Ubuntu to run on ARM-based netbooks

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ARM-based processors have traditionally been used in small devices such as mobile phones, but the technology is soon be used in low-cost notebook PCs – otherwise known as netbooks – hoping to give Intel a run for its money. In line with this strategy, ARM has announced that it will be collaborating with Canonical to bring the full Ubuntu desktop OS to the ARMv7 processor architecture.

Canonical offered few details about the new ARM distribution except to say that the ARMv7 port of Ubuntu will target netbooks and system-on-chips (SoC) based on ARM’s Cortex-A processor cores. The companies believe that combining Ubuntu with ARM’s low power demands will make them a force to be reckoned with in the fast growing mobile computing market, and are aiming to provide “not only high performance but all-day battery life and advanced video functionality.”

The Ubuntu ARM netbooks are scheduled to begin shipping in April of 2009. Their biggest problem, it seems, is that Intel and Microsoft have already taken the lead and the signs suggest they’ll continue to dominate the netbook market.

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