/e/OS has about 40 team members mentioned on their website, including regular contributors - so its not 40 full-time employees.
I think the best chance to get something going in this field is to try to get public funding for a research project around something like universal accessibility or some such.
Programmers from all over the world work on their free time on projects, some foundations exist supported by individual donations and companies' funding. Some companies release their code as F/LOSS.
There is no single entity that dictates what software is built and moreover people working on F/LOSS are (I would say) on average more aware/sensitive of their work's impact. I know for example that GNOME people are actively trying to better accessibility and would welcome the help (your time and skill or donations, or both).
Also, I am contributing to F/LOSS code since about 20 years. You might think I am "fundamentally misunderstanding" things. I believe I just have a different opinion on things then you. Lets leave it at that.
You can be the owner of a publishing house and advocate free speech and still you might not have the resources to publish every worthy book.
If there are more contributors then the accessibility will improve, but unlike a commercial project you can't just oblige/order someone to do it. You have to motivate people - with the right skill set - to donate their private time to this cause over all the other causes (or non-programming activities they could support).
So great to be idealistic but you have to accept your own limitations. Maybe getting something to work for most people is simply a more achievable mid-term goal than addressing each special case, no matter how important.
Not just some members, but the founder members and in fact the organisation that they set up to promote free software, the FSF, which campaigns on the basis that non-free software is "An exercise of unjust power".
As for not yet achieved, the free software movement was founded in 1984. Richard Stallman was celebrating the achievements of 15 years of free software back in 1999.
I'm sorry, but your conflation of Open Source with Free Software would appall Stallman and the FSF who go to great lengths to emphasise that FLOSS is quite separate and has had a very specific meaning right from the start.
Thanks for this comment. I hear this a lot from people who actually know about F/LOSS but were not able (or interested) to switch from proprietary solutions because their needs are simply not handled in an appropriate way by F/LOSS.
In the past, when I was still more enthusiastic about free software, I heard their words but they somehow didn't really sink in. These days when all I hear if funding and the lack thereof, I start to get what they were saying, and I am actually pretty concerned about this.
The worst outcome we could have is that free software advocacy actually works and these inaccessible solutions dominate the market. This would mean that free software actively pushs disabled people out of our society. Thinking about this, I stand to my massively downvoted comment. This would be a horrible outcome. So as long as there is no solution to the "why should I think about these fucks" or "nobody is paying me to care for disabled people" it would be a bad thing to further advocate free software.
Where did you get the impression that anyone is "unwilling"???
Do you have an example of this, or is it, as other comments point out, just a resourcing issue?
Chicken and egg thing.
Why do you act like I want to take technology away from anyone?
Go ask Microsoft, Google and Apple how much money they spend on accessibility and then compare that to the income of /e/OS.
How would you fix that resource problem if not by trying to get better funding?
Please explain. Why was Steve Jobs able to explain to Apple that in the case of Accessibility, ROI has to be ignored, because it is a social responsibility to build a platform that works for everyone. Why, to the contrary, is the free software movement trying to argue that this is absolutely impossible because of lack of funding?
On topic: I like that /e/ foundation is selling new and refurbished phones with the OS installed. It (hopefully) gives them some income and it helps get this OS in hands of users who would rather not tempt the goddess of bricks.
/e/ is a project started by Gaël Duval, founder of Mandrake Linux (nowadays known as Mandriva).
See   
It consists of:
an installable mobile operating system for smartphones, which is forked from Android and strongly “ungoogled”
a set of sorted and improved default open source applications
various online services that are linked to the mobile operating system, such as: a meta search engine for the web, drive (with synchronization), mail, calendar, notes, tasks.
But first check FP3/FP3+ Network specifications below to see whether the 4G LTE bands of your carrier are supported:
In case you need it for your specific situation, the network specifications for the FP3/FP3+:
Configuration Dual-SIM, Dual-Standby (DSDS)
SIM Sockets 2 x Nano-SIM (4FF)
Network Technology 2G / 3G / 4G LTE - Advanced
GSM/GPRS/EDGE Quad-band: 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz
UMTS: Band 1 (2100 MHz); Band 2 (900 MHz); Band 5 (850MHz); Band 8 (900 MHz)
3G Max Downlink Speed - 42 Mbps
3G Max Uplink - 11 Mbps
4G / LTE Advanced Band 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 7 / 13 / 20 / 26
4G Max Downlink Speed - 300 Mbps
4G Max Uplink Speed - 75 Mbps
It would be useful to list some more specifics. Is this built on LineageOS? Does it come with their own cloud services? Can you opt out of that? How close do you track LineageOS?
The video shows someone installing the Facebook app. That puts a limit to how de-googled this could possibly be. How are those products distributed? Can anything from the Play store be installed the same way?
Happy user of LineageOS here, but there is definitively room for a more complete system with best of breed open source apps installed for those services most people require (mail, chat, maps etc.). Alternative application stores makes me wary however, F-Droid does an admirable job but compared to something like Debian they are still tiny.
Yes, it is built on LineageOS, though I am not sure how closely it is tracked.
They have their own cloud services, but you can opt out. You can use your own Nextcloud server as well, which I think is pretty neat: you can have a convenient cloud-based experience (contact and calendar sync etc.) with the stock /e/OS installation, while also having ownership of your data in your Nextcloud instance. (Their own servers are also heavily based on Nextcloud.)
Regarding app stores: I think it is the weakest point. F-Droid is nice but not enough, the /e/OS App Store is a bit murky for me; for most of the non-FOSS apps I use the Aurora Store, which seems trustworthy to me so far.
for apps that need google, microG is avaiable, and aparently does the job. (i don't use apps that need google, so i don't even have microG activated)
https://microg.org/ is the core that makes it possible to create the /e/ distribution, but good luck finding that in any of /e/'s promotional material.
MicroG also accepts donations through Liberapay and GitHub Sponsors, if you want to contribute directly:
Weak sauce, if you ask me. But you're right, they do mention it.
site:e.foundation -site:community.e.foundation -site:gitlab.e.foundation "microg"
I too am critical towards /e/ because I think that they have done very little own work for now. But hiding their reliance on other OSS projects isn't something I'd call them out for.
that and effectively auditing the android for google dependencies and privacy violations, i think are already a quite substantial contribution.
it is also worth considering how many resources it took to achieve that, so i think it's unfair to say they didn't do much as if anyone with a few weekends to spare could have achieved the same.
It’s also ok to not define the API immediately, but to wait a few years to understand what the API should actually look like and then publicly define it for v2.0 once you have enough feedback about what you did wrong.
I don't need that many apps, but the few I do need are very specific, such as the local public transportation app, and bankID from my bank.
Can I just download those from the normal google app store?