With Ubuntu In The Mix, 2014 Is The Year Of The Open Source Phone

Sam Dean | GigaOM | February 21, 2014

We've only hit February, and it already looks like 2014 is going to be the year of the open source phone. Not only is Android continuing to dominate the smartphone space in terms of market share, but Mozilla is widening its Firefox OS phone strategy and Canonical announced this week that Spain's bq and China's Meizu will be the first companies to bring Ubuntu smartphones to global users.

Canonical has remained busy enhancing the architecture of the Ubuntu Desktop, pushed into the television market, and is now going to pursue making Ubuntu a viable mobile phone platform.

In conjunction with the announcement of Ubuntu phones, Canonical's Mark Shuttleworth confirmed that development work on the first phones is already underway. Given the first two manufacturers, it won't be a surprise to see Canonical pursue a strategy similar to Mozilla's with Firefox OS, targeting emerging markets. However, we also know that devices will be available to buy online through bq, Meizu at Ubuntu.com, and carriers have shown interest, so Ubuntu phones could show up everywhere.