Fernvale: An Open Hardware and Software Platform, Based on the (nominally) Closed-Source MT6260 SoC

A Lawful Method for Converting Closed IP into Open IP

bunnie and Xobs

We introduce Fernvale, a reverse-engineered, open hardware and software platform based upon Mediatek's MT6260 value phone SoC. The MT6260 is the chip that powers many of the $10 GSM feature phones produced by the Shanzhai.

Fernvale is made available as open-licensed schematics, board layouts, and an RTOS based upon the BSD-licensed NuttX, as well as a suite of open tools for code development and firmware upload. We discuss our technical reverse engineering efforts, as well as our methodology to lawfully import IP from the Shanzhai ecosystem into the Maker ecosystem. We hope to establish a repeatable, if not labor-intensive, model for opening up previously closed IP of interest, thereby outlining a path to leveling the playing field for lawful Makers.

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