"He's Not Dead Yet"
By Ian Darwin
OpenMoko was an early open-source (hardware and software) cell phone project. It was designed to be flashed without having to root it or unlock a bootloader; the download tools were open source. It was great, except, it had an A5 CPU, no camera, no 3G and no prospect of it, and no real distribution strategy or scalable business model. So the company (openmoko.com
) somewhat imploded.
However, since the hardware was open, another company has picked up the pieces. Golden Delicious Computer (nice name) makes a drop-in replacement motherboard with an A8 CPU, 3G (UMTS) and optional camera, that re-uses the case, LCD and some other components to upgrade your existing OM (or you can buy a complete new phone).
The only downside is the price, which is, ahem, competitive with commercial phone products of the same capacity. But at least it proves that openness can keep projects alive after the originators have moved on... See link to ordering page and current pricing