Canonical has just announced that the cloud file service Ubuntu One will be shutting down in two months, which is probably a very difficult decision for the company.
The Ubuntu One cloud service from Canonical was launched almost four years ago, but Canonical has decided that it's time to axe this service and focus on other more important aspects of its business.
“This is a tough decision, particularly when our users rely so heavily on the functionality that Ubuntu One provides. However, like any company, we want to focus our efforts on our most important strategic initiatives and ensure we are not spread too thin.”
“Additionally, the free storage wars aren’t a sustainable place for us to be, particularly with other services now regularly offering 25GB-50GB free storage. If we offer a service, we want it to compete on a global scale, and for Ubuntu One to continue to do that would require more investment than we are willing to make,” said Jane Silber, the chief executive officer of Canonical.
The company has informed the users that the Ubuntu One services will no longer be available from June 1, 2014, and users will be able to download their data until July 31, 2014. After that date, everything will be deleted.
Although Ubuntu One was also available as a free service, users could also purchase a premium account. The users that paid for the services of Ubuntu One will get their money back, and the refunded amount will be calculated from today’s announcement.
Also, Canonical will not let all the infrastructure and codebase go to waste. After the shutdown is completed, the source code of the entire project will be made available as open source. Anyone will be able to use it in order to create their own file syncing platform.
If you remember, the Ubuntu One service was also present during the installation of the Ubuntu operating system, but it will be removed from the upcoming Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. The Ubuntu One apps in older versions of Ubuntu and in the Ubuntu, Google, and Apple stores will also be removed.
It's uncertain what will happen with all the other applications that were depending on Ubuntu One, for example Deja Dup, a client which used the file service from Canonical to store the backups. It's very likely that we will see a flurry of updates for all the apps that previously included any facility for Ubuntu One.
We'll keep you apprised if any new information surfaces about Ubuntu One.