A new Lens in the Unity Dash will poll Amazon to find results relevant to your search terms. And yes, if you click the link and buy the item Ubuntu-maker Canonical gets a small percentage of the income, much like Mozilla makes a bit of money for allowing you to search Google from Firefox. Here’s what the new Lens looks like:
Naturally some Ubuntu users took to the web to voice their outrage at not being consulted over the Amazon Unity Lens was added. The complaints were picked up by the GNU/Linux distro’s daddy Mark Shuttleworth – who had to assure users that their privacy was not being violated, that no one is running advertisements in Ubuntu and Canonical just really wants to help. And make some money as well.
According to Shuttleworth, the Amazon results are not advertisements. They’re simply things that match your search terms. Search for “iPod” and Unity will find any iPod manager apps you might have installed and it may also return some results to buy an Apple iPod from Amazon. If you click through and end up buying a new iPod case or something of the like, Canonical gets a small kickback.
It seems pretty harmless, but it is very different. I’m not aware of another operating system that integrates shopping results at such a low level. Apps yes, OSes no. As with all things radically new, it rubs some people the wrong way – just look at this hilarious bug report. Combine that with the fact that Amazon isn’t a terribly useful first choice for web-based results and you have a perfect little storm for your Ubuntu teacup.
Full Review at Source Web Site: theregister.co.uk