Much motivation and inspiration was received by the participants and team from the 4th Volla Community Days on June 18-19. More than 230 participants watched our livestream with presentations, interviews and discussions. 20 participants took the opportunity to talk to the Volla team on site at our location in Remscheid, to ask questions and exchange ideas. Partners reported about the Volla Phone for confidential patient data or the smartphone for visually impaired people.
The Volla community is growing. And internationally. This year, participants traveled to Bergisches Land from as far away as Spain, Russia, Ukraine and the Netherlands. From Berlin and Stuttgart our dealers The Latest and Urbanbird came live with a video greeting. Thereby they led through the experience world of their stores for innovative, young products. Prospective customers can be advised here and take our Volla Phones in the hand and try out.
A recording of the event can be found on our Youtube channel.
In his opening speech, Volla founder Dr. Jörg Wurzer reviewed the young history of the company. In 2020, supporters of a crowd funding via Kickstarter enabled the development of the Volla Phone, which was delivered in October of the same year. Not even a year later, the rugged variant Volla Phone X was launched. After selling more than 5,500 devices in over 55 countries around the world, bunt is set to ship the Volla Phone 22 this July. With 1000% of the funding goal, the crowd funding campaign on Kickstarter closed.
But the Volla Phones are just the beginning of an exciting story. Dr. Jörg Wurzer pointed to the big picture behind Volla for a secure and independent communications infrastructure. "An alternative is more important than ever," the founder emphasized, referring to recent developments such as the European Union's Digital Service Act in his presentation.
You can also download and read the entire presentation here.
Last but not least, the attendees learned details about the Volla Phone 22, the new Volla OS with signal integration, security mode and multi-boot function. Two samples in black and white offered the opportunity to hold the new model in hand. The model combines an elegant and minimalist design and powerful hardware with a more advanced Volla OS,
Florian Leeber, senior community member of the UBports Foundation reports on the latest developments of the alternative mobile operating system Ubuntu Touch. Users can look forward to many improvements. The community is working on support for phone calls on the 4G network (VoLTE), which has already completely replaced the 2G network in the U.S. and will soon do so in Euroopa. Waydroid is also to be integrated, an extension of the operating system that allows Android apps to be used. Support for eSIM and data backup are also planned. Download the full presentation as a PDF here.
Meanwhile, the Volla developer team is involved in the further development of Ubuntu Touch beyond the customization for Volla Phones.
In an interview, Jörg Wissing, Senior Product & Business Development Manager Gigaset Communications GmbH, explained the production of Volla Phones in the highly automated and flexible manufacturing facility at the German site in Bochum. The type of manufacturing allows for both high, consistent quality and competitive pricing. Among the hardware trends Wissing sees are replaceable batteries and improved cameras, as in the Volla Phone 22. In addition to larger displays, he also sees a need for small formats again in the future.
On the sofa of the spacious open area of coWORLD, Volla's headquarters, Robert Šmorhaj, Partner Manager eVenture Ltd. takes questions from the moderator and the participants. The company operates the VPN service hide.me for protected Internet connections that prevent the network operator from tracking activities and help to remain anonymous. It also makes journalistic content that has been blocked in a user's country for political reasons accessible again. Šmorhaj explained how hide.me does not record user activity and provides the highest level of security by extending the Wireguard protocol.
With Dr. Luis Falcon, President of GNU Solidario from Spain, a new partner of the Volla Alliance presented the use of the alternative smartphones from Germany. The hospital management and patient information systems developed with the GNU Foundation are designed to let patients own their data and decide with which doctors and therapists they share which data. In doing so, the open source software ensures both transparency and low cost, which both benefits and reduces the burden on the healthcare system. Falcon announced that the patient data management app will be available on the Volla Phone. We will provide coverage of this exciting project. The full presentation is also available for download here.
Manuel Diaz Ferreiro, founder and director of Procer Technologias from Argentina impressed with a demonstration of a smartphone for the visually impaired. Here, the smartphone recognizes not only texts on documents and in books, but also in the environment and can read them aloud to users. To take advantage of the experience in developing Linux software, the company decided against iOS or Android. Here, the Ubuntu Touch option of the Volla Phone provides ideal platform and in combination with the high-resolution 48 MP camera and high processing power, an ideal condition to introduce the smartphone for the visually impaired into the market.
Community developer Caue Rego spontaneously agreed to present his project of a personal search engine to help users find familiar, personal information from e-mails to photos to web bookmarks quickly and easily in a central location. The ambitious project is published under the name Achoz on Github as open source software. Part of the idea is that users operate the search engine themselves and are and remain in possession of their personal data. One participant suggested picking up the concept for the Springboard in Volla OS and having personal information easily and confidentially at hand on the Volla Phones play. This fits with the Volla founder and Volla Launcher developer's idea of providing an interface for Springboard extensions. Analogous to the "skills" of Amazon's Alexa, developers could teach the smart text box more skills in the form of a plugin. Dr Wurzer invited community developers to contribute to the plugin architecture. More information about Achoz can be found here. The source code of the Volla launcher can also be found on Github.
Our young Volla developer Luka Panio gave a tutorial on the second day of the event on how to customize an alternative mobile operating system for the muli boot feature of the Volla Phone 22, using Manjaro OS as an example to show live how developers can proceed to prepare their system and make it available as a choice for installation. The tutorial is also available on our Youtube channel as a recording. Attendees were also able to see the launch of Sailfish OS and a tour of the important features on the Volla Phone 22. Community developer Adam Pigg had prepared a suitable version of the Finnish operating system. If you want to offer an OS for the multi-boot function afterwards, you can contact the Volla team right here.
We are already looking forward to the next event for our Volla community: The pickup day of the Volla Phone 22 in Remscheid, Stuttgart and Berlin. More about this soon.
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