Samsung’s Support for Linux on DeX Fizzles | Developers
By Jack M. Germain
Oct 22, 2019 nine:45 AM PT
Samsung has known as quits on its effort to supply a complete Linux desktop platform for Android.
In an e mail to beta testers remaining week, Samsung mentioned it will no longer enhance its Linux on DeX beta program for long run working gadget and instrument releases.
Samsung’s announcement coincides with Google’s unencumber of the Android 10 OS replace and its rollout on Samsung telephones. Neither corporate will supply Linux on DeX enhance.
Linux on DeX lets in customers to glue smartphones or pills to screens to simulate a complete Linux desktop computing revel in. Samsung to begin with introduced DeX as a docking station for telephones. It then allowed customers to glue their Android telephones to screens by the use of a USB-C cable.
Samsung didn’t supply main points on what resulted in the verdict to offload DeX enhance however an advisory knowledgeable customers that DeX is probably not supported in Android 10 beta. Samsung telephone customers won’t be able to accomplish a model rollback to Android Pie.
“Given the company’s reported money woes related to problems in its memory division, I expect the decision to drop Linux on DeX was motivated by financial concerns,” mentioned Charles King, major analyst at Pund-IT.
The identify “DeX” is a contraction of “Desktop eXperience.” The Linux on DeX beta program used to be practical, nevertheless it it appears didn’t development as Samsung was hoping. The corporate by no means launched a strong device model sooner than pulling the plug on DeX’s building.
Only make a selection Samsung telephones had been a part of the beta program. First integrated had been Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8+ gadgets. DeX later turned into to be had for Galaxy S9 and S10 telephones, in addition to Galaxy Note telephones.
A tool working DeX functioned as a docking station. Users positioned the telephone within the docking cradle to glue a keyboard, mouse and track. The DeX docking station allowed customers to run their telephone’s working gadget as an Android private pc.
Samsung and Canonical remaining 12 months partnered on an app that allowed make a selection Galaxy telephones to run a complete Linux desktop on most sensible of Android. The corporate began a personal beta for the Linux on DeX challenge remaining November. The personal beta allowed Linux to open in make a selection Galaxy gadgets in DeX mode.
“While Linux on DeX was an intriguing solution, the number of customers affected by the project’s cancellation is likely fairly modest,” King instructed LinuxInsider.
A Goal Beyond Reach?
Of larger significance is why Samsung retreated from its purpose, in step with Thomas Hatch, CTO of
“The idea of having a single device to use as a laptop and as a phone is not new. It has been touted as a Holy Grail by many in the phone and laptop communities. It also promises that phone manufacturers could dip into the laptop market,” he instructed LinuxInsider.
The issues builders wish to triumph over to reach this, despite the fact that, don’t seem to be trivial, Hatch mentioned. Being in a position to merge makes use of throughout those chasms has lengthy been a problem.
“Look at how difficult it was to make desktop environments that span desktops and tablets,” he identified. “It also forces the question, hasn’t Google already solved this with cloud services?”
What we’d like to bear in mind about era is that excellent tech satisfies actual human wishes and alleviates actual human ache. That ends up in two other paths, Hatch steered.
Is the true resolution not to have to hold round a computer? Or is it to have all information unified throughout gadgets?
“I think that Samsung stepping back here means that they see the problem that DeX is trying to solve as the unification of assets rather than not having to carry a laptop,” Hatch noticed.
Alternatives to Ponder
Samsung telephone customers and homeowners of alternative telephone fashions taken with working Linux on their Android telephones can discover a number of choices, Pund-IT’s King steered.
Maru is a context-aware, light-weight open working gadget that unites cellular and desktop computing. Maru is founded on Debian Linux however isn’t suitable with all Android telephone fashions. Maru mechanically detects when an exterior show is to be had and connects keyboard and mouse by the use of Bluetooth.
Termux is an Android terminal emulator and Linux atmosphere utility that works at once and not using a rooting or setup required. The Android app installs a minimum Linux base gadget mechanically. You can upload extra applications the use of the APT package deal supervisor. A terminal emulator is a program that gives a text-based interface to the shell.
UserLand is an open supply Android app that lets you run a number of Linux distributions like Ubuntu, Debian and Kali with out rooting your instrument.
Linux Deploy is an Android app that gives slightly fast and simple set up of the GNU/Linux working gadget on an Android instrument. The utility calls for a rooted telephone.