What better way to motivate youngsters to take up electrical engineering than getting them to build something themselves? This Ringo DIY Mobile Phone is a neat little open source package, which comes with everything needed to build a mobile phone from scratch. Well almost scratch. You do have to do a bit of soldering, but the boards come ready made. So no clean rooms required.
The estimated build time is a reasonable 5 hours – for an 11 year old with some adult supervision. But the best thing is it comes with its own tool kit, and community help forums. OK, so it’s not Android, no games or apps, but as a fun learning project it’s got to be up there with building a roller coaster in your garden we reckon.
For the more adventurous souls, the handset is also hackable, since it’s designed around Arduino compatible components. You can buy it in eight different colours, and it comes ready for your country’s network. You can even pay a bit extra and get it delivered ready assembled. All for a very reasonable £118 ($164 ish) for the base version. Just don’t expect any 5G style smartphone functionality, OK?
“This neat little device is an open source mobile phone that you can build yourself.
Besides that, Ringo is also an educational device shaped like a mobile phone compatible with all mobile networks.
Its purpose: to motivate people to explore, learn and create something new in a fun and interesting way.”