Today, July 19th, at O’Reilly OSCON 2012 Mark Shuttleworth revealed a new feature that will be implemented in the upcoming Ubuntu 12.10 (Quantal Quetzal) operating system, called Ubuntu Web Apps.
As you can see from the video below, presented by Canonical, Ubuntu Web Apps allows Ubuntu users to run online apps, such as Twitter, GMail, Ebay, Last.FM or Facebook, straight from their desktops.
This is nothing new to us, and I strongly believe that Canonical doesn't try to reinvent the wheel here. Linux connaisseurs should remember the gOS Linux distro that tried very much to imitate the Google OS concept of web apps, using Mozilla Prism. It died prematurely!
So, making web apps act like desktop ones doesn't really improve the user experience in my opinion.
Having my Unity launcher bar filled with icons who in fact should be my bookmarks, opening them in separate windows will not only slow down my PC, but it will not help me at all in being more productive.
Canonical also said that the web apps would be integrated in the Unity messaging indicator and HUD, but who cares? I would have liked to see more indicators, smart ones, that allow me to quickly see what’s new on email, Twitter, etc.
“That makes Ubuntu the best platform for the web – secure, fast and lightweight. This new feature is part of our drive to make the web a first class part of Ubuntu. We’ve already turned 40 popular web sites into Ubuntu Web Apps and there are plenty more on the way.”
“Ubuntu Web Apps will be available as a preview for Ubuntu 12.04 LTS soon and will be available by default in Ubuntu 12.10. I think we’ve made something that’s about to radically change users’ expectations of the web!” read the blog announcement made by Steve George, VP, Communications and Products at Canonical.