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  1. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    I'm trying to minimize my exposure to Google & Apple. I'm not on Facebook, Instagram, etc., and am reworking my 'digital devices' life, and am thinking of going back to BB10.

    It has been 4 years since I've touched a BB10 device. Can I run the following apps on a Passport these days?

    * Email. Tutanota app for personal email & Outlook (or whatever can sync with my Microsoft O365 Exchange business email account)
    * Firefox
    * A serviceable navigation app
    * Audio player
    * Zoho CRM app
    * Nextcloud app (for cloud based calendar, contacts, and photos). I would run Nextcloud on a DigitalOcean VPS.
    * Evernote
    * Spotify
    * Pandora

    Some Nice To-Haves

    * OneDrive
    * PayByPhone (parking)
    * Uber &/or Lyft

    So, what do you think; am I asking too much?

    Alternativcey, and for similar money as a Passport, I can buy a Sony Xperia XA2 running Sailfish OS (paid version). However, I have zero experience with this platform.
    Does anyone have experience with this OS?
    B B Mens in Japan likes this.
    08-21-19 07:10 PM
  2. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    Update: I forgot to mention that I have (had) 2 mobile devices: Nexus 6P and iPnone XR. I just gifted the iPhone to my wife. I closed my Google account & I tried to load LineageOS on the 6P but was unsuccessful, hence the possible move to a BB10 or Xperia/Sailfish device.
    08-21-19 07:14 PM
  3. conite's Avatar
    I'm trying to minimize my exposure to Google & Apple. I'm not on Facebook, Instagram, etc., and am reworking my 'digital devices' life, and am thinking of going back to BB10.

    It has been 4 years since I've touched a BB10 device. Can I run the following apps on a Passport these days?

    * Email. Tutanota app for personal email & Outlook (or whatever can sync with my Microsoft O365 Exchange business email account)
    * Firefox
    * A serviceable navigation app
    * Audio player
    * Zoho CRM app
    * Nextcloud app (for cloud based calendar, contacts, and photos). I would run Nextcloud on a DigitalOcean VPS.
    * Evernote
    * Spotify
    * Pandora

    Some Nice To-Haves

    * OneDrive
    * PayByPhone (parking)
    * Uber &/or Lyft

    So, what do you think; am I asking too much?

    Alternativcey, and for similar money as a Passport, I can buy a Sony Xperia XA2 running Sailfish OS (paid version). However, I have zero experience with this platform.
    Does anyone have experience with this OS?
    You're asking too much. You can get SOME stuff working with 3rd party alternatives, or old Android app versions though.

    Sailfish isn't really fleshed out yet either.

    If you want to remain outside of the dual-ecosystem reality, then you will have to revert to a very basic, dumbphone+ life.
    ppeters914 likes this.
    08-21-19 07:14 PM
  4. TrumpetTiger's Avatar
    Update: I forgot to mention that I have (had) 2 mobile devices: Nexus 6P and iPnone XR. I just gifted the iPhone to my wife. I closed my Google account & I tried to load LineageOS on the 6P but was unsuccessful, hence the possible move to a BB10 or Xperia/Sailfish device.
    Hey Ron,

    Sailfish is certainly an option, and in full disclosure their Android runtime is more advanced that BB10's, but it really depends on what you're interested in. Sailfish is solid but the interface is less smooth and it doesn't have the Hub. It's better than Apple or Android but not quite as good as BB10 in my experience.

    To address your specific app requirements (some of which I'm still testing, but I wanted to get back to you):

    E-Mail: you can use built in O365 synchronization for this with the native Blackberry 10 Hub. I do it every day.

    Firefox: I'm still testing versions of Firefox specifically, but there are definitely good browsers you can use (BEOL Browser is one).

    Navigation: Blackberry Maps will work for this.

    Audio Player: Neutron, Star Player, or the built in Music app are all viable options.

    Zoho CRM: This will install but looks like it requires Google Chrome for some reason to sign in. I'm going to keep checking on this to see if there's an older version that will work.

    Nextcloud: Looks good but still testing.

    Evernote: This runs natively on a built-in Blackberry 10 app, so no problems.

    Spotify: Runs with no issues.

    Pandora: Still checking.


    OneDrive: Can be done via mapping your BB10 device as a network drive.

    PayByPhone: Yes.

    Uber/Lyft: Yes, but possibly via browser.

    Let me know if you have additional questions Ron...I'll update as my testing completes.
    08-23-19 06:27 PM
  5. BronzeBeard's Avatar
    If you're a bit computer savy, and have a supported device, you could run something like PostmarketOS.

    I am not sure if it runs all your "apps" as I am not an "app" person. So I am not going to go through your list. It does run many FOSS programs however.

    Posted via CB10
    08-23-19 06:41 PM
  6. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    Even if all of those apps can be made to run today - some by using the browser and some by finding older versions of the app - it should be kept in mind that anything that needs a server connection could stop working at any time, as the server can stop supporting older versions of the app. This is exactly what happened to every banking app, for example - no North American or European banking apps still support (or allow) Android 4.3 apps, with most requiring Android 5 (minimum) as of today, and that number will only go up in the future.

    So if these apps are mission-critical for you, you're taking a very high risk that at any random time, something will stop working.

    Another example is that BB Maps relies on data that BB has licensed, and BB isn't going to be renewing that license when it expires. And as the last several announcements of EOL services shows, you can't even expect any advanced notice that this will be happening. Just a couple weeks ago, several services stopped working and BB didn't make an announcement until it was already gone.

    Of course, if you dual-carry phones, then this might not be a big deal for you, but if you only plan to carry one phone, then you need to be prepared for things to suddenly stop working anytime, because that's exactly what WILL happen, at least to apps/services that require connecting to an Internet server somewhere.
    ppeters914 and John Albert like this.
    08-23-19 07:35 PM
  7. EFats's Avatar
    You have some pretty specific needs, so I suspect you will be out of luck.
    Sailfish, I don't see as a viable option. Still not many native apps, with all the app solutions really provided by Android, so how is that escaping Google?

    I have found you are far better off just running Android, turning off as many Google services you can, resorting to FDroid or Yalp to get apps and getting yourself a nice blocker to limit the tracking.

    So far BB10 is still the best solution for me. I've explored all the other options, I've got iPhone and some Xperia's lined up just in case (Sailfish ready!). Believe it or not, 2nd favourite goes to Windows 10 and I enjoy those phones more than my iPhone even. Android lags far behind..

    Posted via CB10
    vtypal likes this.
    08-25-19 10:39 PM
  8. sailor123's Avatar
    Created an account here just to reply...

    I have used a Nokia N900 (2010), a Jolla 1 (2014), a Xperia X (2017), and a Xperia XA2 (2019) as my primary phones, and a Nokia N9 (2012) , a BlackBerry Passport (2016) and the Xperia X (2019) as my secondary phones. Other than a brief 1 month period where I used the stock Android installation on the Xperia X, I have always been running an alternative OS.

    Firstly, from my experience, BB10 is way behind Jolla, with various annoyances:
    - Long startup / shutdown time
    - Confusing swipe implementation:
    - One finger from the top or two finger from the top? Depends on the current screen!
    - Swipe down to go from Hub to Main, swipe left to go from Main to Hub?
    - Slow to toggle airplane mode
    - While switching mobile network manually, the current mobile connection is killed while searching
    - Occasional crashes
    - Barebone support for Android app

    And, of course, BB10 was already killed by John Chen a few years back.

    In comparison, with the Xperia X, everything just works. Startup / shutdown is almost instant, the UI / UX is well thought-out, the connectivity is good, there was almost no crash, and we can get the similar Play Store experience as Android (by pinning to a 2017 Play Store version, blame Google). Even BBM for Android runs fine.

    The only major drawback is that the Android emulation layer is stuck at version 4.4, and some apps have started to target version 5.0 or above, such as Fastmail.

    The other annoyance is that TLS 1.2 was only enabled by default for the Android emulation layer since about a month ago. Without that, we had to rely on individual apps to enable it; some do, e.g. Firefox, but most do not. This is a problem inherited from Android, see https://github.com/wireapp/wire-android/issues/870

    With the Xperia XA2, we now have Android 8.0 running inside a LXC container, so apps compatibility is not a problem anymore. However, there seems to be a major issue with slow GPS locking, impacting both native Jolla apps and Android apps. So, it can't really be used for GPS navigation at the moment.

    Also, downloading from Play Store doesn't work yet (again, blame Google), but Yalp works just fine, along with SAI to install split APK files.

    Now to the obvious question asked above, how is that escaping Google?

    Well, sadly, to be a functional member of the society (outside of maybe China), we need apps that are only written for Android and iOS, while also require persistent GCM/FCM/APNS connection to function properly.

    I guess we shouldn't get too bogged down by having to run a mixture of native Jolla apps and Android apps. Instead, we should treat it as having a great Android emulator running on a modern (GNU/)Linux phone. Indeed, the Jolla phones have Wayland and Systemd, while my desktop machines have X and OpenRC.

    For the geeks, this blog post goes into details on updating GCC, GLIBC, and the Gecko browser engine: https://blog.jolla.com/hossa/

    Also, as root access is a given, and enabling SSH server is just one-click away, we can debug misbehaving apps (native or Android) with the usual SSH + top/tail/grep/awk/strace/etc, without any cable between the workstation and the phone.

    I hope this reply can nudge your closer to giving Jolla a try
    08-28-19 06:18 PM
  9. TrumpetTiger's Avatar
    Created an account here just to reply...

    I have used a Nokia N900 (2010), a Jolla 1 (2014), a Xperia X (2017), and a Xperia XA2 (2019) as my primary phones, and a Nokia N9 (2012) , a BlackBerry Passport (2016) and the Xperia X (2019) as my secondary phones. Other than a brief 1 month period where I used the stock Android installation on the Xperia X, I have always been running an alternative OS.

    Firstly, from my experience, BB10 is way behind Jolla, with various annoyances:
    - Long startup / shutdown time
    - Confusing swipe implementation:
    - One finger from the top or two finger from the top? Depends on the current screen!
    - Swipe down to go from Hub to Main, swipe left to go from Main to Hub?
    - Slow to toggle airplane mode
    - While switching mobile network manually, the current mobile connection is killed while searching
    - Occasional crashes
    - Barebone support for Android app

    And, of course, BB10 was already killed by John Chen a few years back.

    In comparison, with the Xperia X, everything just works. Startup / shutdown is almost instant, the UI / UX is well thought-out, the connectivity is good, there was almost no crash, and we can get the similar Play Store experience as Android (by pinning to a 2017 Play Store version, blame Google). Even BBM for Android runs fine.

    The only major drawback is that the Android emulation layer is stuck at version 4.4, and some apps have started to target version 5.0 or above, such as Fastmail.

    The other annoyance is that TLS 1.2 was only enabled by default for the Android emulation layer since about a month ago. Without that, we had to rely on individual apps to enable it; some do, e.g. Firefox, but most do not. This is a problem inherited from Android, see https://github.com/wireapp/wire-android/issues/870

    With the Xperia XA2, we now have Android 8.0 running inside a LXC container, so apps compatibility is not a problem anymore. However, there seems to be a major issue with slow GPS locking, impacting both native Jolla apps and Android apps. So, it can't really be used for GPS navigation at the moment.

    Also, downloading from Play Store doesn't work yet (again, blame Google), but Yalp works just fine, along with SAI to install split APK files.

    Now to the obvious question asked above, how is that escaping Google?

    Well, sadly, to be a functional member of the society (outside of maybe China), we need apps that are only written for Android and iOS, while also require persistent GCM/FCM/APNS connection to function properly.

    I guess we shouldn't get too bogged down by having to run a mixture of native Jolla apps and Android apps. Instead, we should treat it as having a great Android emulator running on a modern (GNU/)Linux phone. Indeed, the Jolla phones have Wayland and Systemd, while my desktop machines have X and OpenRC.

    For the geeks, this blog post goes into details on updating GCC, GLIBC, and the Gecko browser engine: https://blog.jolla.com/hossa/

    Also, as root access is a given, and enabling SSH server is just one-click away, we can debug misbehaving apps (native or Android) with the usual SSH + top/tail/grep/awk/strace/etc, without any cable between the workstation and the phone.

    I hope this reply can nudge your closer to giving Jolla a try
    Hey sailor,

    First, let me say that I'm not necessarily opposed to the use of Sailfish, and I am a fan of people making their own choices based on what works for them. However, I thought I'd take a moment to reply to your post and compare your comments about Sailfish with BB10.

    - Long startup / shutdown time
    I suppose that depends on how you define long for the startup, but BB10 devices tend to boot up within a minute. Shutdown is even faster.

    - Confusing swipe implementation:
    - One finger from the top or two finger from the top? Depends on the current screen!
    With respect, this is simply false. You can swipe down with one finger from the top and get exactly the same response as you would with two fingers (if for some reason you wanted to use two) with the exception of a very few rare configuration circumstances.

    - Swipe down to go from Hub to Main, swipe left to go from Main to Hub?
    This also is false. You swipe left to go from Main to Hub, then right to go from Hub to Main. Swiping down on the Hub just brings you to the Settings screen...exactly the same as it does if you swipe down from Main.

    Slow to toggle airplane mode
    Toggling airplane mode is instantaneous on all BB10 devices.

    While switching mobile network manually, the current mobile connection is killed while searching
    I'm not sure what you mean by "switching mobile network manually," but all network switching is instantaneous and (assuming you have another data connection, such as wireless) that connection is maintained while doing any mobile network maintenance.

    Occasional crashes
    While BB10 certain can crash, it's no more than most other mobile OSes if one is using native apps or compatible Android apps.

    Barebone support for Android app
    I suppose this depends on what you mean by "barebone." I'd argue that 4.3 runtime support is basically just as good as 4.4 runtime support, to which Jolla is apparently limited.

    And, of course, BB10 was already killed by John Chen a few years back.
    Chen is definitely not my favorite person, but Blackberry Limited has just announced extended support for Blackberry 10...so not dead yet.

    If one is concerned with Android app compatibility, it seems like there are a number of limitations with Jolla as well as BB10:

    --Workarounds needed for Google Play on the Xperia X.
    --Android versions limited to 4.4 or less on the Xperia X.
    --No navigation possible on the Xperia XA2 (BB10, incidentally, still works fine for this with Blackberry Maps)
    --No possibility of Google Play on the Xperia XA2.

    Also, out of curiosity, what would your response be to concerns about Russian ownership of Jolla and the implications for privacy? That's been an issue I've been considering as I've been following Sailfish development, so I thought I'd get your take.

    Again, people should definitely use and try whatever they like; I just thought I'd clarify some of the functionality of BB10 vs. Jolla.
    ppeters914 likes this.
    08-29-19 03:22 AM
  10. pdr733's Avatar
    You say you tried to load LineageOS to your Nexus 6P. Did you look up on xda-developers or ask about your problem? B/c the 6P was a very popular device with tinkereres / custom ROM ppl, and would be surprised if LOS wasnt available for it. Under LOS you can avoid google if you dont flash any gapps during/after install. It completely works without anything google, you may not able to use apps (3rd party apps not those included in the core LOS) which require it
    08-29-19 05:06 AM
  11. scrannel's Avatar
    Just a general response to Sailor's post. I actually find BB10 a more intuitive interface than Android. Even with EOL looming I still prefer my Z30 and will use it as my second line phone until I can't.
    08-29-19 07:53 AM
  12. ppeters914's Avatar
    Just a general response to Sailor's post. I actually find BB10 a more intuitive interface than Android. Even with EOL looming I still prefer my Z30 and will use it as my second line phone until I can't.
    I realize we all have our likes and dislikes, and the human animal is good at adapting to new environments, but I have to agree here.

    I moved to Android running on an LG G7 almost a year ago, and added the BB Suite for the Hub, Email (err.....Inbox ), and Keyboard, none of which work as well or as seamlessly as they did in BB10. The quirks between Google Contacts and BB Contacts continue to frustrate and annoy.

    I don't have specific examples, but I still run into "Really? That was so much easier on BB10" when doing something in Android.

    My two centavos.....spend freely.
    08-29-19 10:28 AM
  13. Thud Hardsmack's Avatar
    I suppose that depends on how you define long for the startup, but BB10 devices tend to boot up within a minute. Shutdown is even faster.
    Maybe true for Passport, Z10 takes 1:45 to boot.

    With respect, this is simply false. You can swipe down with one finger from the top and get exactly the same response as you would with two fingers (if for some reason you wanted to use two) with the exception of a very few rare configuration circumstances.
    One finger swipe is app settings from while in an app, unless they're in an overflow menu. Or they're in both locations. If trying to reach system settings while in an app it's a two-finger swipe from the top. Unless you're on the Home screen or in the Hub, then it's a one-finger swipe. Plus the Hub doesn't have app settings accessible from the top, they're only in the overflow menu.

    Toggling airplane mode is instantaneous on all BB10 devices.
    Sometimes. The mobile connection doesn't always like to let go right away.

    I'm not sure what you mean by "switching mobile network manually," but all network switching is instantaneous and (assuming you have another data connection, such as wireless) that connection is maintained while doing any mobile network maintenance.
    One caveat: if he means manually switching to WiFi and shutting off mobile while something is using the connection, then whatever's using the connection will hang. But that's user error, not the device's fault. It could be he means the mobile connection severs on its own while manually switching to WiFi, that's weird and something I can't replicate; but if he means changing the connection technology, there shouldn't be any interruptions.
    08-29-19 11:50 AM
  14. bb10adopter111's Avatar
    If privacy is what you're after, I would consider waiting for the Librem phone to arrive. It's purpose built to give you more control over u our information.

    But don't count on mainstream apps being available, other than Web Apps where they exist.

    Https://puri.sm/products/librem-5

    Posted with my trusty Z10
    08-29-19 12:10 PM
  15. conite's Avatar
    No he has to go get an Android or iOS phone.
    Only if you want a fleshed-out ecosystem.

    There are, of course, many people that can do quite well scrounging around on the edges.
    Last edited by conite; 08-29-19 at 02:47 PM.
    08-29-19 01:05 PM
  16. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    A mechanic might have no problem carrying tools and spare parts and regularly wrenching on the side of the road to keep an old car on the road, and might accept range restrictions and speed restrictions as the price of the car, but no mainstream driver would willingly put up with that.

    Similarly, a programmer/developer may be comfortable with a mobile OS with lots of app and service limitations and having to rely on alternative sources to get things, but no mainstream user will put up with that experience.
    Mecca EL likes this.
    08-29-19 02:41 PM
  17. bb10adopter111's Avatar
    A mechanic might have no problem carrying tools and spare parts and regularly wrenching on the side of the road to keep an old car on the road, and might accept range restrictions and speed restrictions as the price of the car, but no mainstream driver would willingly put up with that.

    Similarly, a programmer/developer may be comfortable with a mobile OS with lots of app and service limitations and having to rely on alternative sources to get things, but no mainstream user will put up with that experience.
    Agreed. Users who want iOS or Android apps should probably just get an iPhone or Android device.

    But for those who don't want those apps, having a phone that offers calling, messaging, email, calendar, contacts, notes AND a great browsing experience, with enhanced privacy protections like kill switches for cellular and GPS, is very intriguing.

    Posted with my trusty Z10
    Troy Tiscareno likes this.
    08-29-19 05:03 PM
  18. app_Developer's Avatar
    A mechanic might have no problem carrying tools and spare parts and regularly wrenching on the side of the road to keep an old car on the road, and might accept range restrictions and speed restrictions as the price of the car, but no mainstream driver would willingly put up with that.

    Similarly, a programmer/developer may be comfortable with a mobile OS with lots of app and service limitations and having to rely on alternative sources to get things, but no mainstream user will put up with that experience.
    As someone who used to write apps and can figure a lot of this out, I don’t want to! My own phone and computer just need to work reliably. They can’t crash because I have no patience for that. And if I want to look at an app or buy a new something and want the app for it or whatever, I really just want to tap download in a reputable store and be done with it. I’m not on any of the manufacturer or OS teams, so I just carry what works with minimal fuss and maximum actual safety (for actual threats that actual people like me face)
    Troy Tiscareno and ppeters914 like this.
    08-29-19 05:24 PM
  19. EFats's Avatar
    As someone who used to write apps and can figure a lot of this out, I don’t want to! My own phone and computer just need to work reliably. They can’t crash because I have no patience for that. And if I want to look at an app or buy a new something and want the app for it or whatever, I really just want to tap download in a reputable store and be done with it. I’m not on any of the manufacturer or OS teams, so I just carry what works with minimal fuss and maximum actual safety (for actual threats that actual people like me face)
    Same sentiment here. Yes, I could figure it out. I do more complicated stuff as part of my job. But I don't want to. Right now in my part of the world, I have to jump through hoops and hide my location just to purchase and download Sailfish. (Yes, I emailed them asking if I could just buy it from them and answer was no).
    If all it mean was downloading an autoloader, click run and wait an hour, that's what I would put up with to try.

    Right now there is so much sketchy apps on Google store it is really annoying.

    BB10 runs happily still for me even if unsupported. (That nonsense about being supported is...nonsense. Even Windows 10 gets monthly patches still, BB10 gets zero).

    Not having some apps that are apparently "necessary " have not held me back in life or work and as far as I can tell, I get way more done than those around me that have those apps so go figure...
    And as I love pointing out time and again, I work for a large tech company supplying bleeding edge tech to the likes of FB and Google. None of the engineers rely on any apps to work with each other across companies. None of the standards bodies that come up with the stuff that the networks and equipment use to interoperate together use any "apps" or social media to get their work done.

    There are many senior people in and around my neighbourhood that seem to go about their lives just fine without "apps". They carry a phone just to talk and text or email. They are happy and fully integrated in society, they are not outcasts.

    Posted via CB10
    08-30-19 02:05 PM
  20. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    you could run something like PostmarketOS.
    From the PostmarketOS website: "Alpha version. Calls don't work, etc. Only suitable for hackers."
    09-02-19 10:51 AM
  21. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    Right now there is so much sketchy apps on Google store it is really annoying.
    Agreed. On top of that, I have developed a serious dislike for anything Google. I just can't stand that company.
    09-02-19 10:53 AM
  22. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    You say you tried to load LineageOS to your Nexus 6P. Did you look up on xda-developers or ask about your problem? B/c the 6P was a very popular device with tinkereres / custom ROM ppl, and would be surprised if LOS wasnt available for it. Under LOS you can avoid google if you dont flash any gapps during/after install. It completely works without anything google, you may not able to use apps (3rd party apps not those included in the core LOS) which require it
    I tried numerous times to install LineageOS. Dunno why I was unable to do it. Maybe I was following bad instructions or maybe I'm not very bright when it comes to these sorts of things (I'd bet on the latter).
    09-02-19 10:54 AM
  23. ron_jeremy's Avatar
    I would consider waiting for the Librem phone to arrive.
    Yes, that device is on my radar. I'm pretty disappointed in the price but I might just have to pull the trigger & support them. A few days ago I installed pureOS on my Macbook Pro for testing.
    09-02-19 12:01 PM
  24. BronzeBeard's Avatar
    From the PostmarketOS website: "Alpha version. Calls don't work, etc. Only suitable for hackers."
    Calls are working on nexus 5. And several other devices are partly supported. Data works on even more. Not to mention it isn't the only Linux game in town. There are several others with various levels of support.

    And yes, as I mentioned, usage of these OS is beyond the technical level 99.5% of this forum.

    Posted via CB10
    Dunt Dunt Dunt and ppeters914 like this.
    09-03-19 11:08 AM

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