Support for what people actually want

  • Hello,

    I've been interested in this subject (Linux mobile other than android) for many years now and I would really like to show my support for the community take-over of Ubuntu Mobile. I was still concerned with Ubuntu's business practices which caused me not to invest in Ubuntu Mobile. Now that it is split off, I have some renewed interest.

    Thank you for all of the hard work!

    As far feedback, I am amazed in the lack of Samsung device support. Is it because of closed source drivers? What is the deal here? ... To much Europe. While I love all you "descendants of my ancestors" and I'm sure you are all very nice, it appears that devices supported are very Euro focused. I actually don't know where to start because I can't get a device from a retailer in Canada that you support (except Nexus but still couldn't find any). Why is there so much effort in developing for devices that make up only single digits of the Android market?

    • Android APK, Google Play and Amazon Store should be a priority for wider acceptance.
    • Test and develop on Samsung devices. While Fairphone 2 is an excellent product, it does not represent your (end goal) customer. It represents tech hipsters (not to offend anyone) and sold tens of thousands of devices to Samsung's hundreds of millions.

    Thank you for reading and I hope this kicks off in a big way. I also hope I can help once more mainstream devices cough Samsung cough are supported beyond the European marketplace.

    Have a great weekend everyone!

  • @Mr.e. Hello, and thanks for the feedback!

    Well I tried porting to Samsung and then it looks like this: xD => Samsung is very difficult to deal with, especially since they do not use standard Android tools for flashing and so on.

    There will be Samsung ports one day, I am sure. Currently we need to stick to devices that are easy to flash and to work with. Can you get hold of one of the Nexus devices?

    You might want to ask this question in tomorrows Q&A if you like, see and put your question maybe in a summary there...

    What I can tell from my perspective, Android APK will if ever happen only with the Anbox project => but it needs lot more time & resources.

    Our end goal are not customers, because we certainly cannot bring this project on a commercial level. Let alone that end customers are overwhlemed with flashing their devices, and handling all that Linux stuff. We target people that are interested in alternative ways of using their phones, maybe only for a month, maybe forever. But, to be clear here, dont expect commercial grade quality from this project...

    Lets talk about this tomorrow in Q&A, ping me on the stream plz ๐Ÿ™‚

    BR Florian

  • Thanks for the reply ๐Ÿ™‚

    I just hope that if the mainstream (apk, popular devices) is supported that this project will end up taking on a life of it's own from grass-roots. You may even double your test/user base with Samsung alone.

    I will ask my contact at Samsung if she can send a note to someone over at their OS group to pay a visit to this web site. No promises, but it won't hurt to ask. Samsung is known to contribute massively to open source projects of they think it will keep their company on the cutting edge. Maybe they will at least talk about it in a morning scrum meeting. ๐Ÿ˜›

  • @Mr.e. You are welcome!

    We need any support we can get. I started porting on Samsung SIII but failed, thought it would be a good one to start for Samsungs. If you can get me someone to help => it seems to work partially already, but no GUI...

    From SIII to others it is maybe not that hard...xD


  • I was able to get the direct email addresses for the heads of departments of electronics R&D and Research for Samsung in Canada.

    Contact me at, Adrian Thompson, and if I can help build a case for you to get help from Samsung, I will do what I can.

  • Administrators

    Hey ๐Ÿ™‚

    Yeah, new devices are definitely on the todo list, but it's not our main focus at the moment. Samsung devices (especially the newer shiny ones) are definitely on the whishlist for the future, though.

    Silightly offtopic; opinion warning:

    Android APK, Google Play and Amazon Store should be a priority for wider acceptance.

    UBports Ubuntu Touch should (in my opinion) not try to become yet another android rom. That's the path to insignificance. You need to be different in order to make a difference. While i'm all for developing deep integration of F-Droid and .apk files (while still pushing for native apps), i'm strongly opposed to integrating proprietary services like Amazon and Google (despite the legal constraints that come with shipping it). If a user decides to install them himself, he should of course be allowed to do that, but we should not encourage that. Using Ubuntu Touch without proprietary apps needs to be a pleasant experience!

    While Fairphone 2 is an excellent product, it does not represent your (end goal) customer. It represents tech hipsters (not to offend anyone) and sold tens of thousands of devices to Samsung's hundreds of millions.

    Wrong. Our market are people who are open to an ideology. Our main selling point is being open source, so Fairphone is a natural market. But yes, of course there need to be new devices, i'm with you on that!

  • It appears that I may have reached a wall with Samsung. All of their Android development is strictly from Korea and not in English. I am still going to forward a message I received from @Flohack via email and see if it lands in the right spot.

    "That's the path to insignificance. You need to be different in order to make a difference."

    I still think that a lot of people's expectations will be crushed if certain "obvious" features are missing. These features do not need to be any different than any other platform. As a matter of fact, if they did act differently, people will be more likely to reject them. Generally these features are things that will leave a bad taste in someone's mouth if they are not there and the 'same' as they are used to. Allowing APK and supporting APK will gloss over 99% of missing features or unrealized open source apps.

    I love open source. However, a closed source APK store may help the platform see use beyond hobbyists and push the project forward until more open source apps are created for ubports.

  • @Mr.e. said in Support for what people actually want:


    I also follow rather @NeoTheThird arguments, why? Because 99% of APK coverage would mean we need to allow GApps installed, then they need full access to our hardware, and in the end you got an Android phone with a breakout to Ubuntu - but in fact it will be more Android than Linux.

    Our current userbase is really telling us in many posts that they want to leave Android behind, and they know they will loose a lot of Apps. Call it new simplicity, but most of the Apps are just stealing your time anyway ๐Ÿ™‚


  • @Flohack I agree, but there are some apps we will never get outside ios or android, like municipal and public services apps, since they don't release the apis and such to code them. For these cases something like andbox is really needed...

  • @Flohack
    yea strongly agree here. if ubports touch os would become another android , it would be very unhappy and my heart would bleeding.
    We have here so a big chance and oportunity here to create a human readable usable operating- system from people for people. Not important how much or less money you have. you can be a poor one from nigeria or a rich guy from shanghai. there are no paywalls in it. If we loose the linux- spirit in this os would become another expensive properitary software for a few rich people only. and all other people in poorer townships ( second and third world) must have a the possibility to work on it without properitary paywall. thats the thing on gnu linux... :0| ...ok if we are realistic.....little bit android if neccessary but not more, or a free choice to disable the properitary stuff if the user want to. human readable, freedom of choice a little bit android, big hug to gnu hurd and more coding and if success...we find a name for the os...but first let work on it ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I personally feel that if this project went down the โ€œandroid routeโ€ that would be a very bad thing, as the reason I got on board to start with as I do not want to use apple and I wanted to move away from the bloated and add world of android. However, I can see that there is a need to get the basic apps on board, not the ones that people use and need, rather than the ones that waste your time. These for me include a good browser, supported email client and a chat app (for tablets). Please letโ€™s get the basics sorted out, the stuff that people have come to expect, then letโ€™s look at getting others on board. Basics such as a camera date stamp, emails from facebook that can be opened and such like. Would something like โ€œwineโ€ not help here?

  • @Flohack yep don't go Google... look what happened to BB10: they gave partial-Google & people complained they can't get full-Google... really bitched & complained loudly and publicly for a long time. Now they've gone full Google and BB10 is dead.
    If you want Android, buy an Android, there's like hundreds to choose from.

  • I already said it in another thread, I don't want Android apps in UBports.

    For those who want a mixed Android experience there's LineageOS, and for those who want a full Android experience there's, well, Android.

    Please keep UBports as free as possible of Android and Google claws (yes I know about the mandatory layers that we can't avoid for now. Let's hope we'll be free from Google someday).

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