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Customizable Framework Laptop Lets You Pick Ports, Reduces E-Waste


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Customizable Framework Laptop Lets You Pick Ports, Reduces E-Waste

The DIY Laptop dream?

 

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(Image credit: Framework)

 

Most people by a laptop, never upgrade it, and toss it when it's time for a new model. Framework, a San Francisco-based startup, hopes to upend that paradigm with its Framework Laptop, a 13.5-inch notebook that appears to be an easily upgradeable, customizable portable unlike any other. It could also greatly reduce e-waste.

To start, the laptop will run off of 11th Gen Intel Core processors, and will support up to 64DB of DDR4 RAM and up to 4tB of PCIe Gen 4 NVMe SSD storage. It will offer a 13.5-inch, 3:2 display with a 2256 x 1504 resolution. It won't be saddled with a 720p webcam — instead, it will offer 1080p at 60 fps. 

 

CPU 11th Gen Intel Core Processors
RAM Up to 64GB DDR4
Storage Up to 4TB PCIe Gen 4 NVMe SSD
Display 13.5-inch, 3:2, 2256 x 1504
Webcam 1080p, 60 fps
Connectivity Wi-Fi 6

 

But for tinkerers and environmentalists alike, it's the repair system that sounds awesome. The ports are housed in a series of expansion cards, so you can choose the inputs and outputs you want on the laptop, as well as on which side they go. There are four port bays, from which you can choose from USB Type-C, USB Type-A, DisplayPort, HDMI, a microSD card slot, a headphone amp, or an "ultra-fast storage" bay. 

 

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The Wi-Fi, two memory slots and the SSD are all replaceable, rather than soldered. But the entire motherboard will also be replaceable so that you can put in newer processors later on. This, of course, is the tough part for a startup. Framework will ultimately have to succeed to put out new versions for the full potential to come through. Alienware had promised replaceable GPUs for the Alienware Area-51m gaming laptop, and those ultimately never truly came to fruition, and that was an established company.

Framework also states that "high-use" components, including the battery, display, keyboard and a bezel with customizable color options will be easy to replace and that you will be able to buy parts directly from the company. It is pledging to release updates "regularly" to the components, and that it is going to have an open system so that partners can sell their own modules through Framework's market. Additionally, the laptop is made from 50% recycled aluminum and roughly 30% recycled plastic.

 

There will be pre-configured models with either Windows 10 Home or Pro, as well as a DIY Edition, which lets you customize and assemble the modules yourself and choose either Windows or a distribution of Linux. The company says it will include a screwdriver either way for when you eventually want to open the laptop up to upgrade or repair.

Framework hasn't yet announced the full specs, prices or configurations. It says those will come in "the next weeks," along with a shipping date that’s more than the curent Summer 2021.

The company was founded by Nirav Patel, who worked at Oculus near the start back in 2012, and also has talent that has worked at Google, Lenovo, Apple and others. We'll be curious to see how it fares and if Framework ultimately manages to deliver, both at launch and years down the road. It's a lofty goal, but one that could be game-changing if it succeeds. 

 

 

Source: Customizable Framework Laptop Lets You Pick Ports, Reduces E-Waste

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Customizable Framework Laptop Lets You Pick Ports, Reduces E-Waste The DIY Laptop dream?   (Image credit: Framework)   Most people by a laptop, never upgrade it, an

There was a mobile phone concept that had similar idea or replaceable parts and I don't think that got off the ground which I think is where this is going given the relatively small number of tinkerer

Exactly!! The idea is wonderful, but the product is complex and the market is too small to make the concept take off.

There was a mobile phone concept that had similar idea or replaceable parts and I don't think that got off the ground which I think is where this is going given the relatively small number of tinkerers who might purchase the device and the design complexity of trying to separate and connect internal parts.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Ara

 

Quote

Project Ara was a modular smartphone project under development by Google. The project was originally headed by the Advanced Technology and Projects team within Motorola Mobility while it was a Google subsidiary. Google retained the ATAP group when selling Motorola to Lenovo, and it was placed under the stewardship of the Android development staff; Ara was later split off as an independent operation.[1][4] Google stated that Project Ara was being designed to be utilized by "6 billion people": 1 billion current smartphone users, and 5 billion feature phone users.[5][6]

Under its original design, Project Ara was intended to consist of hardware modules providing common smartphone parts, such as processors, displays, batteries, and cameras, as well as modules providing more specialized components, and "frames" that these modules were to be attached to. This design would allow a device to be upgraded over time with new capabilities and upgraded without requiring the purchase of an entire new device, providing a longer lifecycle for the device and potentially reducing electronic waste.[7][8] However, by 2016, the concept had been revised, resulting in a base phone with non-upgradable core components, and modules providing supplemental features.

Google planned to launch a new developer version of Ara in the fourth quarter of 2016, with a target bill of materials cost of $50 for a basic phone, leading into a planned consumer launch in 2017. However, on September 2, 2016, Reuters reported that two non-disclosed sources leaked that Alphabet's manufacture of frames had been cancelled, and may be licensed to third parties; and that a spokesman declined to comment on the rumors.[9][10]

 

Edited by Arachnoid
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36 minutes ago, Arachnoid said:

There was a mobile phone concept that had similar idea or replaceable parts and I don't think that got off the ground which I think is where this is going given the relatively small number of tinkerers who might purchase the device and the design complexity of trying to separate and connect internal parts.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Ara

 

 

Exactly!! The idea is wonderful, but the product is complex and the market is too small to make the concept take off.

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