First Ubuntu Smartphone Arriving in Europe Next Week

February 8, 2015by admin

The first smartphone to be powered by the open source Ubuntu operating system will arrive at retail in Europe beginning on Monday, Feb. 9. The Aquaris E4.5 will be offered to early adopters via a series of "flash sales" across the continent.

The unlocked phone will retail for 169.90 euros, or roughly US$195, without the need for a contract. This unique launch strategy was conceived as a way for the developers. To gauge demand and respond to early feedback before offering the phone to a wider audience.

The phone's Linux-based operating system was developed by UK-based Canonical. While the handsets were developed and produced by BQ, a technology firm based in Spain that already has produced an Android variant of the hardware.

This is the second attempt to bring the handset to market. Previously, an online crowdfunding campaign failed to generate enough interest and fell short of the campaign goals.

Although that prior effort was unsuccessful the developers of the operating system believe there is an untapped market for an affordable handset.

The launch of the first Ubuntu smartphones is a significant milestone," said Jane Silber, CEO of Canonical. The new experience we deliver for users, as well as the opportunities. The differentiation for manufacturers and operators, are a compelling and much-needed change from what is available today.