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Ubuntu Touch Developers Aim for Daily Phone Usability Before June

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the openmoko-repeats-itself dept.

Ubuntu 83

colinneagle writes with the latest Ubuntu Touch news. From the article: "The team behind Ubuntu Touch (aka 'Ubuntu for Phones') have committed to pushing forward to a ready-to-use version of the OS, one that the group will use to 'eat their own dog food,' by the end of May. What that means: Over the next few weeks, the team behind Ubuntu Touch is going to be attempting to implement enough functionality to make it possible to use Ubuntu on your phone (such as the Nexus 4) on a day-to-day basis. At which point their development team will be doing exactly that." The developers are aiming just to have basic functionality working by the end of the month: calls, sms, data over wifi and cellular, a working address book, and preservation of user data across OS flashes.

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Is this pre-news? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681625)

Seems like it would be better to report results rather than intentions

Re:Is this pre-news? (4, Interesting)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year ago | (#43681689)

that the thing though if they waited it would get no attention from the community and being open source the community are the developers.
On the other hand though this is just another attempt to make ubuntu-phone Frankenstein that will never pan out. remember ubuntu mobile (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubuntu_Mobile) and there was ubuntu moblin remix. oh and don't forget the aborted ubuntu android compatibility layer meant to run android binaries on top of ubuntu then a few months latter they about-face and try to run ubuntu on top of android. If we could every get a free/opensource tablet with drivers in the mainline kernal and a gnu/linux and desent specs i would stand in line for it, but until then i will have to be content with android

Re:Is this pre-news? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681881)

My disgusting, fetid cock + your rancid, feces-infested Bayer Aspirin hole = cum-covered feces fiesta! What say you?

Re:Is this pre-news? (4, Interesting)

sabri (584428) | about a year ago | (#43681743)

Seems like it would be better to report results rather than intentions

I disagree. I'm sure a number of people would volunteer to be part of that alpha test and report bugs without crying first. The more people test, the more bugs they find, the better the first release will be. I'd volunteer if my phone was not a company phone.

Re:Is this pre-news? (1)

mcrbids (148650) | about a year ago | (#43682307)

Forget the latest phones, they'll run whatever O/S they came with. I have a Razr Maxx HD and I'm so in love with it's DAYS of battery life and snappy performance that I won't change anything. (for now)

but, I have a fairly recent model Samsung Stratosphere that's about a year or so old. It's the phone I had before the Razr, and while it's no award winning phone, it still has relatively decent hardware. It runs Android 2.3, has a DVD quality video, Ghz processor, 512 RAM, 5 MP camera, 4 GB internal storage and a 16 GB SD card. It's 4G capable, but since I have no contract on it, it's wifi only nowadays...

It's pretty similar in "horsepower" as the ancient P4 I still have running behind the TV as a file server for movies... (only it has a TB HDD) It's a rather capable platform and I'd donate it in a flat second if there was some way to run/test Ubuntu or Fedora mobile on it. (I'm generally a Fedora fan)

Re:Is this pre-news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43684399)

You sound like you know what you're doing, so why would you use a p4 instead of a raspberry pi or a router with a USB port (or any small ARM product) for a file server? Or...do you live in some place that could use more heating and has free energy?

Re:Is this pre-news? (4, Funny)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681921)

Seems like it would be better to report results rather than intentions

Being overly excited leads to premature enunciation.

Re:Is this pre-news? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682595)

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Re:Is this pre-news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682981)

In many ways I like Ubuntu but they do have a history of this sort of thing.

Ubuntu TV anyone : http://www.ubuntu.com/tv

before june FRST! (1, Redundant)

NemoinSpace (1118137) | about a year ago | (#43681627)

or as soon as it compiles

Anyone that actually uses this is insane. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681701)

Why in all that is holy would I put something like this on my expensive phone that I rely on for my income? I wouldn't even put it on my old phone out of curiosity.

Re:Anyone that actually uses this is insane. (0, Offtopic)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681933)

Why in all that is holy would I put something like this on my expensive phone that I rely on for my income?

"Man with perfectly valid & rational question gets modded troll on /. More groundbreaking news at 10"

Re:Anyone that actually uses this is insane. (1)

deusmetallum (1607059) | about a year ago | (#43682665)

Well no one is actually asking *anyone* to put it on their phone right now because it's still in development. They're just looking for testers right now. If you can't spare time or money to test then don't worry about it. If you can, sure, go ahead.

Re:Anyone that actually uses this is insane. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43683551)

Why in all that is holy would I put something like this on my expensive phone that I rely on for my income?

Well I dont know, maybe you wouldn't but I can tell you why I would. (If you don't know why you would, why are you asking us?)

For one, it is promised to function as a "real computer" when you connect it to a keyboard and monitor, able to run desktop apps in a real windowing system with real multiple windows, not the dumbed down Android experience.

Also unlike with Android, with Ubuntu touch it is likely to be closer to Linux than Android is (even though yes android is based on linux originally) and thus be a more open platform based on largely open source apps rather htan closed apps doing hell knows what as is common on Android.

YOU might not want that, but some of us do.

Re:Anyone that actually uses this is insane. (1)

PixetaledPikachu (1007305) | about a year ago | (#43685241)

Why in all that is holy would I put something like this on my expensive phone that I rely on for my income? I wouldn't even put it on my old phone out of curiosity.

Something like what? The preview version was clearly aimed for developer, and not ready to be used as a daily driver, they even explicitly tell you that . If you're not planning to develop something for the platform, why the heck would you put it on your phone?

Why (2, Interesting)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43681769)

I think there's a big question of, "Why?" Is Ubuntu worried about becoming obsolete? Do they believe in the Microsoft motto of, "one UI everywhere?" What is their motivating factor? It's definitely not a response to demand, because people aren't exactly lining up to put this thing on their phone.....

Re:Why (0)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#43681801)

Given their stated strategic objectives, they should have achieved this particular milestone already. Why commit the atrocity that is Unity otherwise?

Re:Why (1)

bondsbw (888959) | about a year ago | (#43681811)

http://www.ubuntu.com/tablet [ubuntu.com]

I love this concept. It's the first phone-to-tablet-to-PC concept I've seen that feels somewhat complete.

Re:Why (2)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43682025)

I love this concept. It's the first phone-to-tablet-to-PC concept I've seen that feels somewhat complete

It's great that you like it, it'll remain somewhat complete for the forseeable future.

Re:Why (1)

mrvan (973822) | about a year ago | (#43683179)

I don't buy an android tablet because I want to be able to run my stuff on it without needing a separate "app". I don't like having to learn a new interface because the device is slightly different.

If they get it to work well, I would certainly consider buying a buntu table and I think I will put ubuntu on my current phone when I get a new one. (I am very hesitant to playing with my android phone after bricking the previous one by trying to flash the rom - toying with gadgets is nice but not if I can't make a phone call until I get it right...)

Windows 8 (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#43683367)

I don't buy an android tablet because I want to be able to run my stuff on it without needing a separate "app". I don't like having to learn a new interface because the device is slightly different.

And now you see what Microsoft was doing with Windows 8. It made the desktop version's Start Menu look like the tablet UI so that users of Windows RT and Windows Phone wouldn't have to learn a new interface for a different form factor.

Re:Windows 8 (1)

MrNiCeGUi (302919) | about a year ago | (#43687689)

Except, you know, exactly the reverse, since the number of Windows RT and Windows Phone users who would be familiar with said environments is pretty much insignificant and they are selling this to the very numerous Windows PC users, who are thus forced to learn to a new interface.

Microsoft still does not get it. It tried to put a desktop interface on tablets and phones and it failed. Now it's trying the reverse and it's not exactly working either. Putting the same interface everywhere does not make it universal; carefully designing it from the beginning to work for different environments does. Windows Desktop and Windows Phone are specialized interfaces and they suck mightily when utilized outside their intended use case.

Re:Why (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | about a year ago | (#43710085)

(I am very hesitant to playing with my android phone after bricking the previous one by trying to flash the rom - toying with gadgets is nice but not if I can't make a phone call until I get it right...)

ET (Electronics Technician) phone home.

Re:Why (2)

Rhys (96510) | about a year ago | (#43681859)

I actually had it on my phone back in Feb. It wasn't awful. The lack of 3G data was all that got it removed and android put back on... for now, but I'll probably go back to it once I can get 3G data. I might miss my exchange calendar support, but I doubt that'll be long in appearing (who knows, I might even do that).

But I'm not a big app'er. I need a phone dialer, a tiny bit of sms, a web browser, gchat client, and preferably my corp exchange calendar (email optional). Gmail would be nice too but the browser version would fake it.

Re:Why (1)

inglorion_on_the_net (1965514) | about a year ago | (#43681937)

This is the first I've heard of the project, but from a cursory glance at http://www.ubuntu.com/phone [ubuntu.com] , I'm pretty excited. Have the phone for on the go, then dock it and use it as a full PC when at home. Definitely, sign me up!

Re:Why (1)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about a year ago | (#43682617)

This is the first I've heard of the project, but from a cursory glance at http://www.ubuntu.com/phone [ubuntu.com] , I'm pretty excited. Have the phone for on the go, then dock it and use it as a full PC when at home. Definitely, sign me up!

Yeah I love this concept. With the dock for my S4, I can plug in all the peripherals just fine - what I need is the OS support to run full desktop apps on it in this mode. An Ubuntu-like OS would be ideal (though I'd probably try to run Cinnamon or something instead for a DE).

Re:Why (4, Funny)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681939)

Is Ubuntu worried about becoming obsolete?

Of course not. They're actively pursuing it.

Dog 'Food'? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681817)

Okay, total flamebait, but from what I've seen of Ubuntu touch, and especially compared to Nexus 4 stock, isn't that more like eating your own dog crap?

Microsoft buying Ubuntu (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681819)

I give Ubuntu five years before Microsoft pumps and dumps them.

Re:Microsoft buying Ubuntu (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681987)

I give Ubuntu five years before Microsoft pumps and dumps them

Well, Microsoft has proven that they sometimes make really bad decisions.

Hope they fail (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681827)

They failed to take any reasonable market share with Ubuntu on the desktop, so they're trying mobile while at the same time making stupid decisions that ruin their desktop-focused distro even further. Shuttleworth should just give up and leave Linux to its niche, rather than ruin the direction it's taking.

There's nothing wrong with Linux remaining in its niche of geeky and nerdy users. It's worked out well so far.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#43681935)

For something most of people that use it don't exactly buy it, is not unreasonable that is not shown in market share, where sales are taken into account, instead of actual use (and count as sales preloaded OSs in not sold/used yet devices, even if then will be installed over with something else).

And Ubuntu Touch will take a while till it have some actual sale, even if, when is stable enough, gets installed in a lot of existing devices [ubuntu.com] . Only will appear in the map of the "market share" when some vendor actually preinstall it on devices, even if millons have it before that.

Now, if you want to call reality only to what is sold, is up to you, people is free to fool themselves.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

readingaccount (2909349) | about a year ago | (#43681977)

I think he means marketshare to represent usershare - the actual number of users, well, using it as their daily driver on either desktops or laptops. That's still not increased with any particularly measurable amount since Ubuntu first appeared. There have been more users sure, but there are always more users of everything as people start using computers. It's the slice of the overall pie that's remained disappointing.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#43682441)

Is difficult to measure users when you are usually measuring sales, not people actually using it. Indirect hints (like i.e. Steam [webupd8.org] or browsers [w3counter.com] stats) still have to play with the amount of people that follow one trend in one platform vs the amount on another platform (do linux users visit the same sites of the being measured ones? are more or less likely to use steam?), but if we focus in one trend (i.e. in w3counter stats, to have enough historical data) has increased usage over the last years, so, not just absolute numbers has increased, percents too. But yes, numbers are still too low if your intended target is desktop domination.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681981)

Now, if you want to call reality only to what is sold, is up to you, people is free to fool themselves

Indeed, people are entirely free to fool themselves [ubuntu.com] .

Re:Hope they fail (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#43682419)

Sales numbers have no effect on stats reported based I user agent on popular sites like Wikipedia.

Those sites don't suddenly shack up the world by showing radically different than sales numbers in their traffic reports.

What other excuses would you like to try to pretend Linux is magically more popular than it is

Re:Hope they fail (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681965)

It's worked out well so far

I beg to differ, check this [canonical.com] out!

Re: Hope they fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681967)

geeky nerd here, if I have to help people who don't know anything about computers, I'd rather I help them use Linux, as it would make it easier for me. And seeing how I know linux inside and out, I may actually do a good job, unlike on Windows where I'd just install crapwhere, and pretend I care.

Re: Hope they fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682007)

And likewise I'd use Windows because I know it inside and out (as far as you can anyway) and would do a great job too. However unlike you, my knowledge of Windows means I can ensure the user I'm assisting is still able to use all the commercial software that they WANT to use. They don't want to use Libre/OpenOffice, they want MS Office because it's the best and it's also what everyone else uses. Give them what they want, not what YOU want.

Re:Hope they fail (2)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#43681969)

Shuttleworth should just give up and leave Linux to its niche

Linux > Ubuntu.

Besides, people switched to Mint a while back.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43683993)

Besides, people switched to Mint a while back.

I didn't switch because an update fixed my problems, as usual.

If one fails to I'll switch to Mint, but so far Ubuntu is still working well enough for me to where I fear a switch.

Who are these people? Did they actually switch en masse?

Re:Hope they fail (1)

eric_herm (1231134) | about a year ago | (#43684329)

And do they really have no clue on who is doing the work and why reducing income from Canonical is the wisest move ( by not using Ubuntu ( firefox/mozilla/google deal, amazon deal), by not buying CD or stuff on the store, etc ) ?
Even if most of the work come from Debian, and upstream from others company, switching to Mint and then pushing it is just wrong.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#43688495)

Who are these people? Did they actually switch en masse?

Ask these people [pingdom.com] .

Re:Hope they fail (1)

deusmetallum (1607059) | about a year ago | (#43682685)

I would actually like to know what metrics you're using for this.

I've taken a look at http://stats.wikimedia.org/wikimedia/squids/SquidReportOperatingSystems.htm [wikimedia.org] , and it seems that, while it's not a perfect metric, Ubuntu is the only Linux OS (except android) which is actually creating more hits per month since this time last year.

Sure, this is not perfect, but considering that Fedora, Arch, and SUSe are all down and Ubuntu is up, it looks like Ubuntu is getting stronger.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

eric_herm (1231134) | about a year ago | (#43684413)

A disturbing trned is that Blackberry has as much hit than Ubuntu. Given how few people with Blackberry i see around me, that's kinda a eye opener to the bubble most Linux users ( and me too ) are living in.
In fact, the fact that almost no one use Xubuntu to go to wikipedia, that's the biggest part is for "linux others", the fact there seems to be more opensuse users than linux mint users are also interesting, in the sense this totally contradict the perception of some people.

Re:Hope they fail (1)

deusmetallum (1607059) | about a year ago | (#43685451)

The thing is that the preception *here* is completely different to the perception over at sites like OMG!Ubuntu! This place has a hard core tech audience who seem to like things done their way or not at all. As soon as something Ubuntu related gets posted, everyone here starts arguing against it. However, OMG!Ubuntu is a site that has had to constantly change its hosting over the last few years because with each new release, the founder is finding that the current set up can't deal with the new influx of traffic.

Ubuntu is popular, it works extremely well, and contrary to what a lot of people say on here, Canonical is not trying to force unity down your throat, and not trying to destory linux. Canonical is working hard on that Linux Phone that people desperately want but the only thing ./ers seem to have against the Ubuntu phone is that it's not their distro of choice. What I see mentioned here all the time when Canonical start working on something to replace some old tech is that they suffer from NIH (not invented here). Well I put it to slashdot thaters they have their own disease, and it's called NMD - Not My Distro, and that is primarly what causes a lot of the Ubuntu hate.

Android (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681835)

The thing that keeps me from being excited about even the idea of this is that there *is* an open Linux-based environment for phones, and it's called Android. Google runs the development and has a closed license on apps like Maps, Chrome, etc., but, again, there *is* an open Linux-based environment for phones.

There are plenty of places Ubuntu could add value. They could build an alternative to the non-open 'with Google' ecosystem--imagine if Cyanogen were developed with the backing of a larger group like Canonical. They could reinvent some bits of UI like the launcher/keyboard/task switcher. (Amazon hacked up their own ecosystem and UI, just with a buy-from-Amazon focus rather than an open-source focus.) They could do some crazy difficult engineering to get desktop Linux apps running alongside Android .apk's.

Whatever they do, reinventing the foundations of Android isn't where the juice is.

Re:Android (3, Interesting)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#43681915)

I don't think it's fair to place the blame for this on any one company or project, but it's been disappointing to see how inoperable all the smartphone OSes are so far.

It's particularly disappointing when it comes to open source phones, since interoperability was always one of the purported benefits of open technology.

Re:Android (4, Insightful)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#43681999)

I'd like Android a lot better if it weren't so intimately tied to Google. I managed for a decade with my Handspring Visor without any online presence. I don't see the need for my calendar and address book and other data to be strewn across servers that I have no control over. The less of a digital footprint, the better: Less spam, less hacking attempts, less headaches. But Android is pretty much a lame duck without a Google account. So, linux phone without the Google apron strings? Bring it on!

Re: Android (2)

enos (627034) | about a year ago | (#43682405)

Exactly. But more Balkanisation and even more duplication of effort is not the answer.

Why not do something like CyanogenMod where they can keep Android's strengths but fix its weeknesses? I'd also love to not have to involve Google's servers with everything. I missed that the most about the iPhone. But Android is finally shaking off that unfinished feeling, and Ubuntu is 5 years behind.

Re: Android (2)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about a year ago | (#43682631)

Except the Ubuntu phone is on to a fairly good concept here: smartphones are getting powerful enough to become desktop PCs. This is an obvious area where you'd actually want a desktop OS running - or at least very compatible - with the phone.

Where they may get tripped up is the trend towards augmented reality type systems, but that's a ways off and there's plenty of low-level work to be done (since AR falls more into the desktop OS design scale then the phone one).

Re: Android (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#43683483)

smartphones are getting powerful enough to become desktop PCs.

The thing is that desktops have improved in the mean time as well. You can get a high end 8 core desktop with heaps of ram and storage for considerably less than a high end smartphone.

I know which I'd prefer to use if I was actually going to be at a desk.

Re: Android (1)

enos (627034) | about a year ago | (#43692317)

Android is Linux too.

They just recognize that a phone isn't a server or a desktop; it has different constraints. The input methods are completely different, Watts matter, responsiveness matters, etc. The OS is not the limitation. Sensibility is.

I don't see what Ubuntu brings to the table that Android hasn't brought already.

Take the long view, and you'll see: Android sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43688289)

But Android is finally shaking off that unfinished feeling, and Ubuntu is 5 years behind.

Take a longer perspective. Is Android really good or is it good enough? Because when I look at Android, I think "yeah, that's .. ok. I can handle that." But another part of my mind says "This piece of shit is just as much of a piece of shit as Apple's piece of shit." Thirty years from now, you're not going to give a flying fuck who was 5 years ahead or behind, back in 2013; you'll just be glad you're not using the infantile crap people had to settle for, back around then. None of the current mobile OSes are mature in the same way that we think of desktop's (relative!) maturity. None of them.

Disagree? Ok, consider this: BY DEFAULT for every Android phone you can get right now, when you make a phone call to someone you know, it's unencrypted. Think about how fucking absurd that is. You can fit many gigabytes of OTP into something the size of a fingernail for $10, your phone is in the same room as your wife's for several hours per day, and your phone calls to her are unencrypted.

I know, you think I'm writing this in 1975 to make fun of how sad it is, that our comm tech is lagging behind what Claude Shannon coudl have told you back in the 1940s, but no: this is 2013 I'm talking about. It's not just just a few years of tech lag that I'm talking about: we're getting to where it's the better half of a century. Back when the eggheads solved this problem, people didn't have transitor radios yet. A few decades later the tech guys came out with all the parts, waiting for the software guys to use it. A few decade after that, here we are, still saying "maybe some day."

This is one issue among many, in a world of phone tech which is really just barely getting started. Every single phone out there might seem like a serious product at first glance, but they all start to sniff of being some kind of marketing research prototype toy after you use 'em for a little while. They're cool but suck too.

Don't tell me Android is anywhere near to being half "finished." It's maybe 20% finished, just like iOS. It is so not too late for competitors. We need more, a lot more, because it looks like things are sort of already stagnating before they get close to being anywhere near done. All our phones are sorry little disgraceful pieces of shit that no computer enthusiast should ever want to be seen using.. and yet, it's all we have!! That's sad, really sad and competition might be the only hope things will ever get better.

Re:Take the long view, and you'll see: Android suc (1)

enos (627034) | about a year ago | (#43692353)

You want an encrypted phone? Nothing is stopping you. Android happily lets you replace the dialer with your own. Hell, millions do it already. Just most people value price, call quality and having someone to call over encryption. How is Ubuntu going to improve on this?

Don't tell me about being stuck in the past and then try to claim that Ubuntu is better. A Linux system today would be very recognizable to someone from the 80s. You want earth shattering ideas you don't look toward desktop Linux.

When I said unfinished I mean that it feels like an alpha release. As in it has plain and obvious bugs. Those are finally getting worked out. That window is definitely closing fast, as Microsoft has discovered. Ubuntu is just another incompatible me-too system in this respect, except of course it's all just different enough to be incompatible. In that sense it carries on the Linux tradition, I guess.

Re:Android (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43684671)

But Android is pretty much a lame duck without a Google account.

There are basically two big features you miss out on without a google account. One is the Play Store. But by definition, you don't want to use this, if you don't want Google tracking your habits. The other is maps, but there are alternate maps apps. So basically, I don't think there is any truth to this assertion. The only things you give up with your Android phone if you don't use google are things which are by definition "using google".

Until 2.3.7 it was horribly hard to not share location information with Google. That's the only thing about Android that I have found to actually be offensive. Otherwise, you can use a device just fine without Google.

As an aside, my Nook Simple Touch runs Android too, and won't leak any information to Google in stock form. But then, it's only half a device in terms of features, which is why it's an aside and not a main point. Naturally, I added a google account to it, so that I could use market and maps.

Re:Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43688549)

You're forgetting two big ones: address book and calendar.

Re: Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43694929)

Just wait until it becomes practically impossible to use an Android phone without a RealNamePolicy-enforced Google Plus account that turns every app you run and websity you visit into a minefield of +1 icons waiting to get false-triggered by a stray capacitive tap, and makes sharing your 'social search stream' history from the past 5 years one accidental/arm-twisted "ok" (probably thrown at you when you go to watch a video on Youtube) away.

I don't care about Google knowing more about my buying habits and interests than I do, as long as I'm a nameless, faceless 36 year old male from South Florida. I *vehemently* care about having to live in fear that some future employer's HR department might gain access to my search history for the past 20 years, be able to scrutinize my purchases (or even what products I looked at), and do data mining on my friends & family members to find a picture of me from 17 years ago that I personally would have never uploaded or tagged myself doing something with no business of having ever been made public.

Google is progressively turning us into a surveillance state that would have made the East German Stasi jealous, and destroying our freedom to use the Internet in happy anonymous peace. Ubuntu Phone is our best hope for being able to tell Google to go fuck itself the day the decide to make Plus a requirement for using Android.

Re:Android (4, Insightful)

prefec2 (875483) | about a year ago | (#43682789)

As a person, a group of people, or a company, I can do with my time what I want. If I want to develop a second open source phone OS. It is my pleasure or nemesis. If you like it use or contribute to it, if not don't. The same applies to Firefox OS or any other project heading in that direction. What some people miss out in open source is, there is no centralized plan to gain world dominance. The plan is freedom. This includes freedom of choice, but is not limited to it. I also can decide that I want to collaborate with others or that I want to make something completely different. Sometimes these differences are in nuances to the public, but they mean everything to me or my group or my company.

Sometimes I have the feeling, that people blame others just because they choose different paths. Yes I know this results in fragmentation. And too much fragmentation is bad for interoperability and therefore bad for the OSS movement, but multiple phone and tablet operation systems and UIs are not a problem as long as they all support open communication standards. In the end fragmentation often resulted in new standards on data exchange and communications, which allowed us to work together, but still try out our own ideas.

NOT (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43693711)

Surely M$ will call everything deviating from their insane, patent-protected ideas "fragmentation". I call it "competition" and "diversity".

The best stuff M$ has is actually stolen from the open source community - TCP/IP, LaTeX math formulas in word, C++, DNS and a lot more. Look at the NetBios crap if you want to judge their capabilities.

Re:Android (3, Informative)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43683977)

The thing that keeps me from being excited about even the idea of this is that there *is* an open Linux-based environment for phones, and it's called Android.

There are many good things about Android, and I enjoy it and would probably not replace it with Ubuntu if it were offered to me. However, more competition is still a good thing.

There are plenty of places Ubuntu could add value.

And this is one of them. One benefit would be having a more standard kernel on your phone, which would permit the use of more software. Today, phones are more powerful than machines I was using as a desktop not very long ago. I would like to run desktop software sometimes.

Whatever they do, reinventing the foundations of Android isn't where the juice is.

They aren't! The foundations are the same, the Linux kernel! And they're doing less reinvention of that than has Android!

Re:Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43693727)

Very soon people will stop carrying a laptop. Instead they will have a phone and a binocular display system in their pocket. That all weighs half a pound. Keyboards will be lying around in office spaces to be attached to random, "nomadic" worker's phone/computer.

Not much to use (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43681851)

So what if it is 'usable' if there is nothing to run on it!

Re:Not much to use (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681995)

there is nothing to run on it

You'd enjoy running several things on it:
1. Water
2. Wild Elephants
3. A Marathon
There's probably other things, but I haven't used it yet.

What does a dog eat for breakfast? (2)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year ago | (#43681897)

So millions of 'not zealots' discovered the hard way how much they hated Unity on the desktop and Canonical missed the most important opportunity (in 10 years) for Linux on the desktop by rolling out an entirely new desktop paradigm at exactly the same time as Windows Hate was being forcefed to consumers. Windows is now backtracking, Canonical is slogging ahead. "We can do it! If we test it enough, we'll get it right!".

Nobody except zealots cares what's running on their phone, they care that it works. So the only people who will bother flashing their phones across to another OS (apart from whatever it came with) are people who tinker with their toys. Some of those tinkerers are tinkering with Android and now (at some un-named time in the future) some of those tinkerers will start to tinker with Ubuntu. And some (unknown) time after that, Ubuntu might actually manage to get a handset onto the market with a stable, working, feature filled operating system on it. And until that time, the Ubuntu developers are playing catch up trying to keep up with the likes of Google (for those not in the know, Google has multitudes of business units and huge influence on the interwebs) and Apple (apparently recently judged only the second richest corporation in the world).

Call me pessimistic, but does it even matter anymore what the Ubuntu developers are doing? Does a Ubuntu mobile phone have any future, and for that matter, does Ubuntu Linux or Canonical?

Re:What does a dog eat for breakfast? (1)

readingaccount (2909349) | about a year ago | (#43682165)

Canonical simply doesn't have the resources or indeed, the attitude to succeed. They haven't had any real successes since they were formed. Sure, Ubuntu is definitely the most popular Linux distro, but they still have yet to return a profit. If it weren't for Shuttleworth's stubborness on funding a white elephant the company would have dissolved years ago.

I'm pessimistic too, but only because it's basically required to remain sane when looking at all the tech companies these days. It's also necessary to be pessimistic when dealing with Linux because of the huge number of failed dreams of success that people have had for Linux, and no-one except the young and ignorant really want to keep dreaming about a Linux dominate future that will never happen.

Re:What does a dog eat for breakfast? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43693751)

Dear M$ $hill, your paymaster Ballmer knows that the Linux kernel rules. Not on these bloated x86 machines, but in virtually all new phones and other efficient, indispensable devices such as DSL modems, servers, automotive brakes, industrial control applications and so on.

People will stop using clunky and hot laptops as soon as they discover a Linux-kernel phone can do their office work, too. For an entire day with a single battery load. They don't need a clunky display but something like Google glass. The Windows days are definitely numbered.

Re:What does a dog eat for breakfast? (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#43683509)

Nobody except zealots cares what's running on their phone, they care that it works.

So, in other words they do care what is running, since you can't separate the "what" from whether it works.

Also, even ignoring that, I think you are completely wrong.

For quite large values of "works" Android, iOS, whatever runs on the blackberry 10 phone and even Windows Phone all work. As in can make calls, texts and connect to the internet and can run a variety of apps to do various things.

The hardware on the high end is pretty much indistinguishable: they're all moderately buttonless slabs with a large, high res touchscreen and a comparable battery life, comparable quality cameras. The price to buy outright does not differ that much either.

So what remains?

People clearly do care since many people prefer iOS to Android and vice versa. Ans almost everyone it seems prefer both of those to Windows Phone.

Re:What does a dog eat for breakfast? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43683957)

Call me pessimistic, but does it even matter anymore what the Ubuntu developers are doing? Does a Ubuntu mobile phone have any future, and for that matter, does Ubuntu Linux or Canonical?

I've read numerous anecdotes here on slashdot about how people put their grandmother (or whatever) on Ubuntu and the user was very happy and able to understand the operating system and navigate. What nerds want does not necessarily matter to anyone else. If Ubuntu would not let you install another DE then you would have a point, but you don't have an argument here because Ubuntu not only makes it possible to install another DE with a single command or a few mouse clicks, but they also offer you installers which install another DE by default.

In short, you are bashing Ubuntu for no good reason whatsoever, and you deserve to be ignored.

Anything like desktop version? (2, Funny)

aws910 (671068) | about a year ago | (#43681925)

If Ubuntu touch is anything like the desktop version of Ubuntu, then I can expect:

* Daily update nags

* Several hours of reconfiguring software after each update

* Changes to the user interface that you didn't ask for

* Loss of previous functionality after each update

Ubuntu was my first Linux, and it was great for a time, but they just play too fast-and-loose with new software. They've unapologetically wasted many hours of my time on many fronts - I still have nightmares from when they switched me to unity without my consent. Seriously, if I wanted OSX, I would just go and buy a mac. I fear for these poor phone users in advance!

Re:Anything like desktop version? (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year ago | (#43682385)

I take it then that you're no longer using Ubuntu, so what are you using instead these days?

Re:Anything like desktop version? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682569)

Linux Mint ;)

Re:Anything like desktop version? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682601)

change motorcycle, " Brailsford reported. "Just because they ended up being acquiring again on immediately after they changed the motorcycle, there was clearly a large die along with they was mandated to wait for a couple BMC Cycling Wear [cyclingwear.net] of moments, that has been a while. " Perhaps stung from the time period they displaced from the slick finale during Serra San Bruno on Tuesday, Wiggins ended up being prominent on the head from the peloton on the concluding world inside Margherita di Savoia, applying the massive first start up leading previous to misfortune in the chief entire body Castelli Cycling Wear [cyclingwear.net] from the group included in the previous three kilometres. The exercise sessions inside muscle-flexing ahead of Saturday's lengthy time period demo?

Free software? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682357)

To what degree will they have to rely on binary blobs and nonfree software? I look forward to the day you can use free software on a handset but given Ubuntu's lax attitude I imagine this will only be a stepping stone.

Re:Free software? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#43683581)

I wonder how much of the requirement for non-free software on the phone is the doing of regulators such as the FCC and radio layer patent holders such as Qualcomm.

Re:Free software? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43693767)

You mean M$ could bribe governments to set up roadblocks against Linux adoption ? Who would have guessed that ??

Communications Act of 1934 (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#43694173)

It's not Microsoft setting up roadblocks. Some of the roadblocks result from traditions that were in place before Bill Gates was born. One of these is the way that devices capable of radio transmission are licensed, dating back to the Communications Act of 1934. Another is voluntary agreements among carriers not to use tech that's 20 years old, and this dates back to the Patent Act of 1790.

Ready-To-Use? Hardly. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43682471)

Imho - and for the vast majority of the general public - implementing day-to-day functionality is the least of Ubuntu Touch's problems.

Some of what they've done is quite 'clever', and in some ways quite pretty, the UX exhibits massive, massive flaws. Mainly, *everything* is hidden behind [unsignposted] gestures, and most of the gestures are overloaded.

When you give the device to a room full of *developers*, and half of them give up in just turning on and unlocking the device, you know you've got serious problems.

Ubuntu is a opensource software,seems to be popula (1)

Micheal He (2919879) | about a year ago | (#43682923)

Ubuntu is a opensource software,seems to be popular with many users,based with linux,will it stable in touch phone. I've no idea will this phone has a market,does people change their iphones to ubuntu? Nowadays,touch phones are made of polycarbonate sheets [china-pc-sheets.com] ,i think that would be safer then other materials.

Unity Next (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year ago | (#43683075)

How is porting Unity to Qt proceeding? Because in its current state Unity is such a horribly slow piece of shit that it won't give a good experience on mobile. Try it on an Atom netbook and experience the pain. On a similar machine, most basic functions of Windows are fluid and just fine.

Data Mining (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43684709)

Will I have more control over data mining than I have on my android "spy phone"?

Yuk! Last time I RTFA (1)

notknown86 (1190215) | about a year ago | (#43687233)

"Wait. Other Linux developers don't eat their own dogfood?" That's right.

Hubris much?

You do realise that a large percentage of open source projects are started with the intention of filling a need that is currently not satisified by other software? (Novel concept, I know!). And therefore, there is an imperative to "dogfood" as soon as possible.

Granted, those open source projects weren't led by an asshole dictator with a commercial imperative. And hey, I've been unfortunate enough to try Unity. Given that precedent for "usability", dog-fooding in this case may well be a painful process

This is ridiculous (1)

Burz (138833) | about a year ago | (#43692581)

I can't even find a SIP phone app in the Ubuntu 13.04 repository that works!

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