Ubuntu 18.04 official release is scheduled on April 26th 2018.
Ubuntu 17.10 was released in October 2017 and within a span of 6 months, they are releasing their next big update in 18.04. The version numbers of Ubuntu have an interesting trait, where-in 18.04 will be released in the 4th month of 2018, similar to 17.10, which was released in 10th month of 2017.
Ubuntu 18.04 comes with some exciting new feature releases:
Extending support to color emojis
All the previous versions of Ubuntu supported monochrome black and white emojis, which definitely lacked aesthetic appeal.
This update might not be at the top of wishlist for anyone using Ubuntu, but emojis form an integral part of modern communication, and also comparing it to other distros like Fedora, which gained color emoji support long back. With 18.04 release, you can add and view color emojis, anytime, anywhere. The release uses Noto Color emoji font, which can be downloaded from the GitHub page.
Shipping with Linux Kernel 4.15
Ubuntu 18.04 now ships with the slowest Linux kernel ever since 2011 i.e Kernel 4.15. This brings in much-needed Spectre and Meltdown patch fixes for Ubuntu 18.04. Furthermore, it has also added native-support for Raspberry Pi touchscreen, and has a significant performance boost for AMD GPUs.
Unity desktop environment is no longer the default environment anymore, since the release of customized GNOME in Ubuntu 17.10 release. They are planning to continue with it and plotting the latest version of GNOME (3.28) along with 18.04.
Xorg display server
Wayland was introduced as the default display server for Ubuntu along with the 17.10 release. But it has turned out to be an issue as a decent amount of applications were not supported on Wayland. Hence, in the new release Ubuntu is switching back to Xorg display server as the default option and wayland will be provided as an option to the users.
Increase in boot speed
Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, has claimed that Ubuntu 18.04 will have a better boot speed as the systemd’s features will help identifying the bottleneck and solve them as quickly as possible.
New installer for the server edition
Ubuntu was using their debian text-based installer for their server edition but with the 18.04 release, server edition will be using the all new subiquity installer. Checkout the GitHub page for more about subiquity installer.
For minor bug fixes, features and enhancements, refer to the FOSSBYTES blog.