Video: Canonical gives us more details about Ubuntu for Android


Ubuntu for Android has caused quite the stir, since it was released a few days ago. The idea of carrying your computer in your pocket is simply astounding. We have seen it in action already, but only briefly. And our friends from Engadget have taken it upon themselves to get more details straight from Canonical.

Engadget has managed to get over 13 minutes of video time with one of Canonical’s engineers. The video offers a detailed look at the software, and responds to some important questions.

Overall, the idea seems great, and the software looks very promising. But it also looks like this project will need more work, as it looks a bit sluggish. It is mentioned that manufacturers will be able to make it much better, though, by tweaking the software to work specifically with its devices.

It is also important to note that this has not been tested in anything stronger than a Motorola Atrix. It would be great to see how well it works with a Tegra 3 processor.

And if you were wondering, the software is still meant for being dealt with by manufacturers. The interviewed engineer mentions that he feels like an independent developer would not be able to accomplish the same level of performance that a manufacturer would. But we have seen our community of developers work, so who knows.

Check out the video to see what Ubuntu for Android is all about. Are you guys looking forward to seeing this in your future devices?

Edgar Cervantes

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  1. Engadget sucks.

    1. Anything that’s not TWiT sucks. But at least Engadget is a million times better than Gizmodo.

      1. I hate them both incredibly.

        1. Clearly

  2. Why is a second OS needed? Have the android desktop detect and scale out to the the size of the monitor and take advantage of the keyboard/mouse input devices. That just requires presumably fairly minor changes to android and is a heck of a lot simpler than a second, different OS.

    1. There are a lot of desktop applications for Ubuntu…..and it’s pretty cool…..i use only ubuntu….

  3. @CaffinatedOne:disqus  The second OS, Ubuntu, is a LOT more functional as a desktop than Android is.It is designed as a desktop os and will be a lot more fully featured for desktop users. If I am going to convince you, I will need you to go to ubuntu’s web sire, download an ISO, and try it out on your computer. I recommend installing to a flash drive and booting from there instead of a CD. Having a real full office suite like LibreOffice, being able to run apps in separate windows instead of screens, even having heavy weight editors like Audacity available make me very excited for this convergence. Just think of it this way: Ubuntu is to operating systems as Firefox is to Web Browsers. It’s free, it is fast, and it is functional. The fact that it is running as well as it does on an Atrix just shows how well it could run on an ICS quad core handset. I am particularly interested in what Moto’s next flagship phone will bring. Give me one of the new and poweful Qualcomm or TI chips or a Tegra 3 and this thing would fly. For reference, Ubuntu runs pretty snappy on this laptop I’m typing on. It has 1GB ram, and 1.6Ghz single core processor without hyperthreading.

    1. you are perfectly right….i think i will buy a device with ubuntu for android. And i think this is the first step to bring Android on Ubuntu too. Next years will be very exciting for Linux users.

    2.  I’m familiar with Linux desktops, I run fedora 16 as my main laptop OS (though have nothing against Ubuntu), but I was trying to figure out why a live image of a second OS would be all that useful in this case.

      The hardware’s the same, so presumably libreoffice could work just as well under android as ubuntu should effort go into making sure that the android port is sane. In terms of the UI experience, Ubuntu is going to be different than windows, so there’d be a learning curve there for new users, who’d also have to learn android. I’m not saying that it’s not cool, nor that I’d not consider playing with it, I’m just not sold that outside of a small group that there’d be a real use case here.

      I just got my wife onto her first smartphone a couple of weeks back, and she’s still trying to figure it out; I can’t imagine the “if you plug it into a monitor, you get a whole new (different) desktop” discussion; it’d baffle her.

      1. While in theory apps could all be ported to android its a huge thing that just will not get done in a timely manner. Software like libre office was designed for desk top interfaces (windows forms/gtk+ etc) with Ubuntu we get gnome and all the open source that goes along with it.

        This has real world use, me for example, I can take eclipse with me and code where ever I go… and yes it happens a lot I wish I could code while out of my office. I can see similar examples for anyone who writes a lot. Google docs is great but its offline mode is lacking… libre or open office are both better for certain things.

  4. Canonical has posted a video not long after the announcement: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pZUCKt0RKc&feature=player_embedded

  5. It’s an Atrix 2, not an Atrix.

  6. “We’re working with handset manufacturers that are gonna go thu all hardware optimization and all the relivant developement and quality assurancetesting thats gonna make it you know absolutely run perfectly and I dont think you can expect you know a home user to achieve the same level of result”………
    Seriously? Sadly, Cyanogen Mod aswell as members over at XDA and others places continuously release BETTER roms campared to the manufacturer oem roms………

    This nonesence coming from a guy from Canonical? He does realize much of linux is what it is because of that vast community of home users right o_O?……

    I don’t really have anything against Ubuntu, but I every new distro release I give a go, sure enough I always wind up back on Fedora. I used to install Ubuntu onto peoples computers who were getting fed up with Windows and it’s issues. Majority of the time thye love it and it’s simplicity. Ubuntu was a great steping stone for getting people to give Linux a try. Fedora has always had a bit more of a learning curve for many. Since Canonical dropped Gnome in favor of Unity tho I now instal Fedora for everyone. Yeah yeah, I know. I can always change the desktop environment to Gnome, KDE, XFCE etc. It’s easier for me anyways if they ever need any assistance Fedora being what I personally use at home and at work. That and the learning curve isn’t nearly as bad as it used to be. Gawd, RPM dependencies used to drive me up the wall at times… lol. Ubuntu is still the more straightfoward and simplier to use for the average consumer tho in all honestly.

    I really wish Canonical would do away with the unity gui tho. I realy hate it as the default ubuntu desktop interface. Wasn’t realy a huge fan of Gnome 3 either, but it has grown on me over time. (Then again, cancer can do that to right o_O? lol ) Unity on the other hand. I just cant stand it personally.

    1. Depends on the phone.  Neither of my phones have CM ports.  At least not working ports, there are a ton of half assed “It works as long as you don’t need to make a phone call” ports.

  7. I would love something like this. I was considering the Motorola media hub the other day, but this may change my mind for the future.

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