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@Dominic

I want a highly durable but also inexpensive phone. It's gotta be android, because I want to run whatever @andrestaltz comes up with.

I most recently had a samsung j2, which is bottom of the bin "smart phone". It was completely fine, until the USB plug gave out. Apparently, microusb is designed to have 10k plug/unplug cycles that should be about around a decade or so!

Working theory: it's not the socket, it's the connection between the socket and the phone - on a cheap phone it's just a surface mount, and this probably breaks, especially given that stiff part of the cable coming out of the phone is quite long compared to the actual plug so you have a large moment working to break the socket off the circuitboard.

Ideas:

  • There is wireless charging, and this can be added to a phone easily enough
  • I need to use adb sometimes (hmm, but not as often as charging) this can be done over wifi, but you still need to turn it on by plugging in a usb cable (!?!)
  • qi charging moves power, but not data unfortunately.
  • If you have root, you can enable wifi debugging without plugging in a cable. Seems I need root to have a truly cable free phone.
  • According to research by tencent a staggering 80% of chinese android users have rooted phones. I also heard this number reported as 27% of all android users. My guess is this wouldn't be possible unless there were vendors who could do this as a service.
  • I saw an "apple" store in Phnom Penh (capital of Cambodia) that would jailbreak your device and also install pirated software for you.
  • there are also people selling prerooted phones on ebay.
  • device manufacturers are moving towards USB-C, but given my experience with microusb I really don't trust sockets optimized for smallness.
@Dominic

I now possess a rooted nexus 5! ($259 NZD)
Nexus range was recommended (by google) as easiest to root, and also comes with qi wireless charging.

I followed these instructions to unlock bootloader, then these instructions to install twrp then used the install supersu option it twrp to get root. Then I installed fdroid with adb, and then adbWireless with fdroid.

Just need to purchase the charging pad, and then I should never need to plug the phone in again.

I was pleasantly surprised how easy it was!

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@Dominic

Yes I mean 5. I read that it's removed in 5x.
It looks exactly the same as in this disassembly video,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPuCmfhzgbg
which shows the charging coil at about 6 minutes in.

@Clayton Koenig

I will be most interested to hear how the Nexus 5 wireless charging goes. Mine is not much more than a year old, and already that mini-USB socket seems to be damaged. Still charges, but who knows for how long. I like the device. Just wish the battery would last a little longer. I usually don't even get a full day of (IMO) light usage out of it.

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@ezdiy

Personal anecdote: Lenovo, Huawei bottombins - dualsim. often removable battery, factory unlocked bootloaders, reasonable specs (especially >2-4GB RAM).

My guess is this wouldn't be possible unless there were vendors who could do this as a service.

Your guess is kinda correct. Chinese have a knack for commodified piracy - meaning street and online shops sell phones with root and some preinstalled market by default. It's the same thing as pc bloatware (shops get paid a comission to install that crap). And there are multiple such competing pirate markets. And if you don't get it preinstalled, those are reasonably easy to use - root exploit, f-droid clone and some bits of snoopy malware all bundled up in a single APK which supports wide variety of phones for a given season of popular market.

As for builtin Qi, my plan is to suffer through the current generation of lowend junk without it, the next wave of cheapo phones will be probably all-wireless.

@andrestaltz
Liked this in #cybernomad
@andrestaltz

I want a highly durable but also inexpensive phone. It's gotta be android, because I want to run whatever @andrestaltz comes up with.

Actually there isn't a hard reason why the SSB mobile app wouldn't work on iOS. React Native support for iOS is actually better than Android support. But I'm guessing there will be a ton of corners to polish which are specific to iOS, so as a proof-of-concept I'll be focusing on Android.

@angelo

I started thinking about attempting an iOS SSB app. I hadn't ever tried to run JS in an iOS app (I've built regular, native iOS apps in the past) and I'm not sure what would be involved with trying to get SSB ported from a pure Node environment.

I half-considered, as a totally unrealistic project, trying to port SSB over to Swift for the hell of it. :scream:

@Dominic

@andrestaltz still, easier to focus on one thing at a time. I've never owned an iphone either. Given that I do sometimes dabble with mobile dev but don't have a mac I couldn't use a iphone. (right?)

Wanting to prehaps get a wireless charger today I went ashore and went around several shops to see if they had one. The people I spoke to barely knew what a wireless charger was. They only had "samsung compatible" ones... I am fairly sure these are the Qi standard, but anyway, they where over prices at ~$100 (for what is essentially just a coil of wire)

Saw plenty online for < $20

@Travis
Liked this in #cybernomad
@Travis

@Dominic I dropped in a generic cell sales and service shop in the SF Mission and asked if they could root my LG G3 (at the time) and they said they could for, I think, $60. I didn't follow up because I didn't want to risk bricking it, but yeah, rooting may not be an advertised service but it seems like you can get it done.

@andrestaltz

Given that I do sometimes dabble with mobile dev but don't have a mac I couldn't use a iphone. (right?)

Oh right, I forgot that detail... walled gardens.

@ezdiy

Saw plenty online for < $20

Yea, those work fine. Pretty much everything is Qi. I'm no fan of external qi. They are bulky, and slow, compared to internal qi (internal has less voltage converters on the way). Also, the USB can still be roughened up to a point it gives out after a while, it's not just unplug cycles.

@neftaly

@Dominic I have a couple of Nokia qi pads if you want

@oren

Hi Andre, is there a reason not to build the mobile version as a progressive web app as oppose to react-native? I am just curios if there is a technical limitation for not choosing a PWA.

@ezdiy

@oren PWA does not allow low level access (such as network sockets, or fast crypto). So in this case, plain webview would be better (It works the exact same as PWA in the end anyway).

That said, webview is still generally choice for bottom of the barrel cookiecutter stuff (cheap dev, easy to port, but shitty UX).

@Dominic

@neftaly that would be awesome! how do are they powered? they seem to usually just take microusb in right?

@neftaly

They take 5v over a nokia-style barrel plug (but easy to splice into USB).

@Knack

You can get mag-safe micro-USB cables that you never* have to unplug.

  • I mean, eventually you'll probably want to, but you can just snap away the magnetic connector most of the time.
@Dominic
Re: %sMSScwtWG

this is awesome! see also this thread: sbot-on-android

I am also recently the owner of a nexus 5 durable phone thread so I'll be trying this shortly!

@nkint
Liked this in #cybernomad
@oren

Interesting. Thanks!

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