Recently we have seen a lot of successful companies be successful in adapting walled garden and vertical integration software and hardware practice. Most consumers (I don’t) loved it seen by their sales. Just for example Apple and Nintendo. They deliver their own software and hardware. Even some software is exclusive to their platform.
It’s clear that Framework is not like this. I would like to know how open is Framework? Are you open only for software only. For example, portable gaming like steam deck or other laptop manufacture where you can run whatever software you want but are limited to their own hardware standards. Another good example is Moto Mods and LG G5 where their hardware is upgradeable but only limited by their proprietary hardware that goes nowhere.
There’s another level of “open” which is an open standard for example DIY PC market. There are standards that all manufacturers can build upon. Since Framework laptop has a standard motherboard, will Framework “actively” work with manufacturers like Asus or Gigabyte to deliver different motherboards? Intel has tried it with NUC and we don’t see they are going anywhere.
Another question is did the consumer interested in open hardware standards? Quite a long time ago the concept of the Project ARA (Google) modular phone has been on the news everywhere but got shut down. Is it because of a lack of interest or do they just assume that users don’t want it? Another example I want to make is GPU and CPU shortage which shows that there’s a market for open hardware.
If Framework is targeting open hardware standards (For motherboard, Expansion slot, Casing, keyboard + trackpad, and screens) .
There’s a dilemma of standard summarized by this picture
https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/standards_2x.png. How do we prevent this? Another important question about the standard is who gets to decide what is standard. SATA used to be standard and now the desktop still keeps it because there are no space limitations. DIY PC market is surprising conservation with most mainboard has only USB-A! We could end up in a situation where NVME SSD is obsolete and USB C is not used anymore!
If framework didn’t decide that they are not going to make this an open hardware standard then there would be no problem but the consumer will be left with a single choice from 1 company. I would like to hear everybody’s opinion on this. Did you want an open hardware standard? or Open software standard is enough?
- A. I would like open hardware standard
- B. I would like open software standard is enough
- C. I only care if I can fix my own laptop or send to repair shop
- D. I don’t care at all as long as it is easy to use
- E. I don’t like open standard, worst experience for user I would rather be locked down and get the best experience.
- F. Others [Add comment below]