On the same day as Microsoft announced its own foray into the hardware turf via its tablet computer called Surface, Dell has decided to launch personal computers in India loaded with Ubuntu.
Ubuntu, is a widely used Linux-based open source software and Dell India, along with Canonical Ltd., the UK-based owner, has decided to sell personal computers based on it.
In a statement, Canonical Ltd., which is the sponsor of Ubuntu software project, said that it has “entered into agreement with Dell to sell PCs loaded with Ubuntu”. The Ubuntu OS will be loaded on Dell laptops and netbooks only.
“The machines — including the new Inspiron 14R and 15R — will be available with Ubuntu pre-installed from June 21 and more models are slated for release later in the year,” Canonical CEO Jane Silber told reporters.
Dell, at present, sells PCs loaded with proprietary Microsoft Windows operating system, which is a paid software.
“The Ubuntu loaded PCs will be sold in 850 retail outlets in India,” Silber said. She added that the deal is part of company’s strategy to increase penetration in India market.
“Our focus is to build private cloud computing system for business houses in India. There is huge opportunity for companies to reduce their cost by deploying Ubuntu by replacing their proprietary OS,” Silber said.
So what exactly are the advantages with Ubuntu? Well more than being a free operating system, it is also relatively stable, much faster, virus-free and very similiar to Apple’s Unix based OS. Ubuntu is based on the Debian Linux distribution.
The cool thing about Ubuntu is that most updates and bugs are fixed by a community of coders and developers, who’ve been contributing to the project. Users have the option of installing Ubuntu simultaneously along with their Windows OS and choosing which one to run while booting up.
It’s interesting that Dell has gone for Ubuntu on the same day as Microsoft launched a tablet PC, Surface. The free-operating software revolution which is has been restricted to geeks and tech junkies will finally be going mainstream with Dell releasing Ubuntu loaded computers.
But will average users like the new OS? Will unfamiliarity doom the ‘commercial success’ of Ubuntu? Hopefully not because Ubuntu does have some serious edge over a regular Windows OS in terms of how convenient it can be. It’s very hard to lose data with Ubuntu, a problem that plagues many Windows users. With Ubuntu-developers creating various apps to run Windows applications on Ubuntu, the switch shouldn’t be so difficult.
With inputs from PTI