Not to be left out of this week’s Mobile World Congress hype, Ubuntu released a video today showcasing its new mobile platform for tablets.
Ubuntu has been on our radar since we got to see an early version of its mobile operating system for smartphones at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada last month. While the camera interface was too undeveloped to warrant a story at that time, my overall impression of the operating system was hopeful. Camera access was quick from the lock screen and the folks manning the CES booth assured me that the underwhelming camera app was in development.
The Ubuntu tablet video released today primarily focuses on navigation, but also gives a peek into what we can expect from the photo editing software.
The video is relatively long—over six minutes of demo. To skip to the part when founder Mark Shuttleworth opens the photo gallery/editing app, jump to 3:46.
Based on observation alone, it appears that Ubuntu might be onto something unique with app integration in its native photo editor. With an image open, Ubuntu seems to host additional apps in a side panel where users can pick and choose from effects -- a far different experience than needing to open an image in one app at a time. You can see the icon for the popular Gimp software as well as two other icons that I did not recognize. Then again, these could be currently open applications, but we'll keep hoping for some exciting photography-related features.
Users can also search for desired effects by either using the touch keyboard or voice command. In the video, the user searched for “exposure” controls and the software produced a list including exposure, darken/lighten and exporting tools.
A preview of both the phone and tablet operating systems will be available on Thursday from Ubuntu's developer site. The smartphone platform will work on Samsung's Galaxy Nexus as well as Google’s LG Nexus 4. The Ubuntu tablet operating system will be available for the Nexus 7 and 10.
We will be keeping an eye on Ubuntu at the Mobile World Congress next and throughout the year as it prepares its mobile operating systems for an official release.