Manjaro Lomiri Alpha1 for PinePhone Is Released

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Two thirds of all web traffic comes from smartphones. Traditional desktop, laptops or notebook computers are dying. The free software community wants a piece of the pie. Manjaro Linux has ported the Lomiri desktop, formally known as "Ubuntu Touch", to Manjaro for Arm and released a complete Manjaro Lomiri distribution for the Arm-based PinePhone. It's hard to read the release notes without breaking into wild laughter.

written by 林慧 (Wai Lin) 2020-09-19 - last edited 2020-09-19. © CC BY

Yuri and Yoona from SNSD.

The Manjaro Linux developers have clearly done a lot of hard work porting the Lomiri desktop environment to Manjaro Linux for Arm. And it is quite nice that they have made installable images for the PinePhone available. One should probably not laugh wildly at these hard efforts. But it's so incredibly hard not to and there's way:

"Currently broken:

  • Calls are highly unstable
  • Messaging might not work properly
  • No vibartion functions yet
  • No camera function yet"

So. It's shiny new software for a phone. Which.. can't be used to make phone-calls or send messages if you install said software. And you can't use it as a camera.

The Lomiri desktop the Manjaro Arm smartphone OS features is the "Ubuntu Mobile" environment that's been around since 2010. It was re-named Lomiri in February 2020 after "Ubuntu Mobile" had been left for dead after Ubuntu abandoned in favour of using GNOME on Ubuntu's mobile editions in 2017.

You can get the new Manjaro ARM for PinePhone from if you have a PinePhone and you want to install it for some reason. You can also buy a severely "Limited Edition" PinePhone with Manjaro Arm pre-installed for just $150 at They won't send it until "November 2020", so there is a small hope that you will either be able to use it to make calls or use it to send messages by the time it arrives early next year if you order one today.

It is great that they've made a ARM version of Manjaro Linux for the PinePhone, and a few developers may be interested in it. Too bad that the actually tangible end-user consumer product is nothing but a huge joke of a smartphone that can't even be used make phone calls.

(2 votes)



15 months ago
Score 1++

Well excuse me for not being a unity scientist.

But you're right, of course, I should probably look closer at Lomiri and write a page with a small history section some day. But you know a review from the perspective of "Would my old mother be happy with this product" wouldn't turn out looking all that great.

I love the idea of the PinePhone. It's just that every time I see a toot about it it's always something like "I've installed this new OS on it and it's great, except audio doesn't work."


14 months ago
Score 0++

Anybody remember this? https://www....buntu-edge#/ I "bought" one. If only this was the timeline where they got made. I'm not a big Ubuntu fan, I sure like them more than Google & Apple.

WaiLin might be a little more critical than you want, but I think the point is that even an alpha should nail making phone calls and text messaging before it's even sold, IMO.

Because people might be okay with alpha testing and working on a phone that might be a little glitchy overall, but if it flat out doesn't even do phone stuff...
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