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Freedom Phone

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The Freedom Phone is a scam-like phone that claims to be “anti-big tech censorship”. It was created for a conservative American audience in response to Donald Trump being banned from Twitter and other social media platforms.[1] Unsurprisingly, most of what it claims to be are outright lies.

Background[edit]

On January 8, 2021, Donald Trump was banned from Twitter as a response to the 2021 U.S. Capitol riot. Most mainstream social media platforms had been banning content promoting COVID-19 and the 2020 U.S. presidential election, and most app stores had banned alt-right apps such as Gab. This spawned a huge persecution complex among conservatives of “liberal” big tech censorship. The Freedom Phone was created by Bitcoin nut Erik Finman, who claims to have been a teenage bitcoin millionaire.[2]

What it claims to be[edit]

Freedom Phone’s “PatriApp” app store claims to be completely uncensored and to contain apps “censored” by Apple and Google’s app stores such as Parler and Gab.[3] It is claimed to be a completely original design.[4] Its ClearOS operating system is claimed to be developed by the phone’s creators specifically for “freedom, security, and privacy”. It claims to be pre-installed with “banned” and “unbanned” apps such as Newsmax, Parler, Rumble,Wikipedia DuckDuckGo,[note 1] and OANN.[5] Its claim about its tracking blocker, ClearGM, is likely true; ClearGM is an actual privacy software, and Freedom Phone doesn’t falsely claim to have made it.[6]

What it actually is[edit]

Ironically, the phone is actually manufactured by Umidigi, a Chinese company.[7] The phone is actually a slightly modified Umidigi A9 Pro.[7] The A9 pro sells for under $200,[8] compared to the Freedom Phone’s $500. [9] Both those phones use chips designed by MediaTek, a Taiwanese company whose products are known for containing security issues[10] and GPLWikipedia violations.[11] The PatriApp app store is an illegal fork[note 2] of the Aurora Store,[12][7] which in turn is a Google Play client. This, of course, means the phone does not actually support “censored” apps, and the “banned” apps said to be included are only website links. The ClearOS operating system was created by a company in New Zealand in 2001 and does not claim to be developed for “freedom, security, and privacy”.[13] The Freedom Phone doesn't even run ClearOS; instead, runs a fork of Android.[14] Essentially, the Freedom Phone is a total clusterfuck that doesn’t even meet its stupid standards.

See Also[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. Likely included due to it claiming not to track its users
  2. The GPL license of the Aurora Store requires the source code of forks to be published under the same license if it's released to the public, good luck finding PatriApp's source code.

References[edit]