Ubuntu abandons its phone efforts, will switch back to GNOME

In a bombshell blog post today (via OMG Ubuntu), Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Canonical, the maker of Ubuntu, announced the company will stop investing in its “Unity” user interface for Linux and instead move back to GNOME as a default for the next major version of Ubuntu. This also ends work on Ubuntu phones, which has been a major focus for the company in recent years.

“The choice, ultimately, is to invest in the areas which are contributing to the growth of the company,” Shuttleworth writes.

Canonical’s Ubuntu is one of the many shining success stories of the grand Linux experiment. It’s nearly ubiquitous in the server world, it’s available in Windows of all places, and it’s a very polished and user-friendly desktop operating system in its own right. But Canonical’s attempts over the past few years to branch out into phones and tablets have been a near total failure.

About time.