Upon its announcement alongside the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, Samsung's DeX platform all but seemed promising. Basically a spitting image of Microsoft's Windows Continuum schtick, DeX turns a Galaxy S8 into a desktop experience, complete with full-size apps and a PC-like ecosystem.
But like Windows Continuum, Samsung DeX hasn't really caught on, partly because it requires a $150 DeX dock, and its overall desktop experience feels largely lackluster though decently polished. To put it simply, DeX feels less of "I'm going to buy a Galaxy S8 for this," and more of "this looks cool but I'm probably not going to use it."
Well, that appears to be changing. Samsung has announced that its Galaxy phones and DeX platform are about to face a radical new addition, and it involves Linux.
Samsung DeX To Get Linux Support
Samsung shared details about the Linux on Galaxy app during its developer conference on Oct. 18, and although it's still in a trial phase, it sounds so promising already.
The app, when downloaded on a Samsung Galaxy phone, will enable developers to code in their different Linux distribution while on the go, meaning if they need to test out a function for a software but can't do it on Android, Linux on Galaxy allows them to do just that, and in an entirely native Linux operating system.
But Samsung's real objective is for Linux to complement its DeX platform, enabling developers to code in a much larger display and a more familiar ecosystem, as they would on a regular PC.
"Linux on Galaxy is our innovative solution to bring the Linux experience on PC to mobile, and then further onto a larger display with Samsung DeX," Samsung said in a press release. "Now developers can code using their mobile on-the-go and seamlessly continue the task on a larger display with Samsung DeX."
Linux support for Samsung's DeX platform is still very much a work in progress, but interested users may sign up to receive future updates about the project.
A lot about Samsung's planned implementation of Linux on DeX remains largely unknown at this point, though it's clear that the company wants its DeX platform to be as accessible as possible to developers. But DeX's success doesn't merely depend on accessibility; it needs proper and clever implementations as well. For now, Linux plus DeX sounds like a promising way to revitalize the smartphone's role as a PC alternative, but time will tell if Samsung follows through.
Thoughts? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below!