At MWC this week we’ve seen a few new mobile operating systems pop up on the radar, most notably the appearance of Tizen, Firefox OS and also Ubuntu Touch, a mobile version of the popular Ubuntu Linux OS from Canonical. We caught up with two Smartphones running an early version of Ubuntu Touch at the Ubuntu booth at MWC 2014, the Meizu MX3 and the bq Aquaris.
Ubuntu Touch is a fairly innovative attempt at a mobile OS in that it departs from current Android and iOS navigation in favor plenty of ‘Swiping’, ‘Magic Edges’ and ‘Scopes’. The idea is to make Ubuntu as intuitive as possible; you access your apps by swiping the left edge of the display, thus revealing an app launcher which scrolls horizontally. A swipe from the right edge to the left will take you back to the previous app, while bottom to up swipe. If nothing else, Ubuntu is proving that you can certainly do a lot with a swipe.
Canonical announced bq (Spain) and Meizu (China) as their first hardware partners about a week ago. bq is Spain’s largest retailer of unlocked Smartphones, while Meizu is one of China’s most well respected manufacturers, producing some of the best high-end hardware we’ve seen from come out of China.
The bq Aquaris has a 4.5″ display powered by a1.5GHz quad core MediaTek SoC while the Meizu MX3 is a 5.1″device running on the Samsung Exynos 5410, a quad core 1.6GHz which is also used most notably in many Samsung Galaxy S4 models.
Check out Nicole’s hands on video from the Ubuntu booth at MWC 2014: