Earlier this week, entrepreneur and “Bitcoin millionaire” Erik Finman introduced a new smartphone called the “Freedom Phone.” He billed it as a phone tailor-made for conservatives who fear being censored by those evil deep staters in Silicon Valley. Not only does this phone supposedly not collect your data, but it has its own “PatriApp” store that doesn’t boot off apps.
But as Daily Kos’ Aldous J. Pennyfarthing noted on Thursday, it turns out that this phone is yet another grift in a long litany of grifts tailored for the MAGA crowd. A little digging revealed it is little more than a repurposed Chinese-made phone, which Finman is selling at a substantial markup—some five times the list price. Its much-ballyhooed “FreedomOS” is actually a mishmash of operating systems descended from the Android OS. There is literally no information on the phone’s specs, and no information on how Finman plans to keep malware off his customers’ phones. For those reasons, a number of experts have branded it a security and privacy nightmare.
Well, it turns out that even Trump supporters are cool, to put it mildly, about this phone that was supposedly designed for them.