Daniel P. Berrange wrote:
Use of RPM is merely a particular historical choice of delivery
and certainly not the defining characteristic of what it means to be the
Fedora distribution. For users consuming the Fedora desktop, the fact that
they're using RPM is hidden away as an implementation detail behind the
apps like GNOME software.
The choice of RPM as opposed to, say, dpkg/deb can be called "historical",
but the concept of delivering packages with dependencies and automatic
dependency resolution is very much a user-visible defining characteristic.
Many Fedora users do not use GNOME Software. Several spins ship Dnfdragora
as their package manager, which is based on DNF and RPM and actually shows
dependencies. There are also many users using the dnf command line directly.
And even the KDE equivalent of GNOME Software, Plasma Discover, now
reportedly shows what dependencies it is going to install when you install a
new package. (I don't know whether GNOME Software itself does that.)
And even if the UI tries to hide the difference, the inherent technical
differences between RPMs and Flatpaks WILL be noticed by the user. Download
sizes, behavior when a library is upgraded, etc.
Upstream still has to choose what base layer(s) they build their
application flatpak on top of, and thus Fedora is a clearly choice there.
Fedora also still provides the infrastructure for building flatpaks,
hosting to distribute and mirror them, review of flatpak image manifests,
quality testing before release, and more. Essentially the things that
Fedora already does for software provided via RPMs, are still beneficial
to at least some extent when using flatpaks.
I think Fedora deserves to be much more than just a runtime that a container
can choose to use within the container.