The first public release of JingOS, a new Linux distro designed for tablets, is available to download.
Don’t expect anything too polished at this stage. Devs say the JingOS 0.6 release is “not stable”, far from feature complete, and unsuited for use as a ‘daily driver’, i.e.you should consider it alpha quality software intended for use by early-adopters, willing testers, and canny developers only.
But anyone excited by the emergence of this Ubuntu-based distro and it’s (rather swish looking) Qt/Plasma-based user experience can now indulge in some hands-on experimentation.
The core JingOS desktop, lock screen, and basic control centre are present and working in this alpha build. There’s also a notification hub, task manager, and a handful of bespoke apps created exclusively for JingOS (including a photos app, voice memo tool, and calendar).
A raft of KDE applications come preinstalled in the v0.6 image, including the KDE terminal app Konsole, camera utility, and Dolphin file manager) plus WPS Office and the Chromium browser.
More apps can be installed from the Discover app Store or from the command line, as this demo shows:
Drawbacks? Aside from a tonne of missing features, apps, and UI polish wi-fi set-up is currently manual; and touchpad and touchscreen gestures only work on the Surface Pro 6 and Huawei Matebook 14 at present (two reference platforms for the OS at present).
There’s also no built-in update mechanism, no virtual keyboard, and no JingOS versions of utilities like the system settings tool, file manager, and more. The live image is also a fixed resolution, and only available in English.
But if none of that deters you, read on to learn where to download it.
You can download JingOS 0.6 by… Er, joining the JingOS mailing list. Yeah; this isn’t ideal, but it’s not the most egregious hurdle in the world.
You’ll find more details on this build, a link to the mailing list (required to get a download link), and installation instructions (including “how to” get the
.iso working in VirtualBox) on the JingOS forum.
A stable version of JingOS will apparently be available to download in March. This will arrive just ahead of a planned crowdfunding campaign for an ARM-based tablet that comes preloaded with JingOS.