After a long time of Ubuntu’s Mobile phone announcement now Ubuntu is ready to release its smartphone who’s name is Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition and it is built by Spanish company BQ. This little-known manufacturer of tablets and e-readers is adapting one of its Android handsets to run Ubuntu which will available in just over $190 in a series of flash sales across Europe. It’s an unusual way to release a phone: followers of the @ubuntu and @bqreaders Twitter accounts will be the first to be alerted any time the Aquaris E4.5 UE becomes available to buy.
The modest price is matched by this first Ubuntu phone’s barebone spec sheet. The 4.5-inch display has only HD resolution (540 x 960), the processor is a 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek chip, but no LTE, and the onboard storage is limited to 8GB. To offset these restrictions, the Aquaris allows memory expansion via a microSD card and also has two micro-SIM slots for added flexibility. If there’s one spec indulgence here, it’s the 5-megapixel front-facing camera, which BQ highlights as a major feature on the Android variant of this phone.
At the outset, The Aquaris E4.5 Ubuntu Edition will feature Facebook, Twitter, Amazon,Time Out, Yelp, and Cut the Rope among its best-known partners, with Spotify, SoundCloud, and Grooveshark also being integrated via their web APIs. The Ubuntu phone “supports mainstream HTML5 beautifully,” says Canonical, and the company’s categorical that it’s “not coming out with yet another iOS or Android clone.” What you’ll get is something altogether different, a fresh experience built around screen-edge interactionsand tailored Scopes that aim at “reversing the hackneyed status quo.” It’s a bold set of promises, though it’s likely to find a receptive audience in its first buyers, who will necessarily be Ubuntu fans already.
There will be no retail availability of the Aquaris. It will be on sale via sporadic flash sales over the coming weeks, recruiting early adopters and trying to build up into a viable mobile platform. The climb toward that goal looks as long and hazardous as Ubuntu’s mobile struggles to this point, but today marks an important milestone along the way.