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(GNU) Linux on the Tablet in 2013

Posted in GNU/Linux at 4:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Desktop? Bypass that.

Motorola Xoom
Photo by Pjpearce

Summary: Celebrating the quick growth of Android on the tablet, which in turn facilitates GNU/Linux on more tablets

Tablets are a growing market. A lot of people have tablets these days. The concepts behind tablets are not new; they have been around for decades and Apple popularised them with hypePad (paying celebrities for endorsements and other such spin); in 2013 tablets running Android pretty much left Apple hypePad in the dust, just as Android had done to hypePhone in prior years.

As many tablets running Android are permissive in the sense that the user can install alternative operating systems (like Replicant or full GNU/Linux distributions) it should be no surprise that a rise in Android on the tablet will spur a growth of GNU/Linux on tablets (commercial efforts on this have been made before and are still being made [1]).

Android on the tablet currently accounts for the lion’s share of the market. To give some examples from this month’s news, there is a new $38 Android tablet [2], there are dual screen tablets [3], there’s ZaTab [4], and there are even national efforts in India [5].

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Will ZaReason’s second tablet also be a dud?

    A company that last year put on sale an Android tablet that turned out to be a dud is marketing a new model this year – and using most of the same marketing spiel from 2012 to try and sell it.

  2. $38 Android tablet the new king of cheap

    Datawind is bringing three commercial “UbiSlate” versions of its 7-inch, Android 4.0 Aakash tablets to the U.S., including a model that starts at $38.

    Datawind’s three new UbiSlate tablets are based on the Aakash 2 educational tablet that shipped in India in early 2012, as well as an upcoming Aakash 3 model. The Aakash 2 was hailed as the world’s cheapest tablet, at about $40, and was available to schoolchildren at lower prices thanks to subsidization by the Indian school system. In India, sales of the Aakash 2 overtook the iPad according to U.K.-based Datawind.

  3. YotaPhone. Always-on dual screen, thicker than most, but not by much

    The YotaPhone is a smartphone from Yota Devices Ltd., a Russian company that also manufactures a portable LTE router called Ruby.

    YotaPhone is an Android smartphone, running Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. But it’s different from other smartphones (Android and otherwise) in that it comes with a dual screen (it’s a double-display smartphone). On the front is a 4.3-inch, HD LCD display and on the back is an e-ink display that’s also 4.3 inches.

  4. Testing the New ZaTab Open Hackable Android Tablet
  5. Shri Kapil Sibal Releases Updated and Advanced Urdu Language Software Tools CD, Bharat Operating System Solutions (Boss 5.0) CD and Urdu Children Stories for Android Based Aakash Tablet

    The “Bharat Operating System Solutions CD (BOSS 5.0)” is a GNU / Linux developed by C-DAC under the guidance of Free and Open Source Software’s (FOSS) group of DeitY, Govt. of India is having Urdu language interface. This localized Operating System and tools will benefit the usage of Free / Open Source Software in India. This new release of BOSS 5.0, namely “ANOKHA” comes with many new applications focused on enhanced security and user friendliness. The release also includes the software updates for various packages including Apache Server, BIND DNS Server, GNU Compiler collection, GIMP, MySQL, Open SSH, php, python, etc.

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