Canonical, the creators of Ubuntu, launched an ambitious crowd sourcing venture this past June to begin funding Ubuntu Edge, a completely new kind of smartphone. In the short time they gave themselves, Canoncacle has crowd sourced an impressive $10, 288, 472 million in funding on Indiegogo for its Ubuntu smartphone Edge.
For those who are unaware, Ubuntu is a linux based desktop operating system that is completely open source, and free. It has been slowly finding a foot hold in government and scholastic institutions as it also creates a stronger following for servers and cloud computing.
Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth originally created Ubuntu to provide a viable free desktop platform and now he has his eye on mobile computing, but with a twist. Shuttleworth is essentially wanting to create a hand held computer. Not only that, but wanting a continuity of experience regardless as to the particular device you want to use at any given moment.
Ubuntu Edge has an ambitious set of stats, looking to have 4 GB of RAM, a 128 GB solid state hard drive and the device could be used as a full desktop. The idea would be: plug it into a monitor, add keyboard and mouse, and you are working like you would on any regular desktop platform.
An idea this big and ambitious has turned some heads as well as generating a lot of interest. Shuttleworth’s crowd sourcing campaign set a very lofty goal of $32 million, essentially to fund a first run of 40,000 handsets. Before Ubuntu Edge crowd sourcing campaign, the two largest amounts eared were $1.6 million by Scandu Scout to build a medical Star Trek style ‘Tricorder‘ on Indiegogo and Pebble Smartwatch, which generated $10.2 million on Kickstarter.
To say that tripling the highest crowd sourcing goal to date is ambitious may be underselling it. However, with four days left to raise funds the fact that the project has topped the previously held position of most money raised, is very impressive. What’s even more impressive is that it is for a linux based system which is open source. Even with large contributors like Bloomberg, which pledged $80,000 to the project, it may not move forward.
The terms for the fundraising through Indiegogo states – if Canonical falls short of their $32 million goal, then all the money pledged will have to be returned to the backers. Which, essentially, would mean they were able to actually raise no money. But, it may not be a total loss because of the fact we are talking about it means he is reaching a wider audience about his intentions then Shuttleworth may have originally done.
Mark Shuttleworth believes that not reaching his crowd sourcing goal only means it will be pushing Ubuntu Edge’s development back a couple of years, not a huge blow- and he has still managed to create an even larger buzz in the tech world about his smart device idea.
It seems this kind of integrated computing and integrated interfacing is the next logical step to unify all of our ‘smart’ devices. With cloud space becoming more readily available and accessible anywhere, our devices are simply processing portals to our cloud stored information. The devices themselves are becoming less and less important because the information and functionality is not limited to a single physical device as it once was.
Regardless as to whether Mark Shuttleworth gets some miracle funding to bridge the $20 million gap to reach his crowd sourcing goal or not, more and more people are getting excited and going to be excited about the development of this amazing product. And it still stands, Canonical’s crowd sourcing for Ubuntu Edge is incredibly impressive.
By Iam Bloom