back to article First Firefox OS developer phones to launch on Tuesday

Developers who are interested in building apps for the Mozilla Foundation's web standards–based Firefox OS will be able to get their hands on the first handsets running the open source platform beginning on Tuesday. As The Reg has previously reported, the phones will be manufactured by Spanish startup Geeksphone and will be …


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  1. asdf

    golf clap

    Congratulations Firefox OS (and Ubuntu phone) is now at the point Android was in 2005/2006 or so. Better late to the party than never but wow good luck catching up before the current phone form factor becomes obsolete.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: golf clap

      Indeed. I think they've got a better chance than Microsoft to be honest.

      A lot of people just want a basic phone. I notice the Keon does away with the camera. For a lot of people, that would be fine, in some cases, desirable.

      The OS itself needs some work, but it's targetting the very low end of the market. Microsoft and RIM are both trying to tackle the premium end of the market with Apple … let them. For the rest of us that largely want a device that's a phone first, and computer second, having something competing against Android down the bottom end is worth it.

    2. Zola
      Thumb Up

      3rd place is still very much up for grabs

      and I think you'll see the likes of Firefox, Ubuntu and Jolla/Sailfish working together rather than against each other. Even Blackberry could get a look in here, as Ubuntu, Sailfish and Blackberry OS10 are all based on Qt and with more similarities than differences.

      A shared Qt+HTML5 ecosystem/platform could be very compelling for developers, certainly a lot more so than the only other 3rd place contender, Windows Phone, which is a platform dying on its arse.

      I'm especially looking forward to "hybrid" devices, the likes of which you'll not see from Microsoft any time soon, if ever - I'm talking about multi-core and ridiculously powerful smartphones that when docked become fully featured desktop PCs, capable of pretty much everything except power-user processing tasks. None of the new players have the kind of baggage that now prevents Microsoft (and to a lesser extent, Apple and Google) from really innovating on mobile.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 3rd place is still very much up for grabs@Zola

        "I'm especially looking forward to "hybrid" devices, the likes of which you'll not see from Microsoft any time soon, if ever - I'm talking about multi-core and ridiculously powerful smartphones that when docked become fully featured desktop PCs,"

        Actually, MS are the people who seem to be people who recognise this most of all. The launch of W8 and WP8 may have been met with an overwhelming indifference, but MS are trying to integrate their software platform to cover mobes, slabs and PCs, because they know that's the way things are going. I'd be the first to accept that they've not integrated touch and Keyboard + WIMP worlds very well, but who else has even tried? The Asus phonedock is part the way there (although the need for a physical connection seems a bit 1990's), but doesn't give you a KWIMPS environment for serious productivity.

        If MS get W8.1 to play well between touch and KWIMPS, and they can really bring full fat 8.1 to phones (a bit sceptical myself, but you never know), then they really could be on to a winner. Apple would then have to play catch up, Android and BB are left high and dry with no "productivity" credentials. If Unbuntu & Firefox could do something really clever in the same space to integrate OpenOffice and provide that mobile to desktop switching they could perhaps also make the productivity claims, although getting business on board would remain a cultural barrier.

        I'm no Windows fanboi - I think their track record has been outrageously poor on security, their products largely uninnovative, reactionary bloatware, and expensive to boot, with a dismal lack of customer focus. But for the future you describe and which sounds quite convenient, Fat Steve's team appear to be working on giving you what you want. The barrier to this brave new world is of course the age old bogeyman of X86 and backwards compatibility, plus Microsoft's inability or refusal to really programme new software from the ground up, preferring to endlessly put a modest new UI on the same ancient NT code and release it as a new OS. History indicates that 8.1 will be more of the same, and thus MS will give room for others to do what is really required, as ever its own worst enemy?

        1. Zola

          Re: 3rd place is still very much up for grabs@Zola


          In order to innovate on mobile, Microsoft are faced with the challenge of selling low(er) value smartphones that can (in theory at least) capably do the job of more expensive laptops/desktops when docked either as a desktop, or in a tablet/laptop "shell". Admittedly, a decent desktop UI is required, and Windows 8 Metro isn't a decent desktop UI, but scrap Metro on the desktop and Microsoft could be on to a winner at last.

          Although Microsoft are wanton to dump on their historical "partners" right now, I'm not convinced this will continue for the longer term, so unless the low-to-medium spec desktop/laptop/tablet market completely disappears, I don't see Microsoft pushing hybrid smartphones any time soon.

          On the other hand the new players have nothing to lose and everything to gain as they have no history so can target ever market segment and form factor with impunity and bring the kind of innovation that existing players will only baulk at to avoid cannibalising existing product lines and lines of revenue.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. RISC OS

      Re: golf clap

      ... don't worry. In a few years there won't be any ubuntu phones or firefox phones.

      Normal people -, over 90% of teh market aren't interested in buying a phone because of the OS. They buy it because their friends recommend it, they buy it because of what it does, not what drives it, and they want their phones to look and function like before or like they see on their friend's phone.

      Ubuntu will fail because no one but nerds use it, and FireFox will fail because no on is interested in FF except web developers and nerds. Yeah FF may have a huge market share but normal people couldn't care what they use, they use it because it comes with computer (or because somef friend/the company IT admin installed it), and even then if IE is still there they use that... it' not important to most people and most people don't even know what a browser is or what firefox is. They are not going to care if Firefox is the OS of their next phone or go out of their way to buy it, if their phone has it they will use it - till it doesn't work the way their old phone did and then they will take it back to the store.

      There will be loads of this happening with these new mobes

      You might think the girl was an idiot, but even your beloved ubuntu fails with real people who aren't working in IT. The same will happen to the ubuntu phone and FF phones.

      1. keithpeter Silver badge

        Re: golf clap

        "...and FireFox will fail because no on is interested in FF except web developers and nerds."

        This Spanish company is targeting lower end phones (allbeit a developer version). I usually buy whatever is around £100 or so in the shop when I need a new phone. I could buy FF phone without realising it if it was at the right price point. Interesting times if a major carrier take this on.

    5. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: golf clap

      Eww, nasty swelling around the head of your club?

    6. N13L5

      Ubuntu! - waiting for that because....

      Got tired of getting walled in and pushed around by Apple when iPhone 3 was new. now i just go for the best specced Android phone until Ubuntu comes out on high end hardware.

      Sadly, Google is trying to force users into the cloud by removing SD-card slots from all its recent products. But the cloud is not always fast, available or even reliable, unless you never leave your hometown.

      I resent Google for this purely self-serving act.

      For users its rather unhealthy in times of re-emerging fascism pushed on us with the poor excuse of needing to protect us against terrorists, when we really need protection from Banksters, Corporate interests and hijacked governments.

  2. Anonymous Coward


    Where is the information regarding the fair use laws of this mobile? For example, will I have to root a FF mobile, if so that is not in the spirit of FireFox, maybe Mozilla, but not FireFox.

    As far as I can see, this is the last hope for a hacker friendly mobile. Without this to come through for us, we could be doomed. Has everyone forgot about us? Do all mobile manufacturers think we are all about FaceB0rk, YouTube, etc.?

    There is a remaining void that has to yet to be filled for the ones like us. I find it sadly ironic that it was hackers of many generations to get us here, and now we are kicked to the curb to lock in the latest advertisement to "Join FaceBook" and "Listen to iTunes".

  3. Steven Roper

    What I want to know is

    1. Will it be subject to "remote control" by Mozilla, in the same way that Android, iOS and Windows 8 all are by their respective vendors?

    2. Will it "phone home" to Mozilla about everything I do, and build profiles on my surfing and usage habits to sell to advertisers and other exploitative scum?

    3. Will it trap me in a walled garden where the only software I can install is that approved by Mozilla?

    4. Will it require me to sign in to an online account in order to use my device?

    5. Will it force me to use cloud storage over my own local storage?

    6. Will it allow Mozilla to reach into my device and delete or modify apps and content a la Amazon / Google?

    7. Will I be required to sign away my most basic human rights of property ownership in order to be able to use the device?

    8. Will Mozilla require a free-for-all copyright licence to use any content I create with the device as they see fit without credit or renumeration to myself?

    If the answer to all 8 of these questions is "No", then I'm definitely interested. Mozilla, you have a chance to give the middle finger to every fucking greedy corporation on this planet who seem to have forgotten what the words "freedom", "privacy" and "personal ownership" mean. Please don't fuck it up by joining them.

    1. jzlondon

      Re: What I want to know is

      What's with all the bad language?

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        Re: What's with all the bad language?

        It's not a big deal. I personally like a bit of cussing if it adds emphasis, and it's only the last paragraph for fuck's sake....

    2. Andy Fletcher

      Re: What I want to know is

      While I don't disagree, if they can answer "no" to that lot, they'll make zero and the question becomes moot. You don't use anything powered by IOS, Android, Windows presumably?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What I want to know is

        "You don't use anything powered by IOS, Android, Windows presumably?"

        No, it is that we do that makes us notice the lack of ownership. Not to be a dick, but as far as them making $0.00, who has rewired you to make you believe that list is the only way to make money?

        Remember when you owned something you bought...remember 1955?

  4. Bill the Sys Admin

    Nobody watching and listening to your

    Good thing about this OS is you know that its as open as it gets and nobody is tracking your every move a la iPhone and Android. I reckon if they start making some decent handsets in the future i might get one of these. The developer phones look very cool, but i haven’t properly seen the OS.

  5. wemo

    Is anyone asking for this OS or is it a me-too effort? IMO the world doesn't need another OS .. we need services. Make better maps, voice control, incorporate AI, faster connection speeds, more access everywhere (subways, airports, etc...) .. we don't need another OS!

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