Pine64 has produced some of the most interesting hardware aimed at open source enthusiasts over the past few years. They’re not exactly high-performance machines, but what they are is cheap – among other things, Pine64 sells Linux smartphones for as little as $150 and Linux laptops for as little as $100.
Those low prices, combined with an active development community makes hardware like the Pinebook and PinePhone line of devices compelling for developers and other folks looking for an inexpensive way to experiment with free and open source software on purpose-built hardware.
But these are devices aimed at enthusiasts. Support is primarily offered via a wiki, forum, and various chat channels. Orders tend to come in batches, which means you may have to wait weeks or even months for your device to arrive, depending on when you place an order. And software is very much a work in progress.
So Pine64 has announced plans to launch a series of online retail stores in regions including Europe and North America. Customers who buy from one of these stores will pay a higher price, but their devices will ship in a matter of days, they’ll get better support for software troubleshooting, and more help with returns, replacement parts, or tracking missing shipments, among other things.
Pine64Pine64 says it will continue to offer Community pricing through its existing Pine Store. But when the new online retail experience rolls out next year, customers will have the option of paying more to get the kind of support they’ve come to expect from other computer vendors.
Here’s a roundup of recent tech news from around the web.
- Pine Store Community Pricing & Online Retail Stores [Pine64]
Pinebook & PinePhone maker Pine64 will launch regional online retail stores in 2021. Prices will be higher, but come with premium support for customers uncomfortable buying enthusiast-grade hardware. Community pricing (and support) will still be an option. For example, the PinePhone KDE Community Edition is up for pre-order now for $150 and up, but the “retail” price will be $100 higher.
- iPhone zero-click Wi-Fi exploit is one of the most breathtaking hacks ever [Ars Technica]
Apple patched a vulnerability earlier this year that could have allowed an attacker to remotely access an iPhone over WiFi without any user interaction at all. Discovered by a Project Zero researcher, the bug is now patched… if your iPhone is up to date.
- Samsung Is Working on a New Galaxy Chromebook [Evan Blass/Voice]
According to @evleaks Samsung is working on a Galaxy Chromebook2. That’s about all we know so far, but the first-gen model packs a 4K OLED touchscreen display, 360-degree hinge, Core i5 Comet Lake processor, 8GB RAM, and 256GB storage.
- Amazon Fire TV Cube can now do Two-Way Video Calling via USB Webcam [AFTV News]
Now you can connect a webcam to a 2nd-gen Amazon Fire TV Cube for 2-way video calls from your TV. You can call other Cube users, or anyone with an Echo Show device.