History of the Librem5ΒΆ

Developing a dev kit and eventually a phone is a long process that requires many hardware iterations over time to test and determine which pieces are good to use in the final product and which aren’t. What defines a good hardware component for the Librem 5 phone? There are several metrics such as performance, freedom of the firmware (if any), physical size, voltage required, features supported and more that are taken into account when selecting hardware components for the Librem 5 phone.

On the freedom front, we have been committed to the i.MX line of CPUs as opposed to something less freedom respecting such as Intel hardware. Since the i.MX8 CPU had not been released when the Librem 5 team started testing (January 2018), we started our investigation with the Nitrogen6 MAX i.MX6 board.

Once the i.MX8 CPU was released, and the EmCraft i.MX 8M SoM was available, a few were ordered so the rest of the dev board could be designed around this EmCraft SoM. The Librem 5 Development Kit page is where you will find information on the hardware and how to set up your development kit to start using it.