The competition in the mobile market can only get stiffer not only because of the major stiff competition between Android and iOS with Blackberry coming behind but with the release of a new OS called Mozilla Firefox OS. I specifically placed it side by side with Android in the title because it is also Open Source. Other than this, I don’t want to draw another comparison. I am leaving that to you after you have completely read this posts which highlights some of the facts you should know about this Mozilla Firefox OS.
It has been reported that the first set of mobile phones to run on Firefox OS will arrive in the first quarter of 2013. Telefonica revealed it will be launching its first device in Brazil sometime in the first quarter of the year.
Here is a photo of a phone running Firefox OS. The Picture was tweeted by Rob Hawkes, Android Evangelist on Wednesday, then retweeted by Mozilla chief technology officer Brendan Eich.
The picture only shows the lock screen of the new OS running on a Samsung phone although the only phone makers that have signed up to make Firefox OS phones so far are ZTE and TCL, the latter of which will market its devices under the Alcatel One Touch brand.
Firefox OS devices are expected to get to the UK and US sometime in the second half of 2013.
Here are the few things you should know about Firefox OS before drawing any comparison:
1. Cheap Firefox OS Powered Phones
Telefonica (who is releasing the fist set of Firefox OS devices) has revealed that its first handset, which will go on sale in Brazil, will come in at sub $100. So, we can expect very affordabe phones running on Firefox OS.
However, Mozilla will in the future look to get the Firefox OS onto mid and high-end handsets, but it’s starting at the bottom. You can start building your premises.
2. Web-based HTML 5
Firefox OS is a HTML 5 web-based browser, which sits on top of Android kernals, with all the features on handsets basically being accessed through a browser – similar to Google’s Chrome OS.
3. Easy porting of applications
Developers are expected to be able to easily port their HTML 5 apps to the Firefox Mobile OS, which apparently will be enormous according to research by Telefonica, owing to the fact thet 75% of Google Play and Apple App Store apps are already written in HTML 5. The implication of this is that as many as 75% of iOS and Android apps may find there way easily to the Firefox OS. I would have said something her but I already promised not to draw any comparison.
4. Deep Social Networking Integration
According to Techradar, Both Facebook and Twitter will be deeply integrated into the Firefox OS such that users can easily post updates, link phone contacts to Facebook profiles and keep up to date with all their friends.
5. Firefox OS is Better Than Android
These are not my words before you castigate me. They are the words of Telefonica’s Chief Executive, Matthew Key. He has claimed that the Firefox OS will offer “a better budget experience than Android”.
6. Desktop Version-Type of Google Maps
Here is one impressive feature that I must mention.
Firefox OS is based on HTML 5, a click of the Google Maps app reveals the desktop version of the mapping software. Just the way it displays completely on your computer.
7. Power of Qualcomm
Mozilla has made an exclusive deal with Qualcomm so all handsets which will run Firefox OS will sport Qualcomm processors.
8. Widget potential
The demo of Firefox OS shown to the world had iPhone-esque homescreens of apps but still Mozilla isn’t ruling out the inclusion of widgets on the mobile platform.
9. It’s Simple, quick and efficient
Firefox OS claims to offer a simple, speedy and efficient user experience at the low end of the market, even on handsets running 600MHz processors. This I think I what every user wants in a phone – speed.
The claim by the Chief Executive of Telefonica has really raised the expectations on the Firefox OS and I think anything below these expectations would spell doom for the OS. Other than that, it should be a great addition to the phone market and consumers can have a variety to choose from.
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