Verizon backs Ubuntu smartphone

Verizon Wireless joins the Ubuntu Carrier Advisory Group. This move sets Verizon up to be the first carrier to bring the Ubuntu-Linux based smartphone to the US.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

Canonical has had good luck getting European telecomms to back Ubuntu on smartphones. But until July 11th, it hadn't managed to persuade any US carriers to back its Linux phone. Now, Verizon Wireless has joined the Ubuntu Carrier Advisory Group.

Verizon will be bringing the Ubuntu smartphone to the US market.

According to Sian Aherne, Canonical's public relations manager, "Verizon Wireless is the latest member to join the Ubuntu Carrier Advisory Group (CAG). Verizon is the largest mobile network operator in the US and being able to work closely with them gives us an opportunity to shape Ubuntu into the most compelling new, alternative platform for mobile."

Canonical's Ubuntu smartphone OS, in pictures

In a statement Samir Vaidya from the Device Technology team at Verizon Wireless said: “Verizon Wireless is joining Ubuntu’s CAG to participate in technology discussions around this new platform, which has the ability to bring new and exciting features to developers and ultimately, customers.”

The purpose of CAG, as Ubuntu community manager Jono Bacon explained in June, is to "to prioritize the delivery of new Ubuntu features, and grow an ecosystem of software, services and devices.

Specifically CAG members will be able to launch Ubuntu smartphones and tablets before non-members and they can help Canonical work out the following items prior to the Ubuntu phone launch:

  • Differentiation for OEMs and operators.
  • Developer ecosystems and application portability.
  • HTML5 standards, performance and compatibility.
  • Marketplaces for apps, content and services.
  • Revenue share models for publishers, operators, and OEMs.
  • Payment mechanisms and standards.
  • Platform fragmentation.
  • Consumer and enterprise market segments and positioning.

Ubuntu has been working hard on its  smartphone and tablet Linux for the last few months. Canonical's plan is to have the first Ubuntu smartphones available in at least two global markets by October and in the rest of the world in 2014.

Related Stories:

Editorial standards