Crowdfunding Video Preview

A project log for ESP32 WiPhone

The WiPhone project is an open source mobile IP phone. WiPhone is intended to be hackable, modular, cheap, and open, while remaining usable.

stupidstupid 03/22/2019 at 07:366 Comments

Feedback appreciated... please let us know if you see something that could be improved, or clarified.

Hoping to launch next week.

Can also check out the Kickstarter preview page here (the campaign won't be live until next week):


paanvaannd wrote 03/23/2019 at 01:55 point

I have yet to read over all of the information on the Kickstarter demo page, but concerning the video:

* there is an abrupt transition leading into the "Hi, this is Ben..." segment (~1:06)

* another abrupt transition to the feature extensibility showcase at the end of the video (~1:43), especially with the audio: soft audio before to high-volume treble notes is jarring

I would recommend adjusting the video to add a little spacing between those transitions (maybe a 0.3 sec. fade-in transition) and adjust the volume level on that last bit with the music to make sure that viewers aren't so jarred by the volume change.

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stupid wrote 03/23/2019 at 14:50 point

Yeah, there are a couple audio transitions in there that need work.

The switch to loud music at the end was mostly intentional, though... maybe it's too much?

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zeflo wrote 03/22/2019 at 20:56 point

PS: The Video is perfect!

And if you are interested in some smaller critic points let me know.

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stupid wrote 03/23/2019 at 02:22 point

Well, judging by the quality of your last critique I'd say anything you have to add will be stuff we need to hear. :)

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zeflo wrote 03/22/2019 at 20:53 point

First of all, let me say: I absolutely love you project! I followed it from the start and it is one of the best projects i have ever seen on hackaday.

Having this said, here is my critic for the Kickstarter-campain:

1) Please remove the "Who is the WiPhone Perfect For?" Part. Nearly everything is wrong about it! It isn't cheap. It's not suitable for older people or kids. (If it was meant as a joke, i'm sorry i didn't got it) 

2) The LTE-Part: Why focus so much about the fact that it does not has GSM/GPRS/LTE? Just say: If you want to have cellular on board: make a daughter board. Or offer one yourself (maybe just GPRS) as an stretch goal.

Don't focus to much about the fact that it could be used as a phone. I mean, that's amazing, but it is so much more. I would focus on the software and hardware part, separated into four sections:

### Software Available:

List all included apps/functions: (Phone, Settings, Clock, Calculator, Mediaplayer, Messenger?, Radio?, Podcasts?, Weather?...) Maybe each with a short animated GIF to show the functionality.

### Software DIY:

I don't know how far your integration of MicroPython is already completed. But at this Point i would show of how easy it is to code your own app. I think a set of four to five (at least at the start) tutorials would be awesome: (1. Beginner: make an LED Blink, 2. Buttons, 3. Sound, 4. Display, 5. Create your own game (maybe snake))

### Hardware Available:

Here i would show all the available boards, in order how many people might want them, and how easy it would be to produce them (maybe as strech goals?): 

1.) Battery pack, Prototype Board, Qwiic+Grove, Flashlight, RGB Array 

2.) Bus Pirate, LoRa (Maybe also a 868Mhz Version?), NFC+RFID, Camera [1*], Weather Sensor 

3.) Barcode/QR Scanner, RC Car

### Hardware DIY:

Description about the pin out, physical dimensions and how easy it is to create your own project. Maybe with an example using the prototype daughter board.

One small change that could be interesting: Add an Groove-I2C-Connector or simple pin header next to the USB-Port (like the odroid-go has). That would lower the barrier to do a quick hack significantly.

Again: I really love your project and i hope i didn't wrote to much ;)

[1*] I added the "camera daughter board" to the list. The OV2640 camera module is super cheap and i think it would make a neat daughter board ;) Maybe additional pins have to be available on the daughter board connector? Just a suggestion.

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stupid wrote 03/23/2019 at 02:21 point

Thank you so much for taking the time to write this up. It's great feedback.

1) Yes, we probably need to remove that. That section of writing is pretty old, and came from a time when we were trying more to do 2 things at the same time (be a phone for hackers, be a phone for everyday people). Turns out that doesn't work that well and it's hard to build a marketing message around it anyway.

2) For a long time we were resisting adding a cell modem because of the work involved. We wanted to limit the scope of the engineering, and WiFi enables a lot of use cases that hackers want, while a cell modem doesn't play nicely with low volume production, privacy, cost, etc. But apparently everyone wants LTE, so we scratched our heads about it for a while and figured out how to make a daughterboard that checks that box, but (hopefully) doesn't require us to spend forever getting the design working. I'll delete that whole section and replace it with something like: "we'll offer an LTE daughterboard, but the implementation only gets done after the core features of the phone."

The rest of what you wrote makes total sense and we'll try to incorporate as much of it as we can while still launching in a reasonable amount of time.

Thanks! This is going to significantly improve the crowdfunding page.

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