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Librem 13 laptop offers unbridled privacy for a price

librem 13 laptop offers unbridled privacy for a price
Image used with permission by copyright holder
When you’re buying a laptop, you might expect to receive a clean slate — but in practice, your brand new PC is likely filled with pre-installed software. Whether or not you have any want or need for it, it falls to you to get rid of it, otherwise it’s set to take up space for the lifetime of your computer.

Last year, a company launched a crowdfunding campaign with the hopes of providing a different option. Purism raised $475,000 to produce the first manufacturing run of the Librem 15, a laptop that promises to free users from the shackles of what the company calls “mystery software.”

The success of the campaign has now prompted Purism to launch a 13-inch model of the Librem. Once again, everything about the device is geared towards a private experience for the user. You won’t find any unexpected software lurking on its hard drive, and it can even be outfitted with physical kill switches to make sure your microphone, webcam and wireless signal turn off when you tell them to.

The system runs a form of Linux known as PureOS, and packs an Intel Core i5 processor that MaximumPC reports has been modified to run unsigned BIOS code. Users can opt in for up to 16GB of RAM and an SSD as big as 1TB.

However, a computer with the specs and the security on offer here doesn’t come cheap. The standard model of the Librem 13 will retail for $1,649, although pre-ordering the system will knock $200 off that price. However, both the component upgrades and the aforementioned kill switches are being offered as paid additions, which could swell that price even further depending on your needs.

The crowdfunding campaign for the Librem 13 is set to run until August 3, 2015.

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Brad Jones
Brad is an English-born writer currently splitting his time between Edinburgh and Pennsylvania. You can find him on Twitter…
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