Plasma Mobile is already a reality

I must say, I'm excited. A few days ago, watching the progress of Plasma Mobile With the Plasma Phone project, I commented on my social networks that Ubuntu had to get on with it, but I never thought that Plasma Phone was already a reality and in such a short period of time.

What is Plasma Phone?

The short answer: KDE on your phone. In other words, Plasma Workspace, KWIN / Wayland and Telepathy technology to manage phone calls.

Plasma Phone

How to install Plasma Phone apps

All this running on Kubuntu, where according to what they tell us on their website, we can install applications regardless of whether it is GTK or QT, with a simple:

apt-get install paquete

The applications that we can install are:

  • Plasma Applications.
  • Ubuntu Touch (.click)
  • Gnome apps (ex: GnomeChess)
  • X11 (ex: xmame)
  • and possibly others based on Qt like Sailfish OS or Nemo.

Obviously, there is still a lot of development ahead for Plasma Phone be able to be a stable variant compared to the mobile Operating Systems that are already on the market, but it can be tested, yes, for now only in a LG Nexus 5.

Since I have one, I may decide to try it a little later, when I have added more functionalitiesHowever, if you are one of the brave with a Nexus 5 who wants to try it, you just have to continue these instructions.

My take on Plasma Phone

This gets interesting. When we thought that Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and other more incipient OS such as Sailfish, FirefoxOS or Ubuntu Phone were all the alternatives we had, this little gem appears. For iOS and Android there is apparently no concern, but FirefoxOS and Ubuntu Phone are having a difficult time.

FirefoxOS is not quite taking off. It was a very good idea that had a rather mediocre launch, especially due to the lack of Applications and integration with social networks. An operating system that struggles to survive, but unfortunately has less and less attention, at least in the media. In the Plasma Mobile forum a user asked:

Right now I use Firefox OS because it is the best mobile OS I have experienced so far in my life. What does Plasma Mobile offer me that Firefox OS doesn't?

Now I use Firefox OS as it is the best mobile operating system I have ever experienced in my life. What does Plasma Mobile offer me that Firefox OS doesn't?

The answer was blunt:

Qt / C ++ and QML native apps.

Qt / C ++ and native applications in QML.

And I must say, it's a very good answer. HTML5 promises, it may be the future, but my time using Firefox OS showed me that it is not as fast as it promised to be.

Ubuntu Phone so what to say? I've tried it, I've seen it work and it suffers from the same as FirefoxOS ... mediocre applications and usability that leaves much to be desired. Still, I think it has a future if Canonical people do things well.

Now comes Plasma Phone with an interesting proposal, without reinventing anything, using a technology that is proven and that works. In addition, it allows you to install any type of application practically regardless of whether it is Qt or GTK, and seeing the recent news of the project that KDE is developing to run Android applications natively, I already see the sense of everything.

I have not read anything yet about the integration that Ubuntu Phone intends and that is already visible in OSX and iOS, but using the same Plasma technology I do not think it is very rare to see progress in that regard soon.

There is still a lot ahead, Plasma Phone is not perfect, it even needs its visual touch-ups, but I leave the video for you to get an idea of ​​how things are going.

What do you think?


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  1.   Jesus Ballesteros said

    I am very interested in this project and also Sailfish, but I have not seen a way to send them to Latin America to test it.

    1.    Alejandro Tor Mar said

      There are no Latin American companies interested in investing in these projects… also the Latin market is very monopolized and people usually opt for embedded Windows, ios and Android…

      1.    clown said

        what you say reminded me when FirefoxOS arrived in my country, they advertised it as a smartphone for children (my first smartphone).

  2.   Bitl0rd said

    How good this news. I love plasma and Kde. Hopefully it matures quickly, the other would be compatibility and performance due to the diversity of terminals

  3.   snayder said

    it looks more like a customization layer for ubuntu phone. Could it be installed in the future in ubuntu touch as plasma is installed in ubuntu? it would be great.

  4.   Daniel said

    Excellent news, the more alternatives there are, the better. I am impatient for some of this to reach Latin America. Regards.

  5.   Yukiteru said

    These people can compete directly with Android, BB and Windows Phone without problems, they just need to move their chips well, we'll see what all this holds in the future 😀

  6.   Raul P said

    Ubuntu phone is the cheap copy of the iphone, in this KDE video I saw similar icons ...

    DON'T HAVE GRAPHIC DESIGNERS? WHY DO THEY HAVE TO USE THE SAME IOS ICONS?

    1.    joaco said

      Wtf?
      Ubuntu phone does not look like the iphone, nor does it have buttons and cheap is not an idea like that
      And the icons used by the usual kde ones, one or two out there look a bit like the ios ones, which copied the numix layout anyway.
      In any case, it is an alpha version, they already showed new icons that they are designing for kde, and surely you will be able to change them if you don't like them.
      In addition, it does not bother me that they copy some things from the design of other interfaces, really the interfaces of ios and android are good and easy to understand, it is not necessary for them to invent a whole new concept in interface as ubuntu did. Considering that kde was always in favor of a traditional desktop, it is not bad that they do the same in their mobile version, which, by the way, is very well achieved and reminds of kde desktop plasma, it even has the same themes, it sounds like it will have very good integration.
      I really hope they are successful because it looks very good. I guess it works on ubuntu phone right?

  7.   Jairo said

    Excellent. one question, what happened to active plasma? I think that project stayed quiet or is it already dead? Although I am proKDE I must say that my next phone will be a jolla, sailfish is spectacular. I am also waiting for the Jolla tablet that I bought during your croudfounding.

  8.   Alejandro Tor Mar said

    For the followers of KDE we are happy, but I see far away having one of those in my hands

  9.   clown said

    but remembering that you can integrate an android smartphone in KDE, and see messages, pass things on the clipboard, and many other things, I can only imagine how it should be with this new OS, I could bet that it will be better than what iOS has and OSX

  10.   joaco said

    I loved it, I hope they have success and start to build something like what we already have in linux, but to arm.
    By the way, I found firefox quite wrong, the truth is that that OS is not very good for me, very based on web applications.

  11.   eliotime3000 said

    To tell the truth, this project looks a lot more tangible than Firefox OS (it has just started to take off on Panasonic SmartViera TVs) and Ubuntu Phone (so far, I don't see it in Latin America).

    Regarding the interface and other toolkits, this is really worth it.

  12.   Mark said

    Hello,
    Nice project 🙂 As a point, it is based on Ubuntu Phone. Which I see well, being KDE and Ubuntu Phone based on QML can only reverse benefits in both.
    A greeting.

  13.   Endika Moreno said

    I'm really glad. I don't use KDE but I like to follow in its footsteps and test its new features. I admire it, but I stick to my standalone compiz in arch. As for compatibility with android apps, it does not necessarily mean that it is like having Android in KDE. I currently use a BlackBerry Passport which runs without problems almost all Android apps, but it should be noted that without google services many of the ones that work are not worth much, and I doubt that google will adapt its services for other OSs. As native applications there is nothing and in fact KDE would not need much help from apks ...
    Greetings to all!

  14.   Merlin The Debianite said

    Does it mean that now I can have supertux on my cell phone? XD

    No longer seriously very good the project hurts that I do not have a nexus but in my opinion it is a better system than ios and Android, I mean it they are easier and more intuitive from what can be seen in the video.

    1.    eliotime3000 said

      Surely SuperTux will come to Android through F-Droid, because I doubt it will reach Google Play.

  15.   rainerhg7 said

    Wow! Indeed, this project is more feasible for me (as Eliot put it). I hope that from here they inform us when there is availability of purchase / crowfounding.
    Greetings colleague Elav, and thank you for sharing this good news! (I didn't even know)

  16.   Bruno cascio said

    Good post @elav!

    I wanted to contribute with something perhaps more statistical than configuration.
    Although the easiest and fastest way to calculate the consumption parameter is with the mean, perhaps we could be more rigorous and use the "median" instead of the "mean". What would save us? That the numbers shoot up in case a connection has consumed a lot of memory. For example, suppose the following clients that consume the following values, in the unit of memory they want (KB, MB, MiB, etc):

    10, 15, 150, 5, 7, 10, 11, 12

    The average would give approx ~ 30

    And this because we have a very large end (150), and the calculations are crazy. The median consists of ordering these data, dividing the number of samples by 2 (our center) and then obtaining the number of that position. With this we would have something like

    5, 7, 10, 10, 11, 12, 15, 150

    So our mean would be: 8/2 = 4 that is ~ 10

    Here you can see that no matter how crazy the extreme may be, it will always give us a more realistic value. If we add a customer who consumes 200, our median will be 11, while the average may go to …….

    It is only a contribution, and it is very debatable, because with the connections it is not screwed.

    Hug people linuxera 🙂

    1.    Bruno cascio said

      erre de post 😛

    2.    Hugo said

      Man, to avoid extreme values ​​there are things like the geometric mean, although the weighted mean could also be used so that the statistics are closer to the number of teams that have a certain capacity, etc.

  17.   Drassill said

    It will be necessary to see if it is a stable distribution, but the truth is that KDE is doing a fantastic job in all aspects ... At the functionalities level it seems quite complete; the problem will be the same as always: The applications. Any operating system that does not have Whatsap (whether we like it or not it is a reality) will not achieve the same growth as the rest of its competitors. Anyway, at the moment I see it very complete and with a design quite in line with Plasma5, with what is probably a system that has a lot to talk about.

    1.    roberto said

      If sailfish applications can be ported, there will be no problems with whatsapp, we currently have two whatsapp apps in jolla, one at least working perfectly.

  18.   Salvador Flores said

    How do I have the installer and install on my cell phone.
    You.-

  19.   nolgan said

    If kde mobile and kubuntu were integrated into the mobile directly, and with a dock connect hd to it, monitor keyboard mouse and have mobile and computer in the same device

    It would be to put linux distro 100% integrated in mobile and be able to use the mobile as a BASE computer, or tablet and as a mobile

    this is the future where linux distros has to go ... and samsung has presented its version, windows with contniums ubuntu badly achieved ubuntu for andorid

    but I think this would be the real future

    Today any high-end mobile has power to move distros 100% as if it were a normal computer .. using a dock to put peripherals and be able to use them as a BASE computer, monitor, hd, keyboard or mouse ethent printer

    a lsaudo desire to see the final version and that it can be installed in the largest number of mobiles if possible in all ... doing a compilation