I'm not a marketer thus have very little knowledge about how or why code names are used... but I guess it has something to do with branding. Anyhow, few hours ago, Mark Shuttleworth announced (the founder of Ubuntu OS) the official name for the upcoming 12.04 which will be released in 2012 April (if everything goes according to plan) and it'll be called, Precise Pangolin!.
As always, Mark had something interesting to say about the name (or the creature behind the name actually)...
"Now, I’ve recently spent a few hours tracking a pangolin through the Kalahari. I can vouch for their precision – there wasn’t an ant hill in the valley that he missed. Their scales are a wonder of detail and quite the fashion statement. I can also vouch for their toughness; pangolin’s regularly survive encounters with lions..."Anyway, the 12.04 release has another importance also since it's the "Long Term Support" (a.k.a LTS) which is for those who just can't stand for having to update their OS once every 6 months. So, once every 2 years a LTS version is released which carries no particular differences in packages but will be supported by Ubuntu (updates, bug fixes, etc) up to 3 years for the desktop edition and 5 years for the Ubuntu Sever Edition.
And in somewhat a recent interview, Mark said that they "might" replace Firefox with Google Chrome which could have happened with the 12.04 version but since it's the LTS version ... it won't. But it could be something that'll take place in the 12.10, perhaps.
Anyhow if you're wondering about the official code name for the upcoming Ubuntu 12.04 (both LTS and the standard versions)... then it's Precise Pangolin and it's all about surviving the "lion"!.