Session
Schedule FOSDEM 2022
FOSS on Mobile Devices

Status of camera support on mobile FOSS devices

An open discussion about the state of cameras on Linux-powered mobile devices
D.mobile
Jacopo Mondi
<p>Camera support has traditionally been a pain point when it comes to Linux phones.</p> <p>Years and years of competition on the photography capabilities of consumer devices have pushed vendors to adopt more and more custom, closed source implementations, leaving users of free software powered mobile devices with nothing but poor solutions limited to work on the single devices they have been developed for.</p> <p>With the increasing maturation of libcamera, a complete user space camera stack for Linux devices is now finally available, and Linux phones developers can now cooperate on more mature camera solutions for their devices.</p> <p>The BoF will serve for phone developers and camera developers as a cooperation space, to better understand their mutual needs and move forward camera support for the whole Linux ecosystem.</p>
Cameras have traditionally been a distinguishing factor in the traditional mobile/smartphone market. Year after year the number of pixels available in a phone's camera have become a stable part of the phone producers marketing material and as a direct consequence of such fierce competition everything around cameras has usually been quite secretive, with vendors implementing rather cumbersome software architectures to work around the software licensing requirements which would have otherwise required them to open at least part of what they consider their secret sauces. Vendor's reluctance to discuss and innovate in a common shared space and the undeniable deficiencies (or better, the complete lack of existence) of anything resembling a camera stack in the Linux ecosystem has pushed camera support to a quite uncomfortable position when it comes to FOSS-powered mobile devices. Until very recently nothing comparable to what could be achieved by a rather cheap Android phone, running binary blobs both in user and kernel space, can be easily realized by using a fully open infrastructure. Three years after starting of the libcamera project, its adoption as the default camera stack for the Raspberry Pi ecosystem and its increasing permeation in the x86 device space thanks to the support of vendors like ChromeOS and a more robust integration in Pipewire, it's now time to finally address the camera issue in the FOSS phone space. With the recent interest from Librem5 and Pinephone communities in the project, this BoF intends to provide a space where phone developers, libcamera developers and hopefully vendors can discuss their mutual headaches and try to sketch a way forward in order to provide to free-software equipped mobile device a camera support that can do more than what an Android phone was capable of 10+ years ago.

Additional information

Type devroom

More sessions

2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Alistair Francis
D.mobile
<p>The reMarkable 2 is an eInk tablet, based on the i.MX7 SoC. The tablet ships with a fork of the 4.14 kernel and a custom rootFS built with OpenEmbedded. The vendor kernel is based on the NXP vendor kernel with a large collection of rM2 specific patches on top.</p> <p>This talk discusses the process of adding support for the rM2 to the mainline Linux kernel. The talk first discusses the process of understanding the original boot process and then getting access to a download mechanism and ...
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Jozef Mlich
D.mobile
<p>Nemomobile is operating system for mobile devices based on Manjaro Linux and Glacier UI. It mainly developed on PinePhone, but it could be runned also on android devices. The talk will summarize its current status and its direction in future.</p>
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Martin Kepplinger
D.mobile
<p>I work with Purism SPC on the Librem 5 phone kernel. I regularly post what our team pushes upstream into the mainline kernel at https://puri.sm/posts/author/martin/</p> <p>In this little talk I want to summarize what we've done, describe how we do it and put it into perspective a bit.</p> <p>I'll outline rough future plans and of course encourage to participate in case you own that phone.</p>
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Bernhard Rosenkränzer
D.mobile
<p>OpenMandriva and its predecessors have been in the desktop and server world since the 1990s - now OpenMandriva 4.3 can run on the PinePhone. What did we have to do to get there and what problems have to be solved before it can fully replace that Android phone in my pocket?</p>
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Arnaud Ferraris
D.mobile
<p>The Mobian project was initiated a few days prior to FOSDEM'20, back when the first PinePhones (BraveHeart edition) were arriving in the hands of developers and enthusiasts. From a single-person weekend project aimed at running Debian on one specific device, to one of the major mobile Linux distributions, let's board into a journey through the past, present and future of Mobian!</p>
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Luca Weiss
D.mobile
<p>A general overview of porting Linux to mobile phones, with a focus on Qualcomm. From the device tree to how you get started and why you should do it.</p>
2/5/22
FOSS on Mobile Devices
Andreas Kemnade
D.mobile
<p>Most Kobo/Tolino readers offer a well marked console port and often a second UART. If they are not water resistant, they offer an internal µSD card slot containing the whole operating system and bootloader so that sounds like an invitation to do something interesting with them besides just reading books. Especially in prolonged outdoor activities, the display and their low power consumption have their merits. Hardware is quite similar, so you also have chances to get a replacement next ...