I have to try this!

The team is landing Unity 8 in the Ubuntu Universe archive today – great news!


Before you are getting your hopes up too high though, it is worth mentioning that the integration of Unity 8 into Ubuntu Desktop is not scheduled to happen for 13.10 but will only be fully integrated for 14.10. The QML based Unity 8 is currently fully integrated on the Ubuntu Touch images only.

This means that all data providing backends are only hooked into Unity 8 on Ubuntu Touch. On Ubuntu Desktop 13.10 Unity 8 can be started as an application and gives you an idea of where we are going, but is far from the intended user experience we are going to provide by 14.10. Unity 8 on the Desktop consumes some of the Desktop data providers, but the behavior and layout is not yet optimized for the Desktop.

How is it looking?

Simply said: pretty! Regardless of the rough edges. Remember, this is showing the designs which were implemented for the phone first, adoption for the Desktop will come later.

We have put an overlay in place (“Early Alpha, not ready for use”) to clearly state the obvious – don’t try this at home on your Desktop (which had my vote for the overlay text;). If you want to see all the current goodness of Unity 8 you will have to give the Ubuntu Touch images a spin.

the login screen with Infographic, click "Tap to Unlock" to enter Unity8 music_scope
the Music scope, showing some classy music laptop_mode_start
individual tracks vs. Albums music_albums_todo
Music Preview in action, one of the best songs on this album btw music_preview
Home is where my files are home
Access to all my apps on the system, plus some mocked ones apps
The equivalent of "Places" in Nautilus, at least for now. Thumbnails are currently broken (on the Desktop) files
Pictures from our trip to Lake Powell, good times photos

What’s next?

There is a lot of work to be done to converge Unity 8 also on the Desktop. Some of the bigger tasks are:

  • Enable Desktop data providers (scopes)
  • Desktop specific layout & designs
  • Tune the UI for pointer & touch device input
  • Make it a Desktop Shell rather than just an app running in a Shell

More details are and will be captured in the Unity 8 blueprint on launchpad.

Hold my beer… I’d love to help!

As usual, you can find the team in the #ubuntu-unity channel on freenode, on the Ubuntu devel mailing list or at the Unity web pages.

I don’t get it

Yes, you do!

 $> sudo apt-get update
 $> sudo apt-get install unity8 unity8-fake-env unity8-private
 $> unity8
  • MrMiketheripper

    I don’t know Unity just keeps getting worse in my opinion. I’ve found myself moving to Linux Mint personally. 11.04 had the best Unity imo, if they went back to that stability and look I’d jump back on the Ubuntu train in an instant 😛