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Telefonica Shows Prototype Firefox OS Phone 91

Posted by Soulskill
from the how-much-memory-does-it-have dept.
judgecorp writes "Telefonica has added some detail to the Firefox OS picture, following the announcement of phones by two manufacturers earlier this week. The Qualcomm-built handset shown by Telefonica in London ran the HTML5 OS and showed multitasking as well as a range of HTML5 applications. Firefox-maker Mozilla receives a lot of funding from Google, but Telefonica sees Firefox OS as a way to achieve independence from Google. It will be more open than Android, and will run on lower-specification hardware, according to the company's director of products." A common reaction to Firefox OS over the past few days has been to say that it's doomed from the start. But Mozilla's stated goals are to 'promote openness, innovation, and opportunity on the Web for users and developers,' rather than to compete with Android and iOS. What do you think they need to do in order to achieve that in a meaningful way?
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Telefonica Shows Prototype Firefox OS Phone

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  • Re:Need a niche (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jeffmeden (135043) on Friday July 06, 2012 @12:46PM (#40565547) Homepage Journal

    I'm not sure it's all so doom and gloom like TFA suggests. Telefonica needs a niche, or a gimmick, and this might be the right choice. At the very least, it might be enough to make a respectable ROI before the curtain closes. And, yes, it's fledgling, and being the first on the bandwagon would work out really well if the bandwagon (metaphorically) becomes a limousine.

    It's doom and gloom since product complexity in the mobile space creeps in SO fast you won't even know what hit you. A phone running nothing more than a lightweight browser which supports HTML5 seems great, it would be fast at browsing and it would basically "do" anything the web site was coded to do... until you ask "where are the contacts stored?" or "why won't my bluetooth headset stay paired?" and then it all goes to shit because all of the developers time is spent dealing with corner cases that each affect 500,000 users (after all, money isnt made in the mobile space until you have a few hundred million phones out there).

    So basically you need to put your cards on the table: Do you go the route of Apple and publish a very polished OS that lacks some very basic features for the first few years until you get your legs under you? Or, do you do things the Google way, and kitchen sink the hell out of your OS with so much whizbang crap that it all crumbles apart between versions?

  • by DrgnDancer (137700) on Friday July 06, 2012 @01:39PM (#40566289) Homepage

    There's one serious difference that Firefox will have to overcome in the Phone world that never bothered them in the Browser world. Install base. In teh Browser world, people saw the Firefox browser and they liked it. So they downloaded it and used it. Phone OS's aren't like that. i have to find ad buy a phone that has the OS on it. If the Mozilla foundation can't find partners, or if those partners put their OS on inferior handsets, it won't matter how good the OS is. This was on of Android's problem in the beginning. The phones were crap, so it didn't matter how good the OS was. It's still a lesser problem now, to some extent the whole ecosystem gets tarred by the brush of the cheaper models.

  • by acid06 (917409) on Friday July 06, 2012 @02:25PM (#40567075)

    Brazil has a 200+ million headset market, roughly split equally between 4 major carriers (Vivo, Oi, TIM and Claro). This phone doesn't need to be the iPhone or Android killer - it just needs to be cheap and useful. I

    f they're able to get 10% of Vivo's market share, it's a success - I mean, 5 million phones in Brazil alone meanss a lot of phones. I suppose other emerging markets would also have such similar characteristics, so a successful launch here in Brazil would pave the way for rolling this out to other South American countries and then, later, to other Asian emerging markets.

    An current-gen iPhone here costs US$1000. If they're able to bring something that has good usability at a local US$200 price-point, they'll sell a lot of headsets, since the Android phones you can get here in Brazil in the US$200 are only fake Chinese crap (lower-end from Samsung start at US$250-300).

Simplicity does not precede complexity, but follows it.

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