In a nutshell: Research has launched a crowdfunding campaign for Pocket Reform, the mini laptop it first announced nearly nine months ago. The Pocket Reform on Crowd Supply does not deviate too far from what we were shown last June. It features a 7-inch Full HD display (1,920 x 1,200 pixels, 310 PPI) that is powered by a modular NXP i.MX8M Plus (four Arm Cortex-A53 cores running at 1.8GHz), which can be swapped out for a more powerful processor (and probably should be considering the Cortex-A53 dates all the way back to 2012).
Other noteworthy hardware includes a 60-key, backlit mechanical keyboard with ortholinear matrix and N-key rollover support, a 15mm micro-optical trackball with four buttons, 128GB of eMMC flash memory (plus an NVMe SSD slot and a micro-SD card slot for expansion), and dual li-ion batteries that supply about four hours of runtime between each charge.
Pocket Reform features two USB-C ports (one supports power delivery charging), a micro HDMI connector and an ix Industrial Ethernet interface. Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac is also supported, as is Bluetooth 5.0. The machine measures 7.87 inches × 4.96 inches × 1.77 inches (20cm × 12.6cm × 4.5cm) and weighs around 2.4 pounds (1,100g).
Its big selling point is that it is “modular, upgradable, recyclable, and reusable,” and features open source hardware and an open source system controller.
Interested parties can support the project (essentially pre-order the laptop) from today starting at $899 for the black model with your choice of light linear key switches or clicky switches. A variant sporting a purple chassis is also on offer for $969, or you can spring for a kit that includes a 1TB NVMe SSD, a sleeve, a handbook and a poster for $1,299.
It’d seem like a tough sell given the asking price but that does not seem to be an issue. The crowdfunding campaign has already surpassed its funding goal and there are still six weeks left. Orders placed now are expected to ship by October 17, 2023, we are told.