The physical design is excellent. The screen quality is awesome.
I started by flashing pre-built images to get something working. I flashed a new kernel and rootfs. The basic functionality is there, but things tend to crash a lot.
Building the software locally took quite some time, maybe close to a day on my laptop. The build tree is 11GB large. That is huge. Updating the software to the latest version and re-building it is pretty fast though; around a few minutes.
With todays’ build, I was finally able to make a voice call. The openmoko-dialer seems quite solid. What is missing is the audio settings. I’m now using
alsactl -f /etc/alsa/gsmhandset.state restore to put the audio in the right state. There was a lot of echo and noise during the call.
Playing MP3 works fine. I was worried about performance problems, but the GUI is still responsive, even while copying a ~50MB file onto the 512MB mini-SD card. I discovered that the external audio connector isn’t a standard audio contact, it is smaller. I need to go out and buy a converter to be able to plug the neo into my stereo. It would have been nice if this cable had been included.
I briefly tried bluetooth, and at least the low-level stuff seems to be present and working. There is no GUI to power up the bluetooth chip though.