New Ubuntu Laptop, from Dell, to Head for Developers

by Ostatic Staff - Jul. 19, 2012

Canonical and giant PC maker Dell Computer have already found new horizons for Ubuntu in China in India. The two companies have steadily expanded efforts to deliver Ubuntu-based Dell computers in both countries, which, of course, have giant populations. Now, through an internal innovation challenge at Dell called Project Sputnik, Dell has announced that it will deliver a new, developer-focused laptop based on the Dell XPS 13 with Ubuntu 12.04LTS preloaded, available in select geographies. It's a sign of more commitment to Ubuntu from Dell.

"Project Sputnik is a great example of the employee-driven innovation we built Dell's incubation program to enable," said Nnamdi Orakwue, executive sponsor of the Dell incubation program and executive assistant to Michael Dell, in the announcement. "This project represents the first of many new ideas Dell employees will test with customers or partners through the program, and we look forward to supporting Sputnik to be successful as it becomes a product this fall."

"Since we announced project Sputnik a little over two months ago, we have continued to be amazed by the amount and quality of interest and input we have received," said Barton George, project Sputnik lead and director Dell's web vertical marketing, in the announcement. "By listening to developers, Dell can provide them with solutions and products to help make them more productive and allow for greater innovation."

PC World notes an interesting aspect of the new Ubuntu-loaded Dell laptops:

"The Project Sputnik laptop targets developers with a 'complete client-to-cloud solution,' as Dell describes it. Specifically, software included on the Ubuntu Linux device will allow developers to create 'microclouds' on their laptops, simulating a proper, at-scale environment, and then deploy that environment seamlessly to the cloud."

Dell has reportedly received a huge number of applications for the beta program where the new Ubuntu laptops will be distributed. The company will announce how it will handle all the applications shortly. More on Project Sputnik is available here.