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Firefox Businesses Cellphones Handhelds Mozilla Hardware Technology

Firefox OS Smartphones Launching, But Will Anyone Buy One? 127

Nerval's Lobster writes "Mozilla and its hardware partners have begun launching the first Firefox OS smartphones, starting with Spain's Telefonica releasing the ZTE Open later this week. A lightweight mobile OS based on HTML5, Firefox OS (once known as 'Boot to Gecko') offers a user interface instantly familiar to anyone who's used Google Android or Apple iOS: in addition to home-screens of individual apps arranged on a grid, features include messaging, email, built-in social-networking, maps, and the Firefox Web browser. There's also Firefox Marketplace, an online storefront of HTML5 apps; early apps include Twitter, Facebook, AccuWeather, and a handful of games. But can Firefox OS make any headway in a mobile-device crowded with options? At this February's Mobile World Congress, Mozilla claimed that some 17 operators around the world have committed to the Firefox OS initiative, including China Unicom, Sprint, MegaFon, and the Telecom Italia Group. But many of those operators released rather ambiguous statements about whether they would launch an actual Firefox OS smartphone. Tony Cripps, principal device analyst at Ovum, wrote in a research note earlier this year that 'the real acid test for Firefox OS and its long-term prospects is the quality of the software itself and the user and developer experiences that it fosters.' In other words, Mozilla and its partners need to produce some quality devices, paired with a variety of spectacular apps. Some early reviews of the ZTE Open weren't good, to put it mildly, with The Verge citing: 'unremarkable hardware' and a 'laggy' OS. But that doesn't mean future phones can't go toe-to-toe against anything else on the market, provided Mozilla and its partners provide solid support and marketing."
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Firefox OS Smartphones Launching, But Will Anyone Buy One?

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  • by gl4ss ( 559668 ) on Monday July 01, 2013 @11:16AM (#44154391) Homepage Journal

    I can't follow why this is a good idea for them.

    I like mozilla too! I just haven't liked any of their products or visible personnel for years!

  • I'd buy one (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pr0nbot ( 313417 ) on Monday July 01, 2013 @11:24AM (#44154477)

    I use my phone for talk, text, calendar, alarm, occasional web browsing on the go, random photography, and toilet gaming. I don't need all the exciting social and lifestyle integration that mobile platforms assume you want.

    So I'd certainly go for one, provided (a) there's some affordable, nice-ish hardware (like my Nexus 4), and (b) I'm not beholden to the network operator for software updates.

    Being free of that pervasive "am I happy with Google slurping this?" feeling every time I do anything on my Android phone would be worth it.

  • Thank Mozilla (Score:4, Insightful)

    by tuppe666 ( 904118 ) on Monday July 01, 2013 @11:51AM (#44154825)

    Just what the world needs, another phone OS.

    I assume you are being a sarcastic, but the reality is I am sure it does. Right now the whole market is being given to Android, and although Google is not motivated solely by competition, but your time spent in their services. compitition keeps companies honest(look how Microsoft is treating its *cough* customers) Apple are happy to give the market away again, and look to end with a small but profitable niche player, as it was in its now forgotten PC market, or simply will not exist. Personally I think an OS like this has real opportunity(I am more excited by Sailboat...and to a lesser extent Ubuntu). I hope its not blocked by aggressive actions by Microsoft who simply so not have a serious product.

"An open mind has but one disadvantage: it collects dirt." -- a saying at RPI