Getting started with Ubuntu for phones on 12.04

What exciting news! Ubuntu is coming to phones in the near future, and they are already pushing forward for developers to get started on apps for the upcoming OS. The really great part? It is actually Ubuntu running on the phone, so making apps will be pretty much like making applications for Ubuntu on the desktop. Even better? They have chosen Qt and QML as first-class citizens for app-development together with HTML5.

Since I’ve been developing Nanoparticles and Journey Planner for Norway in Qt and QML from before, I’m very excited to again have a platform where these toolkits are at home. With Qt working on Android and the upcoming Sailfish too, it is finally becoming more platform independent in the mobile world as well as on the desktop, where both Windows, Mac and Linux are already well-supported.

The mobile team at Canonical (the guys behind Ubuntu) have already put up a few pages to help us get started with development. You find them here. At first glance they seem pretty useful and easy to grasp, so I look forward to delving deeper into them.

A tiny speed bump kept me from getting started

However, I was faced with a problem when trying to start out going through the steps, and that is the PPA for the QML examples and componants is missing packages for Ubuntu 12.04, which I’m currently running. This lead to the following error messages upon doing “apt-get update”:

W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/ui-toolkit/ppa/ubuntu/dists/precise/main/source/Sources  404  Not Found
W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/ui-toolkit/ppa/ubuntu/dists/precise/main/binary-amd64/Packages  404  Not Found
W: Failed to fetch http://ppa.launchpad.net/ui-toolkit/ppa/ubuntu/dists/precise/main/binary-i386/Packages  404  Not Found

I figured these packages are likely not really dependent on anything special in Ubuntu 12.10 that is not already in 12.04, so getting around this problem was as easy as to go to the Launchpad PPA directory and download the packages directly: UI Toolkit PPA

After doing this, I’m now ready to get started with the rest of the tutorials.

Enjoy!