After an eye-popping pitch for a futuristic, dual-booting smartphone-desktop hybrid, the Ubuntu Edge secured the world record for crowdfunding on August 15th, with $10,266,845 pledged. It's since been boosted up to $12.8 million, but unfortunately, that's a far cry from the $32 million that the Canonical company asked for. The Indiegogo campaign has failed, no sponsors will be charged, and no money will be collected.
Say what you will about Canonical and founder Mark Shuttleworth's outlandish goal, but the conceptual hardware and software for the Ubuntu Edge is the stuff that smartphone dreams are made of.
So, the folks at Canonical have been talking up their Ubuntu smartphone platform for a little over six months. Today they revealed their ultimate plan to revolutionize the smartphone world, a fantastic Death Star of a concept device: the Ubuntu Edge. It's a beautiful slab of metal that features some of the most outlandish mobile hardware ever seen, it runs Ubuntu for smartphones, doubles as a dockable ARM-powered desktop, and dual-boots Android.
A lot of people are excited for Google Glass right now. The first Explorer units began rolling into the happy embrace of those selected for the exclusive pilot program just last week, and we've already seen a ton of feedback. Combined with decent pre-release coverage, it's clear that Glass has the potential to shake things up once more people have it in their hands. Of course press coverage and user excitement only form part of the story.
We're all eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Ouya and the one question we need to have answered is whether or not the platform will be able to acquire enough interesting games to be worthwhile. One of the ways the company is generating interest and content is with a 10-day developer competition. Keeping in mind that the entire programming process occurred in a little more than a week (and in some cases, less than that) and all the titles are unfinished, here's a look at some of the games that may end up on the console.
Car manufactures and consumer electronics companies have been growing closer than you might think over the past few years, with self-driving concept cars being demonstrated with remote control from a smartphone in mind. This is more obvious than ever at this year's CEATEC in Japan, where manufacturers such as Nissan have taken to the stage and shown off some really cool technology.
One of the company's latest concept cars, the NSC-2015, highlights what can be done when your car and smartphone are on the same wavelength.
HTC has been sitting out the tablet game for a while now. After the monumental failure of the Flyer and the Jetstream, the Taiwanese manufacturer has kept its nose out of the slate market. If these images are to be believed, though, the company is at least considering new ideas. Some very strange ideas at that. The pictures show a tablet that has one abnormally large bezel area, while the three others are normal sized.
Update: I've refined a few of my points in this article to focus less on the whole "how much it costs to make a video game" angle, because I'm not exactly an expert on project funding. I think the point I'm trying to illustrate about Kickstarter as a whole is now clearer, and articulated in a more generally-applicable manner.
Note: This piece is of tangential relation to Android (and it grew more tangential as I wrote it), but the game in question is a joint Kickstarter venture promising an Android game, M.U.L.E.
There's certainly no shortage of homescreen replacements for Android, but who's to say that we can't have one more? And you've got to admit, this concept app - Fipplr - looks really nice, and doesn't appear to fall short in terms of functionality, either.
Fipplr includes widgets for multiple apps, including Flickr, Twitter, and Google Latitude, although they aren't exactly the widgets we are used to. These widgets display quick information, and a quick swipe to the right will bring up an expanded view of the widget.
I have a soft spot for well done demoes, even if they exist only in concept form, and today's design by Kristian Ulrich Larsen fits right into this category (did you really expect anything else from a designer with such an awesome name?).
If you liked Mozilla's Seabird concept, you're going to love the Flip Phone, which features 3 flexible, curved AMOLED screens connected by "soft steel mesh hinges," which allow this device to morph into multiple configurations, each offering something different to its user.
In the world of design mock-ups, where phones are seen with operating systems as-yet unavailable to them, the Nexus One can make video calls. Nope, this isn't an internal hardware hack like we saw on the Vibrant; it's a simple attachment in the form of an array of prisms and mirrors called OneMoreFace. We've already seen a few examples of this idea implemented for the older (pre-iPhone 4) iPhones, but this is probably the slickest design so far.