Ubuntu for Android: A new operating system for Smartphones


How would you like a PC that fits in your pocket? Well now multi-core Android phones can be PCs too with Ubuntu for Android, which enables high-end Android handsets to run Ubuntu, the world’s favourite free PC desktop operating system.


Ubuntu for Android, currently under development, is a free and open source variant of Ubuntu designed to run on Android phones. It is expected to come pre-loaded on several phones. An Ubuntu for Android mock-up was shown at Mobile World Congress 2012.



– Both Ubuntu and Android run at the same time on the mobile device, without emulation or virtualization, and without the need to reboot. This is possible because both Ubuntu and Android share the same kernel (Linux).

– When the device is connected to a desktop monitor, it features a standard Ubuntu Desktop interface (Unity).

– When the device is connected to a TV, the interface featured is the Ubuntu TV experience.

– Ability to run standard Ubuntu Desktop applications, like Firefox, Thunderbird, VLC, etc.

– Ability to run Android applications on the Ubuntu Desktop.

– Make and receive calls and SMSs directly from the Desktop.


According to Canonical a phone needs the following requirements:

CPUDual-core 1 GHz
Video accelerationShared kernel driver with associated X driver; OpenGL, ES/EGL
Storage2 GB for OS disk image
HDMIVideo-out with secondary framebuffer device
USBHost mode


1) Deliver the enterprise next-gen desktop in a single device.

2) Drive adoption of 4G handsets, as online apps like Google Docs shine with low-latency connections.

3) Expand your service portfolio from the smart phone to the smart desktop by delivering productivity desktop apps, including managed Windows apps as a service on your network.

4) Satisfy demand for first PCs to families in emerging economies with no legacy wired connectivity.


1) Drive sales of multi-core phones with faster CPUs, more cores, more RAM and high-end graphics.

2) Target lucrative markets for thin client in the enterprise and first PCs in emerging markets.

3) Integrate easily with Android phones already in development.

4) Accessorise with docks, cables, keyboards and displays.


This document will prepare an overview of the steps you will take to install and configure Android on your Ubuntu Linux system.

TIP: You must have Oracle Java JDK or OpenJDK on your system before installing Android SDK.

First of all, open JDK (aka Open Java Development Kit), which is a free and open source implementation of the Java programming language. Moreover, you will learn how to:

– Prepare your development environment and ensure it meets the system requirements.

– Install the Android Software Development Kit (SDK)s.

– Download and Configure the Eclipse Integrated Development Environment (IDE).

– Install the Android Development Tool (ADT) Plug-in for Eclipse IDE

– Add Android platforms and other components to your SDK.

– Create your Android Virtual Device (AVD).

For more details just try the following link:


Last but not least, Ubuntu has released the “Ubuntu 13.10” for smartphones (aka Ubuntu Touch), which at the first glance it looks like any other mobile operating system. Some of the differences are minor. For instance, there’s a search bar on the top along with the usual device indicators and the main window displays only what’s currently in use instead of a default selection of icons. A closer look reveals an operating system and user interface (UI) that’s not quite like any other mobile UI. 


It seems like Ubuntu for Android, provides a full desktop experience, including office software, web browsing, email and media applications, on Android phones docked to a screen and keyboard. Thanks to tight integration with the Android service layer, the transition between the two environments is seamless, making it easy to access the phone’s services from the desktop when docked. So, maybe it is time to try a new mobile operating system, and look over for some new benefits..


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