another
serious flaw, we will have to design a GTA04A4 board first.
This all speeds up the process dramatically so that we currently
estimate delivery of the first units by March 2011.
The price has been set very low so that it just covers component
and production cost at a reduced feature set (there are not all
peripherals installed but UMTS and GPS will be). It might be
possible to retrofit some of them.
Please note that it does *not* include the LCD module, case and
battery, because it is a motherboard-replacement to existing
Openmoko units (Freerunner and Neo1973).
And, we can't specify yet which version of the OMAP3
we will get (600/720/1000 MHz) and how big the RAM/NAND
flash will be. But expect something similar to the BeagleBoard.
Please note that we also have chosen to switch from a GTM501
UMTS module to a GTM601 which has even better performance
-- how to participate --
Here is the link to the EAP offer with more detailed conditions
(there are some restrictions):
You can also support us by purchasing a Openmoko Beagle
Hybrid development tool to extend your existing Beagle Boad
or by donations.
The git repositories and binary downloads of our U-Boot and
Kernel can be reached through .
And, come to FOSDEM 2011 to see and touch a GTA04
and discuss with us about this new gadget.
We wish you all merry christmas and a happy new year.
-- links --
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