Early last month, e.foundation announced the beta release of their OS called /e/ from the creator of Mandrake- Linux. The OS is completely focused on user privacy. The team recently announced that they have finished porting /e/-MVP beta2 to Android-Oreo, which means that the OS can now support many new, more recent, devices. The /e/-MVP beta2 is now supported on 49 different devices including:
- Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 pro
- Xiaomi Mi A1
- Xiaomi Mi 6
- Xiaomi Pocophone F1
- OnePlus 5T
- Google Pixel XL
“At /e/, we want to build an alternative mobile operating system that everybody can enjoy using, one that is a lot more respectful of user’s data privacy while offering them real freedom of choice. We want to be known as the ethical mobile operating system, built in the public interest.”
–/e/ project leader, Gaël Duval
This OS is free and open-source. Its ROM uses microG instead of Google’s core apps. /e/ has new default applications including a mail app, an SMS app (Signal), a chat application (Telegram), and much more. The Mozilla NLP makes geolocation available even when GPS signal is not available.
The team has also been obtaining requests to release a smartphone with /e/. They have finally taken the suggestion into consideration and started talks with several hardware makers for the same. They have started a poll asking users which OS they would prefer on the next Fairphone.
The Fairphone is a smartphone which is designed with ecological and ethical issues in mind. It is made from recycled, recyclable and responsibly-sourced along with minimal packaging. In a Fairphone, if any component breaks down or the user wants to update it, only that element need to be replaced.
Apart from this short announcement on the blog, there is not much documentation for users to refer to and clarify their doubts about this project. Here is what users had to say regarding the announcement:
If you are interested in “leaving” Apple and Google and “reconquer” their privacy, read Duval’s Twitter thread that answers common user queries on /e/
Head over to e.foundation’s official blog to know more about this announcement.