Following the release of Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark, Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth announced that Ubuntu 18.04, which would be an LTS release, is going to be called “Bionic Beaver.” While Beaver refers to a large, amphibious rodent with smooth fur and sharp teeth, Bionic is an ode to the robotics and artificial body parts.

We also conducted a little poll on Fossbytes regarding the name. About 80% visitors loved the codename. Others suggested names like Ballsy Baboon, Busy Bee, Bumble Bee, etc. This also brings us to the next step, i.e., exploring what could be the expected features of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. In case you’re running an LTS release and planning to make perform the upgrade to 18.04, things are surely going to be pretty exciting for you.

But, before digging into the features aspect, let’s tell you about the Ubuntu 18.04 release date.

Ubuntu 18.04 Release Schedule:

Canonical has made the Bionic Beaver release schedule public and expected release date isn’t surprising. The first Alpha for opt-in flavors is expected to ship on January 4th, 2018. The final stable release will be available on April 26th, 2018.

  • Alpha 1 Release: 4th January
  • Alpha 2 Release: 1st February
  • Feature Freeze, Debian Import Freeze: 1st March
  • Beta 1 Release: 8th March
  • Final Beta Release: 5th April
  • Final Freeze, Release Candidate: 19th April
  • Final Ubuntu 18.04 release: 26th April

Ubuntu desktop development process is known to follow a strict timeline, so the above dates should turn out to be pretty accurate. Due to some minor hiccups in the development process, a few changes could also be made by Canonical. Still, this gives a pretty solid idea regarding when you should be planning the next Ubuntu release party.

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Features

GNOME 3.28 desktop

In case you haven’t tried Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark, 18.04 LTS is going to be a whole new experience for you. With 17.10, Canonical has already made a shift to GNOME desktop as default with some tweaks. So, for existing LTS users, things are going to be pretty new.

About the GNOME version, we can expect GNOME 3.28 to ship with 18.04.

Kernel 4.15

“Every 6 months the Ubuntu Kernel Team is tasked to pick the kernel to be used in the next release. We look at the Ubuntu release schedule and how that will line up with the upstream kernel releases,” the Ubuntu Kernel Team wrote in a recent post. The team expects that Linux kernel 4.15 will power Ubuntu 18.04.

On a side note, for those who don’t know, Linux 4.14 is going to be the next LTS kernel.

Note: This is a continuously updated article. We’ll be updating it to add new features that are going to be a part of final Ubuntu 18.04 LTS release. Keep reading.