Canonical tried stepping into the smartphone market with the Ubuntu Edge. The crowdfunded smartphone couldn’t raise enough money, so it never saw the light of day. The company has been focusing its strengths on bringing Ubuntu to mobile phones. It has partnered up with several OEMs who have committed to developing phones that run on Ubuntu. At the CeBIT trade show in Hanover, Germany, Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth has revealed that Ubuntu smartphones price will range “between $200 and $400.”
Meizu and BenQ are the first hardware partners. Price would be a key aspect if they are serious about wanting to compete in the smartphone market. The mid-range segment is heavily dominated by Android and it would make sense going after those consumers. Canonical has also hinted in the past that it is in talks with several big OEMs that are “household names.” But no additional partners have been announced up till now.
The idea behind Ubuntu smartphones is to make them work as PCs when hooked up to a display. That’s the ultimate aim, and Shuttleworth said that the idea has peaked interest of many audiences. Only when the first crop of Ubuntu phones is out will we really know where the platform stands. Canonical has said that it expects phones to be released by Fall 2014.