Ubuntu Takes on The Mobile Market

Smartphone and tablet versions of the Ubuntu will be available by 2014 thanks to the development of new versions of the operating system by tech firm Canonical.

In an interview with PC Pro, Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth revealed the plans to extend Ubuntu from the traditional desktop to the modern personal computing platforms - handsets, television and tablet computers.

The company plans to develop a different version of Ubuntu for each different platform, all sharing the same core, devices will be able to switch between these versions, or "personalities".

"We want to enable handsets to behave like desktops when they're in their desktop form factor, to behave like media centres when they're connected to a television," Shuttleworth said.

"Each 'personality' has its own appropriate interface and interaction model," he said. "You can't slap Windows 95 on TV - you can, but you won't be very satisfied with the results - each of these form factors is distinct and different."

Apps will also recognise what type of hardware they're running on and switch to the right type of interface.

"We want you to be able to use Ubuntu through a tablet interface with applications behaving appropriately, and then turn around and say now I've got a keyboard and I want the full power of a desktop," continued Shuttleworth.

"In our ideal world, the same app binary can present a tablet face and a phone face and a desktop face. Those are all going to be different, to more or less degrees."

Canonical also plans to team up with hardware manufacturers to develop Ubuntu tablets and smartphones in order to drive "widespread consumer adoption".

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