Ubuntu Touch Developer Preview Hands-On First Impressions

Canonical has a long way ahead of them, but the new OS shows great promise

By on February 23rd, 2013 11:20 GMT

Ubuntu Touch Developer Preview was launched a couple of days ago and so far, it promises a lot of features, but will it even stack up to its competition?

We have installed Ubuntu Touch Developer Preview on a LG Nexus 4 device (a complete tutorial is provided) and we were impressed with Canonical's solution for flashing and installing the new operating system.

After going through the motions of the installation, the phone finally booted into the Unity interface. The main screen look is great and it feels fresh. Most of the people who are going to install or buy an Ubuntu phone will do it because they feel the need for a change and Canonical has understood this simple concept.

Unfortunately, the idea behind the start screen is just interesting, but not really functional. Ubuntu developers have pointed out that the main screen will be a reflection of your phone usage, displaying messages, tweets, and so on. It would be great if the user were be able to select a particular entry, tweets for example and start the default Twitter application.

In any case, the operating system is fluid overall, if we keep in mind that this is mostly just a mock-up. Sure enough, it provides some limited functionalities like the Gallery, Camera, Wi-Fi connectivity, and a few others, but you won’t be able to use it on a daily basis.

It crashes a lot and sometimes it gets stuck in certain apps, leaving the users hopping that it will eventually reboot (it’s difficult to remove the battery on a Nexus 4 phone).

For a Developer Preview, the operating system seems to be very well put together and if Canonical manages to keep up the development just like it does on the desktops, Ubuntu for Phones will provide some fierce competition to its direct competitor, the Android OS.
Ubuntu Touch Developer Preview working on a LG Nexus 4
   Ubuntu Touch Developer Preview working on a LG Nexus 4
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