Ubuntu 17.10 closeup

Ubuntu 17.10's biggest change is the fact that it uses GNOME by default. But why, after seven years, has Canonical abandoned its Convergence efforts?

On October 25, Mark Shuttleworth, the founder of Canonical sat down with eWEEK, and discussed what's next in store for the company and its operating system.

Of course, such a discussion would not be complete without discussing the recent death of Unity, along with Canonical's Convergence ambitions that aimed to put Ubuntu on all sorts of consumer devices from phones to televisions.

According to Shuttleworth, the reason behind killing Unity was economics. Canonical is planning to become a public company. As part of this process, the company had to adapt. Specifically, Canonical is focusing on its successful core businesses.

Ubuntu is very successful in many areas. It is one of the most popular desktop Linux distributions, the default distribution for most computers shipping with Linux, and is the distribution supported by Valve in its efforts to bring gaming to Linux. On servers, Ubuntu is also king, being the most popular Linux distribution, according to W3Techs. Same with the cloud: Ubuntu is the undisputed number one on Amazon EC2, according to The Cloud Market.

Canonical's mobile ambitions, though, were not as successful. The company's attempt to crowdfund a Ubuntu phone did not manage to raise enough money, and while some phones running the OS eventually did come out, it was just too late for the platform.

Breaking into the mobile business is quite hard – and as news this year have shown, not even huge corporations can always do it. Shuttleworth still believes in Unity, but it was simply not justifiable to spend so much money on its development, especially now that the company is planning to go public. Instead, all effort will go towards areas where the company has already found success.

What do you think? Did Canonical make the right move? Let us know in the comments below!

via OMG! Ubuntu!