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Once upon a time a group of developers working on the open source KDE Plasma Active desktop environment for mobile devices figured it’d be cool if there was a tablet designed specifically to run the software. So they tried to find a device maker to offer truly open hardware with no proprietary components. It would be called the Vivaldi tablet.

That was hard… and every time it looked like things were moving in the right direction the project suffered setbacks.

After two years of development, the Vivaldi tablet project was canceled earlier this month. If you’ve been wondering what exactly went wrong, the folks at LWN have put together a great summary with plenty of commentary from project leader Aaron Seigo. (via reddit)

vivaldi tablet

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3 replies on “Lilbits (7-29-2014): Why the Vivaldi open source tablet failed”

  1. I’m surprised that there are basically no tablets running one of the popular Linux distributions. Canonical seemed like it wanted to do it, but I haven’t seen anything from them lately. I’ve seen Linux based OSes move toward being tablet friendly, but no real push to make it really happen. Perhaps the existence of Android has satisfied people’s hunger for Linux since Android is open source.

    1. Any new mobile OS would have to offer something compelling over and above Android and its open source variants, otherwise, what’s the point? Linux distros on the client are still very much a niche market.

  2. The headline “Google begins shipping Android TV developer kits to… developers” makes that sound like a bad thing. No early dev access means fewer apps on launch.

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