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Ubuntu for Android demoed on a Nexus 4, shows the need for the Ubuntu Edge

Posted: , by Michael H.


Ubuntu for Android demoed on a Nexus 4, shows the need for the Ubuntu Edge
With all the news about the Ubuntu Edge and Canonical's plans for Ubuntu Touch to be the future of convergent computing, you may have forgotten that Canonical is still working on Ubuntu for Android. Ubuntu for Android is essentially the same idea as Ubuntu Touch, where you get a full Ubuntu desktop environment when you dock a mobile device, but with the difference that the handset runs Android, not Ubuntu Touch.

Canonical engineer Victor Palau is showing off Ubuntu for Android running through a Nexus 4, which is hooked up to an external monitor via a Slimport HDMI cable. As you can see in the video, it does give access to full Ubuntu, complete with workspaces, and the Ubuntu Software Centre. But, as you can also see, the Nexus 4 struggles with the system. Windows stutter when moving, and overall performance is slow. 

This could very well be partially due to the system not being optimized properly for the hardware in a Nexus 4, but part of it could simply be that the Nexus 4 isn't powerful enough. The Ubuntu Edge is planned to have the "fastest available" processor and "at least 4GB of RAM", while the Nexus 4 has a year old Snapdragon S4 Pro and just 2GB of RAM. Now we can see that "convergence hump" that Mark Shuttleworth talked about yesterday.

source: OMG!Ubuntu!

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posted on 26 Jul 2013, 11:36 4

1. jckceric (Posts: 11; Member since: 02 Apr 2013)

I wouldn't say the nexus 4's snapdragon s4 pro is a year old.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 12:01 1

4. bigstrudel (Posts: 518; Member since: 20 Aug 2012)

People knock the S4 Pro but It's practically the same exact processor that's in everyone's HTC One and Galaxy S4.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 12:08 1

6. alltechinside (Posts: 247; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)

Yup. Same pipeline, just different clock speed:http://cpuboss.com/cpus/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-S4-Pro-%28APQ8064%29-vs-Qualcomm-Snapdragon-600

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 15:12

10. Shatter (Posts: 2031; Member since: 29 May 2013)

The snapdragon 600 is a glorified snapdragon s4 pro.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 12:07 3

5. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2686; Member since: 26 May 2011)

8 months to be exact, though the Nexus 4's S4 Pro wasn't the top of the line when it was released either.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 14:03 5

8. bigstrudel (Posts: 518; Member since: 20 Aug 2012)

Really the S4 pro was the best processor on the market at the time. It's only competitor was the 1.6 ghz Exynos Quad in the Note 2 which it mostly equalled in CPU tests but destroyed in all graphics testing.

The Nexus 4 lagged behind other S4 pro devices and only because it couldn't manage heat as well as it should've.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 14:50 1

9. ahhxd717 (Posts: 320; Member since: 08 Dec 2011)

What was the top of the line SoC at the time?

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 12:35 1

7. Dr.Phil (Posts: 921; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)

We have to remember that Ubuntu for Android is still in its beta form. So, there is a lot of optimization that is left to be done. I mean if you look at any videos for Tizen that have been done in the past month you will see that there is still lag, and Tizen is supposed to be released in just a few months. Also, we have to remember that this phone is trying to run a full desktop OS while also being the input for that OS. So, I would say I'm impressed it ran as smoothly as it did considering what I just said.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 11:41 1

2. jove39 (Posts: 1315; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)

Appreciate the idea...but transitions on screen appeared to be very slow...may be some more optimization is required...adreno 320 can handle that much :)

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 11:53 1

3. nlbates66 (Posts: 311; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)

if they plan to put an ARM processor into the edge and not an x86 i'll not consider it interesting.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 15:13

11. Shatter (Posts: 2031; Member since: 29 May 2013)

By best multicore cpu I am pretty sure a majority of us have assumed it will be a top of the shelf intel.

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 19:44

12. Edmund (Posts: 656; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)

how did this become a discussion about processors?? Intel's next generation of microprocessors will do the same thing that nVidia did to ATi - render it insignificant.
Even the Tegra 4 is superior to anything from qualcomm

posted on 26 Jul 2013, 21:35

13. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Edge should have a baytrail quad core processor. Just saying.

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