‘Linux on Galaxy’ App will run any Linux Distro on Samsung Galaxy smartphone using Samsung’s DeX dock
The convergence of a smartphone with a PC/laptop is not new and has been in making for several years. In fact, the idea of such a convergence started with Nokia’s Communicator phone launched in 1996 when it was the undisputed king of feature phone and mobile phone arena.
Ubuntu devs tried a similar theme with the now-dead Ubuntu for smartphones and tablets. The Ubuntu os was launched with the idea to run full Linux apps on your smartphone. The smartphone even gave users an option to connect a keyboard, mouse, and display. However, that did not sell.
However, the idea still fascinates smartphone makers and users alike to have an all in one device which will be a laptop or PC cum smartphone. An Android tablet is often seen as a starting step for this convergence. The latest attempt was made by Samsung of Korea. The multibillion-dollar company has been toying with the idea of all in one smartphone. In fact, it also supported an alternative operating system called Tizen which now powers its Smart TVs, refrigerators and washing machines.
During the launch of its flagship Samsung Galaxy S8 Android smartphone, Samsung also quietly introduced a new tool called DeX dock. The DeX dock allows users to connect their Samsung smartphones to any TV using a PC interface or HDMI cable. The $150 found few takers and it seemed that Samsung’s DeX dock will die a natural death like Nokia communicator and Ubuntu smartphones.
However, now there are signs that there is much more to DeX dock. Samsung has developed an App called “Linux on Galaxy.” Linux of Galaxy App lets you run any Linux distro on your Samsung Galaxy S8 or Note 8 for now. And this is where Samsung’s DeX dock comes in. You can get the full-fledged Linux experience on your TV or external display using Linux on Galaxy App on your Samsung Galaxy S8.
The idea is simple, install Linux on Galaxy App on your Samsung Galaxy S8, run your favorite distro on it, connect it to DeX doc and you don’t need a PC/laptop anymore. This will further be complemented by connecting a mouse and keyboard and you’ll be able to use any Linux desktop app on your Galaxy S8 or Galaxy Note 8.
Samsung in an announcement said, “Now developers can code using their mobiles on-the-go and seamlessly continue the task on a larger display with Samsung DeX,”.
As per Samsung’s statement, Linux On Galaxy will allow you to run multiple Linux distros like Ubuntu or Debian and work in a Linux OS environment on your Samsung Galaxy Note 8 or Galaxy S8 smartphone. Samsung also said that it is working on Linux on Galaxy App so that it supports every Samsung smartphone.
Samsung says that Linux on Galaxy is still in development, but you can sign up for notifications of availability here. If this works as well as Samsung claims, it could make DeX a far more interesting product, and even more of a desktop-replacement for some users.
While we can’t yet say that PC/laptops are dead and smartphone laptops are the future, Samsung’s Linux on Galaxy and DeX dock are a step in this direction. Waning PC and laptop sales figures and booming smartphone sales figure point out to the fact that smartphones now have far wider reach than ever before. Maybe by 2020, we will be in an era where our smartphone is our laptop/PC and we don’t need to carry those bulky laptops or store those bulky PCs anymore.
Are you excited to know about Samsung’s efforts to bring Linux on your smartphone? Do share your views.