The MNT Pocket Reform is a compact laptop with a 7 inch display, a mechanical keyboard, a modular design that lets you swap out the processor and other components, and an open hardware design that makes the whole thing customizable.
Under development for the last year or so, the Pocket Reform is made by the same folks behind the original MNT Reform laptop, which has a larger display and keyboard, among other things. A Pocket Reform crowdfunding campaign is set to go begin at Crowd Supply on March 14, 2023. Update: The campaign is live from March 14 through April 27th, and MNT hopes to ship the Pocket Reform to in October to backers who pre-order for $899 and up
Prices are expected to start at around $900 during crowdfunding for a model with a 1920 x 1200 pixel display, an NXP i.MX8M Plus quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor, 8GB of DDR4 memory, and 128GB of eMMC storage.
While the $900 starting price is pretty steep if you’re only looking at price-per-performance, the MNT Reform line of computers are unlike almost anything on the market thanks to their emphasis on open hardware and free and open source software. The design itself is also pretty unusual, and it’s way more expensive to manufacture small batches of unique hardware than it is to mass produce something with a more traditional design, as components tend to get cheaper when you order them in larger quantities.
One of the most distinctive features include the keyboard, which is a 60-key ortholinear keyboard with the keys line up perfectly rather than staggered like most keyboards. The keyboard is also backlit with RGB lights, allowing you to change the color of the illumination. And below the keyboard there’s an optical trackball and four buttons rather than a trackpad.
Since the designs are open source, users who want to design their own case, keyboard, or other input devices may be able to do that. And since the processor is on a removable module, you may eventually be able to swap out the system-on-a-module for another option such as a Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 or Pine64 SoQuartz board.
The system also feature an M.2 slot for an optional PCIe NVME SSD, support for WiFi 5, Bluetooth 5.0, and ports and two USB 3.0 Type-C ports, a micro HDMI port, Ethernet port, and microSD card reader. There’s also a SIM card slot and optional support for a cellular modem.
You can find more details at the Crowd Supply preview page.