updated 06:06 pm EDT, Wed April 30, 2014
Cites need for launch partner to continue Ubuntu for Android development
Canonical is no longer working on Ubuntu for Android, stalled by the lack of a hardware partner. Canonical interface designer Matthew Paul Thomas advised in a now-removed bug report that the project, which would have seen Ubuntu run on a smartphone, is "no longer in development" and the Ubuntu for Android page "should be retired."
The project launched in 2012, promising to give a full Ubuntu Linux desktop with a windowed environment when the smartphone is docked and connected with a HDMI display and USB keyboard. Users would be able to use the Chromium web browser, social networking, the Thunderbird e-mail client, and VLC, among other apps, with the option to run Android apps and access a shared contacts database.
Canonical told Android Authority it thought its smartphone work "show a desire in the market place for Ubuntu, and an Ubuntu for Android solution would be a good way for it to reach users." After describing the development of Ubuntu for Android as "complete," it advised it requires a launch partner "in order to make the necessary modifications on the Android side," though it is currently not in discussions with potential partners.
The company is still working to develop Ubuntu for Phones, an operating system that worked on its own, without using Android. The "for Phones" version is being the main focus of Canonical right now, with the company having already signed deals to have Ubuntu running on devices sometime this year. Canonical has also attempted to kickstart the operating system's adoption, by launching a crowdfunding effort for the Ubuntu Edge, a high-specification smartphone that could also be used for desktop computing. The project failed to reach its $32 million goal within 31 days, raising $12.8 million from over 27,000 backers.