The Ubuntu Edge promised to be the smartest smartphone ever built, with an unscratchable crystal sapphire screen, 4GB of RAM, 128GB of storage and full-fat desktop and mobile versions of Ubuntu, in addition to dual-booting Android. But alas, it won't make it past its IndieGoGo financing page.
Despite smashing the crowdfunding record previously set by the Pebble smartwatch, the Ubuntu Edge raised 'only' US$12.6million of the US$32million it apparently required, and all the money already pledged will be returned (IndieGoGo would normally take a cut). The dream of a single device that works both as a smartphone and a PC has been extinguished. For now, at least.
Gone, not forgotten
Mark Shuttleworth of Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, tells The Guardian that although the Edge superphone won't be seeing the light of day, its record-breaking crowdfunding drive has sparked off network and manufacturer interest in Ubuntu-based smartphones.
Shuttleworth goes on to state that Ubuntu is preferable to Android, which is fragmented and "...struggles to build a clean, coherent user experience". He thinks that Ubuntu could be the best choice for "the 25%" of people who demand a smartphone but end up using it only for voice calls. Oddly, the exact opposite to the early adopters who will be most disappointed by news of the Edge's untimely demise.
However, Shuttleworth also thinks that we'll all eventually be won over by the concept of a device that works both as a smartphone and a desktop computer. Perhaps not yet, but in time.
If it came to it, would we pledge for the Edge 2? Yeah... perhaps.