Firefox OS Demoed on Handsets, Feels Like a Mobile Browser

It will run web-based apps, should land in early 2013

By on September 7th, 2012 07:33 GMT

Mozilla has been long working on the release of its own mobile operating system, which is based entirely on web technologies, the Firefox OS.

The platform, which started as the Boot2Gecko initiative, is nearing an official release, a move expected for the beginning of the next year.

In the meantime, however, Mozilla is beginning to show to the world some of the latest development advancements it has made with the new OS, including the manner in which it performs on actual devices.

On Thursday, the company showcased working Firefox OS-based devices at its San Francisco office, reiterating plans to have the phones available for purchase in Brazil in 2013.

According to AllThingsD, the platform feels more like a mobile browser, with all applications designed for it being based on the HTML5 Web standard.

Apps and content are not locked within the platform, the way they are on other mobile operating systems out there, which significantly increases the flexibility users can benefit from, the new site notes.

The Firefox OS comes with a simple user interface that reminds people of entry-level smartphones. In fact, the platform itself has been designed to fit cheaper devices, so as to bring the smartphone segment to new price points, making it available for more people.

At the moment, the company is focused on improving the performance of the OS, so as to deliver a fast experience when it comes to basic applications, such as phone dialer and camera.

There will also be a Firefox OS Marketplace to accompany it, with apps and games available for users to enjoy.

Mozilla showcased the operating system on a ZTE developer device, and confirmed that it would include core apps such as email, SMS, calendar, camera and a browser, which is Firefox. Basic programs will be cached, so that they could be used even without a network connection.

Overall, the platform is said to look quite promising, although it won’t have too many applications to offer to its users. After all, it will support only web-based software, and not mobile-specific apps as other OSes out there do today.

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