So, you’ve upgraded to the LG Nexus 4 and you have an old Samsung Galaxy Nexus kicking around that you no longer have a use for. You could sell it — the device still does well on eBay, despite being more than a year old — or you could hold onto it until late February when you’ll be able to get your first taste of Canonical’s brand new Ubuntu platform for smartphones.
Announced at CES 2013 in Las Vegas this week, Ubuntu for smartphones is coming to do battle with Android and iOS, and its first image will be for the Galaxy Nexus.
Many would argue that Ubuntu is far too late to be launching a new mobile platform; Android and iOS are way ahead of everything else, and competing with those is a mammoth task — as Microsoft is learning with Windows Phone. But Ubuntu looks good, and it has some tricks up its sleeve that could help it succeed.
If you’d like to judge for yourself, you can do so in “late February,” but you’ll need a Galaxy Nexus. Canonical has confirmed that’s when the first Ubuntu image will be released for Samsung’s device. The company hasn’t given any more specifics, but we’re assuming it’ll support the unlocked HSPA+ version of the device.
Having said that, the source code will also be released for developers to play with, so later on it may also support other Galaxy Nexus variants, and even other Android handsets.
Don’t expect to be using Ubuntu as your primary smartphone platform come February, however. It’s still some time away from final release, and the first image will be unfinished. That means it’s likely to be unstable and unreliable, while app support will be almost nonexistent.