Ubuntu Edge celebrates new record, but has just six days to raise another £14 million
The Ubuntu Edge smartphone has become the world’s biggest ever fixed crowdfunding campaign after it exceeded the $10,266,845 (£6,563,673) raised by the Pebble smartwatch, but with just six days remaining, it appears unlikely the handset will achieve its ambitious $32 million (£20.5m) target.
Canonical says more than 14,500 Ubuntu Edge smartphones have been pledged for and says that no matter what the outcome of the campaign, it will have raised awareness about Ubuntu Mobile.
The top contributing nations so far are the US and UK, with Germany, Canada, Australia, Netherlands, Sweden, France, Switzerland and Norway completing the top ten.
Ubuntu Edge funding
Canonical has called for supporters to continue spreading the word about the project and has added a new perk for smaller businesses looking to back the Ubutnu Edge, offering ten phones and access to an online workshop for $7,000.
“Whatever happens in the next nine days, the Ubuntu Edge is already making a difference” said Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth. “This campaign lets enthusiast consumers signal their interest to a mobile industry that caters overwhelmingly to the mainstream. It’s making it clear that we’re no longer satisfied with minor updates; we’re looking for true innovation and we’re ready to pay for it. And that message is getting through.
“As they say, the future is already here, it’s just not widely distributed. We’re working to put it in the hands of 40,000 people, to start a revolution. And you’re there at the start.”
In an effort to encourage pledges, Ubuntu lowered the minimum cost of the smartphone last week, explaining that lower component costs meant units could be manufactured more cheaply, while corporate backing from the likes of Bloomberg had allowed it to lower the price.
The Ubuntu Edge will use the best available compontents available at the time of production and is designed to demonstrate demand for Ubuntu Mobile’s converged computing vision and show other manufacturers what is possible with the platform, Canonical has said.
Canonical also says it will not be made if it does not achieve its funding goal, which it told TechWeekEurope was “deliberately ambitious”.
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