COMMUNITY UPDATE 8

July 22th 2017
22 July 2017

 
 

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Shownotes

TIMESTAMPS AND DESCRIPTION

00:01:05 Halium Updates
00:05:00 Ubuntu Touch 16.04 Test Builds are shipping
00:08:05 Plasma Mobile with Bhushan
00:14:05 Changing gears back to Xenial test builds
00:16:06 Flo is back! (then back to Xenial)
00:17:56 Yunit News
00:20:16 Ubuntu Touch 16.04 show and tell
00:21:20 Back to Yunit News
00:22:30 The new UBports Get Involved page
00:28:55 OTA-2 Status Update
00:31:31 Will you try to reach an agreement to gain the Android source for BQ or Meizu devices?
00:34:30 Raving about convergence
00:43:00 Which device do you think I should buy for Ubuntu Touch?
00:44:30 Which device do you think I should buy for Plasma Mobile?
00:46:12 Super secret question
00:48:50 Will there be updates to prepare for 16.04?
00:50:02 Will there be a new flagship for Ubuntu Touch?
The rest is winding down.

We held our latest Community Update on July 22nd, 2017. You can watch it here The Community Update is a great chance for community members to come in, hang out, and get some questions answered. If that sounds like fun to you (and it should!), you should definitely be watching the General category in our forum for the next one!

This week we were joined by Bhushan Shah, developer of Plasma Mobile and Halium.

Without any further ado, let's get into our news and questions.


Halium News with Bhushan

The recent work in Halium has been making the stock Rootfs - which developers install on their devices to test Halium functionality - work with some new devices. There has also been progress on packaging Halium bits for different operating systems, which thus far has not been going very well.

Work has also been done on the task of creating a new version of Halium for Android 7.1, which will allow savvy porters to get the future Plasma Mobile and Ubuntu Touch 16.04 working on their newer devices. The Nexus 5 and 5X are the initial "starting point" devices for Halium 7.1.

Marius from the UBports project has mainly been working on making Halium work with our new Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial-based operating system. This includes refining Halium itself so it suits our use case. We're also working on making our Continuous Integration infrastructure build Halium and Ubuntu Touch 16.04.

To help with Halium, be sure to get a hold of the project via #halium on Freenode, their Telegram channel (linked on their website), or the Matrix channel #halium:matrix.org. These are all bound together with Matrix, so just pick the one you like!


Ubuntu Touch 16.04 "Almost kinda" Works

Some of our more vigilant users have noticed that there are 16.04 images appearing on our system-image server for the Nexus 5. Please don't install them unless you're trying to debug the low-level bits of the OS. We've managed to get Unity 8 starting (until it stops) and most of the phone hardware can be accessed using the command line. However, Ubuntu Touch 16.04 is not ready for everyday use.

If you aren't using your phone as a daily driver and want to help us develop, check out the instructions for installing and hacking it here


Plasma News with Bhushan

At this point we gave Bhushan the floor to talk a bit about Plasma Mobile.

Because Plasma Mobile has gone through several low-level changes in its lifetime, it is not quite ready for daily driver use. The user interface hasn't been given as much love as it should, so it is really meant for developers who want to further the Plasma Mobile platform.

Marius stated that anyone who is truly interested in the alternative operating system space for Android phones should give Plasma Mobile a try on a spare phone.

If you'd like to get involved with Plasma Mobile, check out the KDE Community Wiki. Plasma Mobile developers are also available via IRC in #plasma on Freenode.


Thanks, Sponsors!

We always need to take some time to thank our sponsors. They make Ubuntu Touch possible.

Thank you to all of our Patrons as well as Digital Ocean, Private Internet Access, and most graciously, Smoose.

Also, thanks everyone who makes one-time Paypal or Bitcoin donations! We never forget about you all.


Yunit News

John Salatas of Yunit has been working hard on packaging Yunit and rebuilding it with Qt 5.9.

We've asked to see Yunit built with Qt 5.9 so we can gain performance improvements for the ARM platforms and QtQuick2 (which makes writing apps much faster).

It's also possible to use Vanilla QtCreator downloaded from the Qt website with Yunit. Maybe in the future it'll be easy to download this upstream tool and make Ubuntu Touch apps with it.


Our New Get Involved Page

A lot of people come to us saying, "I'm not a developer, but I want to help you guys achieve your goals." We just made that a little easier

Check out our redesigned Get Involved page to learn about all of the ways you can help. Some parts aren't completed, but we would love if you checked it out and let us know what you think.


OTA-2 Status Report

OTA-2's due date was previously set for August 1st. With all of our development time going to Halium and UT 16.04, we haven't given the Legacy stuff much work.

We've decided that we will cut a release based on closed issues rather than date. It's easier and more exciting to release a well-tested update with many fixes. With that in mind, you can check out the OTA-2 milestone here.


Question Time

At this point in the Community Update, we take some time to answer questions we've gathered from the community. Think of it like the feedback section of your favorite audiocast/podcast, if it took up half the show.


Will you try to reach an agreement to gain the Android source for BQ or Meizu devices?

So far, we haven't tried. The way we see it, if the relative giant that is Canonical wasn't able to get BQ or Meizu to release their Android source, how are we going to acquire it? Further, we don't see the return on our spent time being when compared to all the legal matters we'd have to sort out.


Could you gush about convergence for a while?

Okay, so that wasn't really the question. However, that's what it turned into. Marius told everyone about his dreams of a convergent device for about 5 minutes. Then, Flo joined in and added another 2 minutes. Then, Marius came back for another minute. It was a great time.


Which device do you think I should buy for Ubuntu Touch?

Marius answered "Oneplus One" immediately. So now you know his opinion.

In terms of porting quality, the Fairphone 2 and Nexus 5 are fairly well polished. The Nexus 5 has slimport so you can connect your phone to an HDMI display. The Oneplus One is the cheapest for the specs. The camera doesn't work on the Oneplus One yet.


Is someone working on the Ubuntu SDK?

Not right now. Your best bet is to head over to our wiki and check out the links in the sidebar under "App Development".


Will 15.04 app binaries work on 16.04? How about the other way around?

No. Ubuntu changed gcc versions between 15.04 and 16.04, they are not binary-compatible. We might be able to run 15.04 apps on 16.04 after a rebuild. We may not. We're not sure yet.


That is it

Thanks again for being here with us for all of our Community Updates, and for taking part in our community. If you want to see / read more about us, be sure to sign up for the mailing list that suits you on our homepage.

We'll see you next time!