PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition is now available for pre-order

 At a time when maintaining individual, privacy seems difficult on the Internet, products appear from time to time that try to provide an alternative to well-known products that provide useful services to people in exchange for collecting and exploiting their personal information.

Since smartphones are now an essential part of our lives, and we cannot do without them, the guarantees provided by their manufacturers and the operating systems they work on about respecting the privacy of users and not monitoring what they do on their phones have always been questioned, and research has proven Indeed, Apple, Google, and phone manufacturers collect information about users on a regular basis, although some companies collect less information compared to others.

Unlike other products for which it is easy to find safe alternatives, there is really no alternative for Android phones and iPhones, and the users have only to choose between these two options.

In recent years, attempts have emerged to run the Linux system on some Android phones as a solution to the privacy problem Some companies that have launched Linux smartphones have also appeared, with additional features that are not found in Android and iPhone devices, to help protect their user’s privacy.

Pine64 logo

One such company is Pine Store Limited, known by its trade name Pine64, a Hong Kong-based organization that designs, manufactures, and sells single-board computers, notebook computers, and smartphones.

In the past few days, the company announced the availability of its new smartphone, the PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition, for pre-order for all users, after it was available during the past months exclusively to developers.

PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition is an upgraded version of the original PinePhone launched back in 2019, and it comes with a more capable processor, more ram, and better cameras.

This new smartphone comes with a 6-inch IPS LCD with 1440 x 720 resolution and 18:9 ratio protected by Gorilla Glass 4, a hexacore Rockchip RK3399S SoC (2 x ARM Cortex-A72 + 4 x ARM Cortex-A53 at 1.5 GHz), and ARM Mali-T760 (4-cores at 500 MHz).

PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition is equipped with a 4 GB LPDDR4 of RAM, 128 GB eMMC expandable up to 2 TB by a microSD memory card. It has a 13 MP single rear main camera with a Sony iMX258 sensor and LED flash and an 8 MP selfie camera with an OmniVision OV8858 sensor.

The phone contains a removable battery with a capacity of 3000 mAh, the same as the one in the Samsung J7 phone that supports fast-charging up to 15W, one speaker, a 3.5 mm headphone port, a USB Type-C port for charging and transfer port, and it comes with Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 5, and 4G networks.

The most important feature of this phone besides all these specifications is the presence of Kill Switches for LTE (including GPS), Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Microphone, Camera, and Headphone Jack pins that allow these functions to be disabled at the hardware level.

This phone works with the pre-Beta build of Manjaro Linux ARM with Plasma Mobile user interface, but you will be able to run any mobile Linux system on it like Mobian (Debian for Mobile), Postmark OS, Ubuntu Touch...etc., or maybe even an Android version in the future.

Linux's phones may still be at the beginning of their way to the world and their operating systems are still in their initial stages of development and still lack some essential applications and games for mobile users, but they are already developing and improving rapidly and may one day become a viable alternative to Android and iOS.

PinePhone Pro Explorer Edition is available for pre-order at $399, and orders placed before January 18th will be dispatched in the week of January 24th, and for orders placed after January 18th, the estimated dispatch is late February 2022.

The phone box does not contain a charger, and you will either have to order one from the official website of the company or buy a charger from any store near you, in case you do not have a charger at the moment.

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