As recently as last month, it appeared that the Ubuntu
smartphone would be delayed until 2015
, but suddenly Canonical
announced that it has secured manufacturing deals that will being the handset to market yet this year.
Canonical has agreed with Spain’s bq and China’s Meizu to market the Ubuntu smartphone
globally. Everything is already under development, and at some point this year customers will be able to purchase the handset online from bq, Meizu, and Canonical itself.
In terms of carrier support, there are 16 members in the Canonical Carrier Advisory Group, including Deutsche Telekom, KT, SK Telecom, T-Mobile, Verizon, and Vodafone.
“Ubuntu introduces a new UI paradigm for mobile devices,”reads a Canonical post. “Ubuntu puts content and services at the centre of the experience, rather than hiding them behind stores and apps. This gives consumers a fresh and rich way to engage with their favourite videos, music and other mobile activities” while also allowing OEMs to put their own unique stamp on the smartphone they make.
Ubuntu is a longshot to make a significant dent in the Android- and iOS-dominated mobile market, but the company has demonstrated that its mobile OS is an attractive one. We’ll be excited to see what the company and its partners can come up with.