Canonical is conducting a very ambitious Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for Ubuntu Edge smartphone. At the time of writing, the campaign has already raised more than $6 million, with 26 days left to reach the $32million goal. To coninue the momentum of the campaign and keep people talking about it, MarkShuttleworth took the stage on Reddit to interact with the Ubuntu fans, on “Ask-Me-Anything” session.
The opening post from Mark, read “We’ve already received over $5.8 million in funding for Ubuntu Edge in our ambitious Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. We’ve been blown away by the generosity of our community, so wanted to give you all a chance to ask questions about Ubuntu Edge, the Ubuntu phone OS and our convergence story.”
- Are you a blogger? Now you can make money from Muktware....check it out: Muktware's Bloggers Network
The most popular question, if Ubuntu Edge will be Open Hardware. Mark explained that the first version of Edge is more of an experiment and they didn’t look for open hardware, but they may opt for chips with more open drivers. However, if the first version is a success, Canonical will allow current backers to vote for specifications for future edition of Ubuntu Edge, and if possible it may even feature completely open hardware.
Someone was very curious about how the $32 million if raised, will be spent. Ubuntu founder replied “Software is covered by our existing efforts to bring Ubuntu to mobile, nothing more needed there. The crowdfunding is really what it costs to bring a device to market, it would be more if we were a major brand, $32m is pretty lean I’m told. Hope the actual cost doesn’t exceed it or I’ll be carrying that baby but hey it’s worth the risk.”
Mark also informed that Ubuntu edge will be supported with updates to 14.04 LTS and then through approximate 6 years life of 14.04 LTS. However there was no clear conclusion if the phone will receive regular Android updates, and it is assumed that Android is just being used to help users move to Ubuntu gradually.
Someone was generous enough to provide some suggestions to help Mark reach the crowdfunding goal and offered his/her 2 cents, stating that Canonical could offer 1or 2 years of Ubuntu One service as perks for the backers, to boost the campaign. Mark acknowledge this with, “Good ideas, thank you!.”
With NSA and PRISM creating privacy fears among users of connected technology, Mark assured that the Core Ubuntu OS running on Edge will be 100% open and not a “big hacky mush” like Android, with the software being traceable to standard Ubuntu source and binary packages.
Also someone asked if Canonical has been “approached by the NSA/ CIA / FBI regarding access to Ubuntu systems, to which Mark replied that they have not been asked to support any surveillance campaign and they will not comply with “mass surveillance or extra-judicial request”.
Another important question was about the battery life and Mark said that with Ubuntu Edge they are focussing on performance so don’t expect some extraordinary battery life.
These were some of the important questions that Marks addressed to in the Reddit session. If you wish to see the complete discussion, hit the reddit source link.