Openmoko Neo FreeRunner

Hardware specifications

The Neo Freerunner is built around an ARM processor, provided by Samsung. It embeds 256 MB of flash memory (static storage) and 64 MB of RAM, which is completed by an extra 64 MB RAM chip for a total of 128 MB. A MicroSD card can also be inserted for increased storage capacity, of which today’s standard is between 1 and 8 GB. The Freerunner is complete with GSM/GPRS, Bluetooth, Wireless (802.11bg) and GPS connectivity. Graphics are provided with a high-density 640×480 LCD touchscreen, driven by a 3D graphics accelerator. The external USB port allows any USB-compliant device to be used with the Freerunner with the appropriate driver. Finally, two gyroscopes sense the physical orientation.

ProcessorSamsung S3C2442B B54 with an ARM920T core at 400 MHz
Main memoryTotal of 128 MB
64 MB inside the 2442 MCP
64 MB Samsung K4M51323PC
Storage256 MB NAND flash inside the 2442 MCP
16 MB ST M58WR016KB706E NOR flash for emergency bootloader
One MicroSD connector (cards up to 4 GB already tested)
TouchscreenToppoly 2.8" (43 × 58 mm) 480 × 640 TD028TTEC1 screen
Toshiba JBT6K74 TFT LCD driver
GraphicsTouchscreen Smedia Glamo 3362 3D accelerator
AudioWolfson Microelectronics WM8753 codec
National Semiconductor LM4853 mono amplifier
2.5 mm Motorola-compatible stereo jack
Power managementNXP PCF50633 04 N3
GSMTI Calypso D751992AZHH 850/1800/1900 MHz (US) or 900/1800/1900 MHz (Europe) with GPRS support
One external antenna connector
BluetoothDelta DFBM-CS320 Class2 module, using CSR !BlueCore4
WirelessAccton SiP-M WM3236AQ 802.11bg 54 Mbps (Atheros AR6001GZ)
One external MMCX antenna connector
AccelerometerTwo ST LIS302DL
USBOne external mini-A connector
BatterySANYO UF653450S 1200mAh Lithium-Ion 3.7V
6 days autonomy in standby, 6 hours talk
ChargerAKII A10P1-05MP 100-240V 0.3A in, 5V 2.0A out
Physical specifications120.7 × 62 × 18.5 mm (height × width × depth)
110 grams without the battery, 184 grams complete
Environmental constraints-10◦ C to +60◦ C (operating)
-15◦ C to +70◦ C (storage)

Known issues

Conflict between the GPS and MicroSD card

The GPS receiving unit has a problem in the current version of the Freerunner. It can be almost impossible to establish a cold start without manual intervention. The problem is believed to be well understood though. It would be the consequence of two distinct issues:

  • the MicroSD controller is interfering
  • soldering of the internal GPS antenna connector is sometimes flaky

There is a software workaround for the first issue, and a very technical hardware fix is also available. This problem is supposedly fixed in the current production batch.

Poor audio quality over GSM

The quality of the audio transmission may not be optimal:

  • the audio mixer software settings may sometimes downgrade the quality of the audio transmission; this is a software-only issue.
  • there may be echo noise during conversations; a hardware fix was found without user intervention.

Low-battery charging issue

It may be difficult to charge the battery if it is deeply discharged. This problem is believed to be fixed in the current model, however more tests and user feedback are still necessary to confirm it.

Poor autonomy compared to the specifications

The autonomy with Openmoko’s own Operating System is currently way below what can be expected with the components chosen. This is mainly a software issue, as some power-saving features are not implemented yet.

Some SIM cards don't work

Some users have reported that their SIM cards are not recognized. This problem is still under investigation.

Planned improvements

Unlike regular, market-driven development of smartphone products, the Openmoko smartphone hardware is already designed to evolve while preserving as many functional aspects as possible. Openmoko has already disclosed its roadmap for future improvements of the phone. A summary is provided here; it cannot be taken as granted, as Openmoko’s hardware plans may change in the future.


This revision will be based on the same SOC as GTA02 (the current version). It will presumably have a 3.5 millimeter audio connector (instead of 2.5), support EDGE and include a camera. Even though EDGE improves data rates over GPRS, it is not up to 3G support.


This revision will be based on a different SOC. It should however provide 3G support, to allow for faster connectivity using the regular cell phone network.

Additional information

Last modified 12 years ago Last modified on Sep 13, 2008, 8:04:34 PM