The GNOME desktop environment is one of the most popular user interfaces and application suites available for desktop Linux distributions. A team of developers is now working on bringing GNOME to mobile devices running Linux-based operating systems.
GNOME Shell Mobile provides an easy-to-touch user interface optimized for smartphones and tablets. And while it’s somewhat similar to Android or iOS at first glance, there are some key differences. The GNOME team explained some of them in an article about Recent updates to GNOME Shell on mobile.
Like other modern mobile user interfaces, you interact with the GNOME shell using taps, swipes, and other gesture-based navigation.
What’s different is that Android has three different navigation views: a home screen, an app drawer, and a multitasking view. iOS has two: the home screen and multitasking. But GNOME Shell has a single screen that allows you to view and launch applications and switch between running applications using gestures. No need to wait for a new screen to load.
In short, you can swipe up from the bottom of any screen to view a list of installed apps, thumbnails showing all currently running apps, and a search box. You can tap the app icon to launch a new app, enter a term in the search box to find an app, or swipe between running apps to switch the app running in the foreground.
You can also keep scrolling up to shrink multitasking thumbnails and make more space for app icons. And you can click thumbnail previews up to remove an app from the multitasking section.
Typing in the search box will bring up relevant results including apps and settings.
Other recent updates to GNOME Shell for mobile include an improved keyboard optimized for narrow screens with gesture-based typing support. The keyboard also does a better job of knowing when to show up and when to stay hidden, depending on the activities you’re using the phone for. And the Quick Settings display has been updated to include notifications in the same menu.
GNOME Shell is still very much a work in progress. Some features not yet available, but on the roadmap, include support for emergency calls, haptic feedback, PIN unlocking, and phone calls from the lock screen.
You can find more details, as well as some additional brief explainer videos, In the GNOME Blog. PostmarketOS developers are too Working on adding support for GNOME Shell Linux distribution on their mobile, so you may soon be able to install OS versions on supported phones or other mobile devices with GNOME Shell pre-installed, or install it yourself from the repository.
By the way, GNOME Shell for Mobile is not it Just GNOME-based user interface for mobile devices. purity fuchs The user interface is also built on top of GNOME. It’s the default user interface for the company’s PureOS software that ships on Librem 5 Smartphone, has been Under development for years. Phosh is also available to others Linux distributions for mobile.