Ubuntu smartphones will begin shipping in October, Canonical founder says

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from Omaha, NE
Published: February 6, 2013

Ubuntu for phones

When Ubuntu for phones was first made officially official, it was revealed that we may not see smartphones running the Linux-based operating system until the final quarter of 2013 or early in 2014. According to a new comment from Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth, though, the debut of Ubuntu smartphones will be right at the start of that timeframe.

Shuttleworth has told the Wall Street Journal that Ubuntu-powered smartphones will be available to consumers starting in October 2013. He went on to say that the phones will initially be offered in two large markets, and while he wouldn't specify whether or not North America will be one of them, he did tease that the region is "absolutely a key market for Ubuntu." Shuttleworth also said that Ubuntu for phones has garnered some interest from carriers that want to see a platform steal some share from Android and iOS, but he opted not to name any specific operators.

One of the main features of Ubuntu for phones are its gestures, which allow a user to do things like access content and switch between apps by swiping to the different edges of the handset's display. Shuttleworth also pointed out that the phones can be docked to bigger displays, connected wirelessly to keyboards and have Windows apps streamed to them from servers thanks to the fact that they're actually running the full desktop version of Ubuntu.

While October is still eight months away, it's expected that developers will have access to a version of Ubuntu for the Galaxy Nexus in late February. That ought to help give us a better idea of what Ubuntu for phones is all about and could also help drum up some support from app developers. Has what we've seen of Ubuntu for phones so far gotten you excited for what's coming to market later this year?

Via Ars Technica, Wall Street Journal