Ubuntu for Phones Announced

Looks OK aesthetically, but the purely swipe-and-gesture based UI is a loser. It’s confusing. Swipe from the right takes you to the next most recently used app, but swipe from the left does something completely different (show a list of favorite apps). I’ve said before: gestures are the touchscreen equivalent of keyboard shortcuts: a convenient alternative, but almost never a good choice for the primary interface for a task. Ubuntu has designed a phone interface consisting entirely of gestures; it’s like a desktop interface with nothing but keyboard shortcuts.

I expect Ubuntu for Phones to be about as relevant as Ubuntu is on the desktop. Vlad Savov at The Verge has hands-on video of the system as it stands today, and — shocker — it’s laggy as hell.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013