Thursday, 03 January 2013 05:29

Will Ubuntu be the next big mobile OS?

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Canonical has introduced a new version of Ubuntu, specifically designed for use with smartphones. This is an interesting move and shows Ubuntu’s desire to push into a wider market. A demonstration of the OS's ability is planned soon and will be performed on a Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

Ubuntu for mobile phones is based on the Android kernel and drivers, but since it's not using the JVM (Java Virtual Machine), Canonical promises the full exploitation of power from the devices, modest memory requirements, and quick work on weaker hardware. The New OS will support both ARM and x86 processors with the minimum hardware requirements being; 1 GHz ARM processor (Cortex A9) processor, 512 MB RAM, 4 GB of flash memory and a multi-touch screen.

Its interface uses moves from the edge of the screen, similar to Windows 8. So moving a finger to the left across the screen reveals a list of applications, a move back to the right side brings back the last used application, and move from the bottom of the context menu reveals the application (again, very similar to Windows 8). On the upper side of the screen a notification list or shortcut to settings is given. One interesting thing is the ability to use the classic desktop environment on cell phones with a big screen (or connected to a larger screen).

There are currently no plans for smartphone devices based on this OS, but unofficially, the installation will be supported on all devices that will be shipped with Android. The first smartphones with Ubuntu will arise during the 2014. The development version for Galaxy Nexus will be available within a few weeks for download.

[Ed – The choice of first device is interesting as Samsung has made comments to the effect that the Smartphone market needs a new OS while many others have expressed a desire to break away from Java (which is a terrible resource hog). If this move works we could see an alternative to the stock Android OS and one that could compete very well in the market.]

Do you think Ubuntu has a shot in the mobile market? Tell us in our Forum

Read 2968 times Last modified on Thursday, 03 January 2013 05:33

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