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Ubuntu Phone

Introduction to Ubuntu Phone

Ubuntu Phone is particularly an operating system of Ubuntu Touch and its current UBPorts Project maintainer and the Pine64 hardware maker. Two amazing things fortunately unexpected come - the arrival of Fairphone and also Volla which wish to be the next phone of Ubuntu and powered by the Touch. These are amazing for covering in a short summary. Hence, this article is for us who are interested in the phone of Ubuntu once again.

In The Starting

Ubuntu Phone was the idea of Canonical to start within 2011 - similar years when Unity was initially introduced and abandoned unfortunately in 2017. The Convergence was the concept, Ubuntu Touch was the mobile operating system, and the Ubuntu Edge was the hardware.

  • Canonical wishes Ubuntu mobile for working magically on laptops and desktops only by plug and play.
  • They created legendary crowdfunding that was dismissed with 12 million dollars and 20 thousand comments.
  • Ubuntu Touch powered Galaxy phones, Meizu, and BQ Aquaris successfully in the reality.
  • As Ubuntu Company, Canonical Ltd., in the end, discontinued Ubuntu phone in favor of Ubuntu for IoT and Cloud.
  • Apparently, Ubuntu Phone however survives today not in the hand of Canonical but in a small project which is known as UBPorts who is implementing everything for continuing Touch operating system development and engaging with many makers of devices for making Ubuntu Phone real.
  • We can now see the efforts of UBPorts as one-by-one phones arising from FairPhone, Volla, PinePhone, and more.

What is Ubuntu Touch?

Ubuntu Touch is the Ubuntu operating system's mobile version, developed by the community of UBPorts. The user interface of Ubuntu Touch is specified in Qt and it is primarily designed for touchscreen mobile devices like tablet computers and smartphones but the actual aim of convergence was proposed for bringing Ubuntu Touch to TVs, IoT devices, desktops, and laptops for a fully unified user experience.

This project was begun by Canonical Ltd. However, Mark Shuttleworth disclosed on 5 April 2017 that Canonical will terminate support because of insufficient market interest.

Then, it was adopted by UBPorts as the community project. In 2015, the UBPorts project was developed by Marius Gripsgard, and the source code was sent to the UBPorts Foundation in which it resides now. The mission of UBPorts is to support the combined Ubuntu Touch development and to advertise its widespread use.

Features of Ubuntu Touch

Ubuntu Touch applies the touch user interface which is Qt5-based and several software frameworks developed for MeeGo and Maemo like oFono as Maliit for input, accounts-sso for one sign-on, and telephony stack.

Often, the system can be used in Android with Linux kernels using libhybris which makes it convenient to port to the most latest Android smartphones. Libertine is the project of Ubuntu to execute classical applications of the desktop X.

Some important features of Ubuntu Touch are listed and explained below:

Ubuntu Phone

Lock screen

If Ubuntu Touch is on the no lock screen feature appears immediately because applications will ask the user for unlocking if essential when they're opened. The "Welcome Screen" center is an activity visualization on the device. It displays the recent events and the status of the user on the welcome screen, finished with a design across the circle that reflects activity on the preceding month over the phone.

Contained applications

Ubuntu Touch contains core applications like a file manager, an alarm clock, an email client, a calculator, and a terminal among others. Currently, twelve or more core applications are being developed. Various applications of Ubuntu Touch also work on the desktop including Weather, Terminal, Reminders, Notes, Gallery, Clocks, Calendar, and Browser.

Side stage

In 2013, the side stage was released and permits users to side-by-side run both "phone apps" and "tablet apps", resizing all on the top and if we require to see more of them. It focuses on "go even further" along with the concept of multitasking, permitting screen space to be categorized in this manner.

Why did Ubuntu Phone Fail?

Mark Shuttleworth of Canonical, in April 2017, disclosed that their Ubuntu Phone convergence support was no longer anything they're going to invest in. Seeing other projects that were unsuccessful to garner required traction like Firefox OS, WebOS, among others, it is understandable why Canonical determined to re-concentrate their attempts into other areas.

The problem is that Canonical tried to resolve an issue that does not exist. Canonical can provide improved security over the latest IoT devices.

Reasons for Switching to Ubuntu Phone

It is an Ubuntu phone which means it is based on Linux. We do not require any Ubuntu PC for syncing data using the phone. But that is not the only reason why we should prefer switching to an Ubuntu Phone. There are some other reasons which are listed and explained below:

Ubuntu Phone

1. Mobile security through malware

Linux operating system is secure if compared to Windows and by creating Ubuntu Touch under the basic Ubuntu OS, this security is converted into mobile space.

The insufficient applications mean that there is a limited attack vector for the developers of malware hoping to capture our data by an App Store and as we keep our phone close (in an internal pocket) while about and out, it is unlikely to expose any secrets.

Note: We should be attentive that Ubuntu Phone doesn't yet provide any encryption as a new platform. It seems that it will be included in the future.

2. Scopes carry search convenience

Microsoft attempted to cancel out insufficient applications by incorporating their aspects into the environment when back Windows Phone was released. It is a ploy that Canonical has reproduced for Ubuntu Phone, associating photographic services, email, and social networking with an interface of Google Now-style.

3. Office in our pocket

The mode of Convergence is a built-in aspect that means we can turn our Ubuntu Phone into the Ubuntu PC with the connection of a monitor, mouse, and keyboard. Literally, it is an office in our pocket.

4. Impressive performance

Whether we are using iOS or Android things seem to have from time to time. The hardware is reliable and the user interface is sleek.

5. Almost all devices run android

Being able for installing any operating system on the Ubuntu Phone makes it a useful device to mobile hackers and developers which can, in turn, increase the relevance and lifespan of the device.

Ubuntu Touch and Other Devices

Ubuntu Phone

Ubuntu Touch and UBPorts

The UBPorts Foundation along with the UBPorts Project continues the open collective Ubuntu Touch mobile OS development and its Lomiri (formerly known as Unity8) user interface. One of the interesting things made by UBPorts is the convenient operating system installation process in which we just install any software in the system then link a supported phone device and press to install Ubuntu Touch in the device - very distinct experiences we may have with the custom roms flashing of Android. They are active at Pixelfed (photos) and Mastodon (news).

Ubuntu Touch, PineTab, PinePhone, and PINE64

PINE64 is an assuring computer manufacturer which concentrates on ARM instead of PC architecture and they create PineBooks the laptops, PineTab the tablets, and the PinePhone the phones with support for Linux/GNU OSes officially. The good part is that they sell many editions of PinePhone Ubuntu Touch. Another good part is that their products are inexpensive interestingly.

Ubuntu Touch and Volla Phone

Volla is a German startup that creates secure phones by crowdfunding and already they ship Volla phones along with Ubuntu Touch and Volla operating system in collaboration with UBPorts. We can pre-order anyone at Indiegogo and choose Ubuntu Touch as an operating system selection.

Ubuntu Touch and FairPhone

FairPhone is a company of phone maker which concentrates on life environments and their hardware is free software friendly. The second edition is a device promoted by UBPorts officially. However, FairPhone doesn't officially ship with Ubuntu Touch, unlike PINE64 which means we should manually install it after purchasing.

Ubuntu Touch and OnePlus

OnePlus is a company of Chinese phone makers whose hardware can manage free software OSes. According to UBPorts, Ubuntu Touch can execute the great on the OnePlus One and it's currently first rank device.

Ubuntu Touch, Librem Phone, and Purism

It's interesting to see that Purism, the maker of PureOS and Librem, is also interested in generating Ubuntu Phone that in 2018 they disclosed a partnership with UBPorts. Now, it seems in 2020 that either the partnership got canceled or the products aren't available anymore. However, the concept is familiar because Purism Librem came to us as well by crowdfunding and the design of the phone is adorable.

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