Apple has long dominated the tablet space, but that hasn’t stopped companies from releasing hundreds of Android, Windows, or Chrome OS tablets in recent years. The JingPad A1 was supposed to be something different: it shipped with JingOS, a Linux-based operating system optimized for touchscreen input but capable of running full-fledged desktop apps.

At least that was the idea. But when Jingling, the company behind the tablet, began shipping units to customers last year, many found the software to too buggy for the general public and not as open as Linux enthusiasts would like. Eventually the company ran out of money, laid off staff, and did provide a way to replace the operating system with Android or something else (like Ubuntu Touch). While Liliputing has covered the rise and fall of Jingling, but we never actually got to spend any time with the JingPad A1 tablet itself. Now TechHut has put together a video documenting the highs and lows… with some hands-on demonstrations of wha the tablet could and could not do.

Here’s a roundup of recent tech news from around the web.

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  1. To be fair, it was the community that failed Jingling!!

    After a decade of no activity, we finally had a company step up to the challenge. To try to bring Linux to the mainstream. What that requires is: good hardware, decent processor, decent value, and a good user experience.

    From what I understand, Jingling accomplished this. Sure it wasn’t an iPad-killer, or even a Galaxy Tab killer. But those products come from multi-billion dollar corporations, with at least a decade of experience.

    All the frustrations I’ve heard in that video, weren’t actual dealbreakers. They simply needed the developers come together, and improve upon the foundations they provided. That didn’t happen, it hardly does, and instead the device slipped into obscurity. Now with the company deciding to close the project, people cry foul.

    At least one Linux project (finally) made it to the mainstream. SteamOS on the SteamDeck. And +95% of the efforts come from Valve themselves. So it seems the Linux Developer Community is not what it was a decade ago, and they only back projects that are mostly done or are easy. I’ve noticed a similar trend for Custom Roms when it comes to Android phones. While I am happy with SteamOS, I just wished we had something as good or better, on the ARM platform.

    1. “The community” isn’t something that just descends from the heavens to fix things for you for free (or paying $600 for the privilege to do so), nor is there a universal shared goal to “make linux go mainstream”. I’m not even sure jingling had that goal. You have to give them some kind of incentive, and I really get the impression that jingling did a very bad job of that.

      You might not think there are a lot of Linux tablets around, but in reality you can take just about any x86 convertible laptop, even chromebooks, and put common distros on it, which has a much lower barrier for entry and more things work.

  2. I thought, at quick glance, the video was a video-version of your tech round-up. I have to admit, I was pretty excited by the idea. Still, very impressed that you do such a good job on this site, and I depend on it daily. Thanks for all you do.