Canonical, the company behind the popular Linux distribution Ubuntu, has just revealed the partners who will be delivering its promise of an Ubuntu-powered smartphone. Manufacturers Meizu from China and bq from Spain will be launching Ubuntu phones, probably in late 2014.
Although Ubuntu has consistently grabbed the spotlight when it comes to Linux on the desktop, its stint on mobile devices has been both glamorous and embarrassing. Its attempt to crowdfund the manufacturing of its own Ubuntu Edge smartphone was met with criticism and, eventually, failure, coming up short of the $32 million goal that it set up. There has also been word recently that Canonical will be pushing back its projected 2014 launch of Ubuntu phones to some time in 2015 instead. Now, however, it seems that things are getting closer to reality.
Canonical has teamed up with Meizu and bq to manufacture and market Ubuntu phones not only in their respective markets but elsewhere in the world. bq might not be a familiar brand to most but it has its fans in Spain and other parts of Europe for offering low cost Android devices. China’s Meizu you might already have heard of, creators of the MX line of smartphones. Meizu intends on expanding its market to the US and other parts of the globe, and Ubuntu phone wants to be part of that.
Canonical has also gathered a good number of carriers around the globe into its Carrier Advisory Group to further ease deployment of its own brand of smartphone. No actual launch date has been given, but Canonical’s press statement imply that it will be coinciding with Meizu’s venture in the US market, which the Chinese manufacturer has scheduled later this year.