When Ubuntu first appeared back in 2004 it was focused on the desktop, but since 2011 Mark Shuttleworth and Canonical have been expanding the devices their Linux OS will run on. Ultimately Ubuntu is going to run on phones, tablets, smart TVs, and maybe even your fridge eventually.
For an operating system to run well on so many inherently different devices, the software it ships with needs to adapt based on the interface. A touchscreen phone is very different to that a desktop PC, for example. With that in mind, it makes sense for Canonical to produce software that adapts and works on every targeted platform out the box.
The latest piece of software set to join the Ubuntu ranks is a native, open source email client. It has no name yet, but what we do know is that it's based on the existing open source email client Trojita. Canonical will obviously give it an Ubuntu-friendly update using the Ubuntu UI Toolkit, but also tweak it for use on a phone, tablet, TV etc.
The goal is to offer Ubuntu users the best email experience possible while using the OS on a range of devices. But in order to do that you've got to create a client that's good enough to tempt users away from the already well-established webmail offerings including Gmail, Yahoo!, and Hotmail. That shouldn't be difficult for existing Ubuntu users, but Canonical wants to attract everyone to the Ubuntu platform, not just the Linux crowd.
As Canonical isn't starting from scratch it shouldn't be too long before they have a working Ubuntu email client to test. The images you see here are mock-ups created by Andrea Del Sarto, and hopefully they are close to what the final app will look like.
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