Open Ballot: The rumour mill (Win free Linux stuff!)

We've received a rather cryptic e-mail from Canonical's PR company:

"Canonical is kicking off the New Year with a bang, and launching a brand new Ubuntu product. We’ll be holding an exclusive event hosted by Mark Shuttleworth, founder of the Ubuntu project, to give full details of what we believe is the next generation of cross platform operating system."

Usually press releases get redirected to /dev/null, but a guy dropping off a brown envelope full of non-sequential £20 notes little bird told us that this is going to be interesting. However, we don't know any more than this.

So, dear podcast listeners, what do you think:

Have we been duped into over-hyping the release of Ubuntu 13.04?
Is this going to be the tablet that Unity's been crying out for?
Some form of cloudy-virtualised-desktop thingy?
Has the Ubuntu Phone finally got a hardware partner?
Are they joining forces with Apple to release iBuntu?
Something else?

Let us know your thoughts before we head off to the pub Thursday lunchtime (GMT) to drink away our sorrows record the podcast. When we find out what's going on (Jan 2nd), we'll send out glittering prizes (books and pin-badges) to everyone who guessed correctly.

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Your comments

they are doing a console!

they are combining ubuntu tv and the steam stuff to do a console. it will use wii mote and keyboard and those classical gaming contollers. with two web cams you will able to play controlless as well. minority report style.

I think they're planning TO

I think they're planning TO TAKE OVER THE WORLD!

cross platform OS?

i think it means it will be used across platforms in your nearst train station

Android apps in ubuntu

rather than having ubuntu run on android they are having android running on ubuntu!

Phone, All about the phone

Finally about to put the OS on a phone. although i liked someone else's post about running android apps on Ubuntu..

Cross platform

They have ported Unity to Windows!

Ubuntu "Product"

Its got to be some form of hardware with a promise of a Ubunto Product, as opposed to distro.

My guess is its going to be some sort of Linuxy tablet/phablet.


Could it be the final product release of Ubuntu TV, that they've been talking about for a while?

Cash money

I think it's going to be a tablet. Seems to me like the most logical thing for Canonical to do, after all, it's all about the benjamin in 2012.

YOU are the product

Cynical prediction:
Canonical realizes that their best asset is their user base, and they've found more ways to mine them for sale to predictive analytics marketers.

Let's hope that they've learned from their Amazon mistakes though. Also, let's hope that they aren't announcing another "product" that is in reality a great concept that hasn't been developed yet.

They do say right in the release that the product is a cross-platform OS though, so maybe they'll be announcing wider compatibility with more families of ARM SOCs. That would be cool.

Ubuntu 4 Android

I think (and hope) they will officially launch Ubuntu4Android.

I would be glad to buy some high-end phone, when I can also run Ubuntu on it :)

Phone Stuff

see title :)

Cross Platform

With the mention if cross platform it has to be another format. I would assume that means one of the Ubuntu TV, phone or tablet platforms. Tablet would likely be the easiest to be ready with as new, but a lot of work has gone into the phone version so that could be closest to ready. Not so convinced about the TV.

Option (d)

I bet you got it right with option (d): the Ubuntu Phone has finally found a hardware partner. And an exclusive deal with Currys.

Either that or a deal with Humax, so there's a new front end to Freesat boxes. Again, only available at Currys...

Ubuntu TV

They will probably announce partners and hardware plans for the Ubuntu TV device which will be a STB with streaming services (my guess is no Netflix, Hulu+, or Amazon).


Linking Android with Server and Desktop

Canonical can already put its system up on Android, its just a matter of linking its Android, Server, Desktop AND Touch-sensitive Pad surfaces to make the whole system a cohesive whole.


It's probably going to be something like the announcement of the first "stable" release of Ubuntu for the Nexus 7. I would think it would be easier to make a port for a tablet then it would be a phone, but I don't have that much experience in either.

As for Ubuntu TV, look at the Google TV and the Apple TV. Both of them are considered hobbyist devices. Although you could argue Linux is for hobbyist, Canonical seems to be looking for a product that is really going to take off and make money. So far, no set top box has really taken off.

Yes! No!

One thing I'm sure will happen in 2013...Ben will be patched into the Linux kernel.

Happy Christmas everyone!

I no longer care what canonical are up to.

I think that they will release a range of products from smart phones to supercomputers that are exclusive to Comet. I would love a pin badge but not a brown one.

Hammers on!

Richard Stallman's head in a box. He is the only thing standing between them and global domination.


Yes! you have all been duped by my evil plan! mwahahahaha! *wanders off giggling insanely*

launching a brand new Ubuntu product

All I can say is it better be good.

ubuntu rover

They're launching an ubuntu powered rover into space ...

Tablet Ubuntu!

A new redesigned unity experience for phones, tablets and laptops! A more metro kind of experience! Ubuntu RT maybe?

#3 or 4

Steambox! (maybe)

It's not going to impress us as much as the hype

I think that no matter how bad or good it sounds, whatever they release won't live up to the generated hype.

It might simply be a slightly better model of Dell laptop with Ubuntu on it.

Or maybe someone's managed to shoehorn a full Ubuntu desktop onto a Raspberry Pi.


Hopefully some great kit with Ubuntu Linux on it.

Hopefully a decent Tablet.

Vapourware R Us

Nothing unexpected, merely the ubuntu tablet in 14.04 that canconical have been been spruiking for some time now

Here me go...

"Next generation of cross platform operating system" sounds depressingly like yet another half-baked cloud 'solution' to me, BUT as it's a week before Christmas I'll make a supreme effort of non-cynicism and consider that it might actually be something interesting.

So: Presumably the "cross-platform" refers to hardware platforms, so it'll run comfortably on 'phones, tablets and screen-and-keyboard systems. Hopefully it also refers to multiple processor architectures, in which case they'll find it easiest to stick with the Linux kernel. "Brand new" and "next generation" imply that it isn't yet another version of Ubuntu or Android.

So it's some other Linux-based OS. I see two possibilites:
(1) Ubuntu's answer to Chrome OS - basically a glorified browser, using HTML5 for all the applications;
(2) A new alternative to Android and traditional Linux distributions, possibly taking ideas and/or code from Meego and friends.

(1) would fit well with Ubuntu's business model, and being cloud-dependant would give them ample opportunities to make money from it. However, I'll go with (2) as it would be much more interesting.

I predict Ubuntu will announce an OS similar to some of the best smartphone OSes, but with slightly different ancestry. It'll be capable of running Android apps but with a more Ubuntish flavour, and with a bit more thought given to larger devices.

An Ubuntu Laptop in the UK

Manufacturers of laptops grow some big ones and finally release their ranges of Ubuntu Laptops in the UK.

Ubuntu to start putting pop-up stores into Shopping Centers and stores like John Lewis, and Currys start stocking Ubuntu machines, in Ubuntu-branded displays.

A tablet of some sort

I reckon either the Ubuntu version for tablets will have a stable release or they will be releasing an Ubuntu branded tablet.

ere we go ere we go ere we go... down.

Sponsorship for Reading FC in the form of the tastefully designed Ubufridge (painted in blue and white hoops) available through the ubuntu software centre.


It's a trap!

It's a plan to get rid you guys for criticising Ubuntu/Canonical.

"kicking off the New Year with a bang"?

That says it all....


With the way things are going I'm going to assume we're now going to have to sign in with an Amazon account and buy access to our file systems.

Joking aside this brings Public Enemies "Don't Believe the Hype" to my ears.

Extented the Mayan calendar

so we'll be in the the New Year.


Its likely to be a new and shiny version of Unity with a phone or tablet deal and possibly android app compatibility.
What would be awesome is if it was a deal with a company like HP for pre-installed laptops on a much bigger scale than before.

Affordable Ubuntu laptops !

No doubt, in 2013 we'll be able to purchase $500 Ubuntu laptops. Instead of $1500 for the Ubuntu Dell XPS13. Which you better buy with Windows; because it's cheaper.

So surely, they'll announce Sputnik was just a joke.

I'm sure !

you never know...

Hopefully they've come to their senses and are abandoning Unity in favour of Cinnamon.

Keeping an Open Mind but...

...if it uses Unity, I won't waste my bandwidth.

I still miss the days when Ubuntu was the number 1 on distrowatch.

Ubuntu MATE would be nice!

Dash on the right

The "next generation of cross platform operating system" . . . Hmmm, Linux with Unity but with the dash on the right.

(The message just mentions an "operating system" which, obviously, does not necessarily entail any accompanying hardware, though that does not mean there wouldn't in fact be a tablet or phone shaped piece of hardware to go with it.)

Dash of Retro, Please

Unity - One size fits all - Jack of all trades... POS.

Sure, Ubuntu, feel free to develop a crippled OS for the phone, greasy piece of glass, TV, fridge or wife, but have some self respect and don't inflict it upon the poor, long suffering desktop!

Canonical is buying out TI's OMAP foundry?

I wish I had an inside track as an "Ubuntu Member" but I do not. I have advocated that Canonical buy out TI's OMAP line that TI were getting away from and follow in Apple's steps by releasing their own ARM boxes for desktop use. Heck, I run Xubuntu 12.04.1 on my BeagleBoard-xM and it works well for a non-gamer like me.

I'm doubtful about it being Nexus 7 related. Now, distribution of installation media through some major retail chains would be a bit of a bang I suppose. We'll see.

Its the "Mega Ubuntu" that runs on all TV, PC, Phone & Tablet

It's the mashed-up Ubuntu that runs on the TV, PC, Phone & Tablet, all in sync and talk to each other .. so something like, control your ubuntu TV using your ubuntu Phone/Tablet from your couch kind of thing, or

play Steam games on your ubuntu TV using your ubuntu Tablet as the ultimate controller, or

seamlessly look at the pictures you took with the camera in your ubuntu phone, directly on your ubuntu tv, or edit them in ubuntu PC/Laptop

They will sell the "hub", some physical device that looks like a router to which all the other ubuntu sub-systems are connected.. At the same time this device becomes something like a home server or something

just reflect:
Unity <-- is for --> the tablet / phone
Dash <-- is for --> the PC / Laptop
Steam <-- is for --> The TV / PC / Laptop
Ubuntu Software Center <-- is for --> all of the above

It all converges to one 'thing' ... this has got to be it... The "Ubuntu User" does not use 5 separate devices that runs separate instances of Ubuntu "Operating System", but rather one "single stretchy thing" that follows the user wherever he goes and captures all his "digital" activities ... ( watching movies, playing games, text messaging, voice conversations, emailing, calendaring, photo-taking, daily computing, shopping, everything )

"It" is behind them all, "It" is the base on top of which all of those run.

how to name this thing? an "OS - Operating System" ? mmm that's so last century... how about a "DS - Digital Shadow" ?

it's the 'one righ to rule them all' ...

just look at their logo man, isn't that a "RING" already?

thus in 2013, thou shalt all be bound... in darkness.... err no, in purple...! :p

And I hope that's a good thing, I really do! Especially if this helps Ubuntu get a hardware partner (man let them have partnerS and not just a partner) and so devices ship with Linux by default and can do a head-on charge at Microsoft's secure boot crap.. if this happens, kudos to Canonical

otherwise, we need Gandalf! :p

another thought...

Maybe they're abandoning the desktop and have new PCs boot to a command line!

Ubuntu darts

i guess the plage of ubuntu as taken over here @tuxradar. :p

i been throwing darts at an image of the ubuntu community manager, the(comdom head)looking guy?.

been very entertaining.

Ubuntu dart board comming to you soon. by the community. :D

A New Specialty Linux Distro

Because of the smashing success of the incorporated Amazon search, and following the lead of specialty distributions such as AVLinux, Canonical will be converting their distro to a specialty Linux also. It will be called ¥€$Linux and specialize in on-line shopping. The search feature will no longer return results from the local machine (as those will no longer matter), but will instead return search results from Microsoft commercial partners who will provide ¥€$Linux with a wealth of trialware which will be installed as part of the distro, as it is with Windows. In addition, Canonical will receive a really sweet deal on a Microsoft-signed UEFI key.

Merry Christmas to all at LXF!

Tablet OS with Digitizer support.

So developers can finally get started on OneNote clones.

My guess is a mobile/tablet OS

... and if it turns out they've got some Ubuntu-brand hardware running said OS, that still counts right?


Free as in free beer.

Ideally beer.

Breaking more stuff

Dunno what it'll be but I imagine it'll be some ugly piece of unusable rubbish. But, like Tony Blair, Mark Shuttleworth knows what we need better than we do right?

I thought Linux Format was owned by Canonical anyway given the -buntu bias? Don't you have insider knowledge?

New from Mr Shuttleworth?


Well maybe not, but something that makes Win8RT seem crippled on ARM.

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