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Mozilla Operating Systems Firefox

Firefox OS 1.1 Released, Mozilla Prepares For 2nd Round of Device Launches 76

Posted by Soulskill
from the onward-and-upward dept.
SmartAboutThings writes "Mozilla has officially introduced the first update to its mobile Firefox OS. The very first update to Firefox OS adds some important new features, performance improvements and additional language support. Some of the most important changes include MMS support, Push Notifications API, Contact Management enhancements, Firefox browser downloads, Keyboard improvements and much more. In a separate announcement, Mozilla also said that new launches of Firefox OS smartphones will begin soon with more devices and in more markets around the world."
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Firefox OS 1.1 Released, Mozilla Prepares For 2nd Round of Device Launches

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  • Great device (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I have a Firefox OS device. It's very cool and it's nice to have alternatives to android and apple.

    • I like the fact that developing apps for it uses only Web technologies. Every other mobile platform suffers from NIH syndrome:
      • Java that's incompatible with Java for Android
      • Objective-C (seriously, what?) for iPhone
      • Ubuntu Phone can't even decide on a single technology (QML or HTML5)
      • and Windows Phone is even worse with a baffling array of JScript, C++, C# and VB.NET

      At least with Firefox OS you stand a reasonable chance of being able to reuse some of your code in your web project as well as your mobile proje

      • Windows Phone is even worse with a baffling array of JScript, C++, C# and VB.NET

        WP8 supports apps developed entirely in HTML5/JS.

      • by Wootery (1087023)

        Sounds to me like Ubuntu Phone, Windows Phone, and Firefox OS are all using web technologies in their 'native' toolkits.

        What makes Firefox OS any different, such that you stand a reasonable chance of being able to reuse some of your code in your web project only with Firefox OS?

        • Well, Firefox OS is the only one only using Web technologies. With the other two, you might have been using one of the other options for any number of reasons, like for instance that C++ was faster, or your boss thought that JavaScript was a toy language, or that the API you actually needed for the app was missing in the web app version, and then that cut you out of reuse.

          What would be even better is if all these manufacturers got together and worked out a common API. Then developers wouldn't have to write

          • by Wootery (1087023)

            What would be even better is if all these manufacturers got together and worked out a common API. Then developers wouldn't have to write a different app for each device. It can't really be that hard.

            Web standards tend to be out-paced by tectonic plates, but I'm sure we'll see one for 'native app' development eventually.

            I haven't looked at the Firefox OS APIs, but I imagine the existing web standards (HTML5) cover most of what a developer could want, at least in theory.

          • by exomondo (1725132)

            Well, Firefox OS is the only one only using Web technologies.

            How can you possibly pretend that limiting the application development to those specific technologies is a good thing?

            With the other two, you might have been using one of the other options for any number of reasons, like for instance that C++ was faster, or your boss thought that JavaScript was a toy language, or that the API you actually needed for the app was missing in the web app version, and then that cut you out of reuse.

            Like you said, you might have been using other options for any number of reasons and the ability to do that and not be restricted to a niche set of technologies is a good thing.

            • How can you possibly pretend that limiting the application development to those specific technologies is a good thing?

              Because that is the only way to forge a standard.

              • by exomondo (1725132)

                Because that is the only way to forge a standard.

                What 'standard'?

                • The hypothetical one I am describing that would unify software development for the mobile platform.
                  • by exomondo (1725132)
                    When you say for the 'mobile platform' you mean for FirefoxOS?
                    • I mean for Firefox OS, Ubuntu Phone, Android, Windows Phone, iOS, and any other or future platforms for tablets, phones, wearable computing, and other mobile devices.
                    • By the way, do you have multiple accounts with a little bot army that just goes round modding up your comments? Because they don't really seem particularly insightful to me.
                    • by exomondo (1725132)
                      What's would be the point of that? We can already do that with web applications if we want cross-platform support. Then for places where native code is more suitable we can develop native apps. Removing the ability to do native code and limiting it to only web applications is just restrictive silliness.
                    • by exomondo (1725132)
                      They're modded '1', the default moderation when posting from a registered account, the same as yours. Is that such a hard concept to grasp?
  • No new major version? From a Firefox branded product?

    Who's the target audience here, if Android is for the customization crowd and Apple is for the just-works crowd?

    • by BZ (40346)

      The target audience is people who don't have a smartphone yet, most probably because they can't afford to pay for a $500 phone. Which is most people in the world, so far.

      • by gmuslera (3436)
        Probably could include also the people that worries about their own privacy. While is not failsafe, is better than most commonly used alternatives (cyanogenmod+fdroid, ubuntu touch, and maybe tizen could be others)
      • by CRCulver (715279)

        The target audience is people who don't have a smartphone yet, most probably because they can't afford to pay for a $500 phone. Which is most people in the world, so far.

        Low-spec Android phones are available for less than $100 now in the developing world, so again, it's not clear what niche Firefox OS is filling here.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          A platform so open you can create apps from inside a webpage using drag'n'drop [youtube.com]

        • by BZ (40346)

          FirefoxOS performs a lot better on devices at that price point than Android does.

          • by puto (533470)
            Sorry, But I just brought six Motorola Defys running android to my six sister in laws in Colombia, all running Angry birds and Whats app. They have five megapixel cameras, military spec, and I paid sixty bucks for each one and I just got a call from one sister in law asking me if I could bring ten more down to sell because everyone loves them. You can also get the Nokia Asha, which they love all over South America. My next round of phones to bring down are Samsung Galaxy S2s which I can get for 150 near
            • by exomondo (1725132)
              That in itself doesn't disprove GP's post, however I have certainly seen the assertion a few times that FFOS outperforms Android on lowend devices yet not really seen any proof to back that up, and certainly not anything to prove that it outperforms it in any significant measurable way. Android seems to perform adequately on lowend devices - as your anecdote suggests - so unless FFOS is significantly faster and more efficient it isn't worth throwing away support for the entire Android app catalog.
    • by MightyYar (622222)

      Just works, but cheap?

    • It sounds like you're asking if its open or closed. its open. Marketing is rather limited in many markets, so it remains to be seen what argument they have for it, other than "firefox! now for your phone".

  • by WiiVault (1039946) on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @05:08PM (#45085667)
    Not trying to troll or anything, but despite a casual interest in Mozilla and mobile OS's and being an avid desktop FF user I had no clue it was out of beta. No doubt I missed a post or two, but considering I use FF Mozilla's top product and am often sent to their site to report bugs I really think they should fire their marketing people. Breaking into mobile is hard. If a guy who has been using FF since it was still called Phoenix isn't aware you put out a final product I would venture to guess the people who just stopped clicking the big blue E on their desktop are not likely to be coming out in droves. Something has gone seriously wrong at Mozilla over the last few years and this is just another example.
    • by BZ (40346)

      Are you in a market where it's available in stores? The marketing has mostly focused on those markets, obviously.

      That said, the launch was covered on Slashdot back in July: http://mobile.slashdot.org/story/13/07/09/1414232/mozilla-launches-firefox-os-devices-in-stores-opens-up-app-payments [slashdot.org] and several other articles, as well as other tech press. No non-tech-focused marketing in the US so far, since it's not like you can buy one of these in a store in the US right now...

      • I live in south america and haven't heard a word about it being out of beta. Where ARE they marketing it?

        • by BZ (40346)

          As far as I know, in Colombia, Venezuela, Spain, Poland, so far.

    • by 4wdloop (1031398) on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @05:34PM (#45085925)

      I just found out you can buy a FF OS Phone for $80 on eBay (for development I suppose)

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/281165818989 [ebay.com]

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by steelfood (895457)

      The answer is simple: It's not ready. I mean, it's probably ready for release as production software, but as a phone OS, it doesn't appear to be ready to be exposed to the majority of the world. For example, 1.1 just got MMS capabilities. Based on just this alone, 1.0 would have just been laughed out of the market.

      Their current target, I suspect, are enthusiasts and very, very early adopters. It's the people who don't really care that their phone is missing half of the basic features found on other phones.

      • by narcc (412956)

        For example, 1.1 just got MMS capabilities. Based on just this alone, 1.0 would have just been laughed out of the market.

        Funny, the first iPhone didn't support MMS and it manged to survive.

        I expect you'll see them ramp up their marketing efforts as the software becomes more feature-complete. Until then, it's just not ready for end users.

        They made how many for the first go round again? Something like 1000 that they only sold through eBay? I'm going to guess that they don't think it's ready for end users either.

        • The first iPhone also wasn't competing against three other smartphone platforms.
          • by narcc (412956)

            Nonsense, of course it was.

          • by Wing_Zero (692394)
            so PalmOS, BackBerry, Windows CE or Symbian don't count as smartphone OS's?
            • by Anonymous Coward

              Of course not, duh. Everyone knows that the iPhone was the first smartphone. Apple invented the market, and everyone else are just riding on their coat tails.

          • by exomondo (1725132)

            The first iPhone also wasn't competing against three other smartphone platforms.

            Sure it was, Symbian, Windows Mobile, PalmOS and Blackberry (at least they were the major ones). iOS was a disruptive product and that's why it has succeeded, FFOS (and Ubuntu Phone, Windows Phone, Maemo, Meego, webOS, etc...) is not, it's only distinguishing feature is its supposed performance on lowend hardware.

            Desktop linux distros made a similar play for the PC market and failed due to not being disruptive products and they even had more in their favor than just higher performance on lowend hardware, th

      • I expect you'll see them ramp up their marketing efforts as the software becomes more feature-complete. Until then, it's just not ready for end users.

        Thats sounds like a page straight out of the ol' MS playbook.

    • by Billly Gates (198444) on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @08:09PM (#45087197) Journal

      Another issue is we have IE 6 back again in style.

      Its name this decade is called webkit. [pcmag.com]. If the web server detects it is a mobile device it outputs Webkit specific (chrome/Safari) CSS that is not W3C compliant.

      Complain and the answer is webkit owns 95% of the market so go fsck yourself and buy a droid or iphone like everyone else. Kind of like we do not support Netscape anymore in 2003 even though you used Konsqueror or Firefox .4.

      Drives me nuts to see the same developers who praise webkit and use non W3C compliant html5test.com to base their opinions then go out and bash IE 6 and who write code on the mobile end that wont work Windows Phone/Windows 8 either.

  • how the update story is contracted to work and for how long. And is there a contingency for if the manufacturer stops wanting to update the phone?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @05:22PM (#45085807)

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  • Mozilla is making the same mistake as Apple did when iPhone first came out.
  • by FuzzNugget (2840687) on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @05:38PM (#45085981)
    I figured they'd be on version 47 by now.
  • by excelsior_gr (969383) on Wednesday October 09, 2013 @05:39PM (#45085983)

    Firefox OS is nice, but what it really needs is a good web browser.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Firefox OS is nice, but what it really needs is a good web browser.

      You joke, but it's true...

      The one thing stopping me moving purely to the ZTE Open as my primary device is the poor web browsing experience (okay, and the keyboard isn't amazing...)

      • You have lazy fucking ass web developers who write proprietary non W3C compliant -webkit code [pcmag.com] to thank. Probably the same ones who bash IE 6 for doing the same and made MS specific CSS back in the day too.

        If the web server detects mobile it outputs only webkit CSS as webkit owns 95% of the market so why support anything else?

        I am tempted to switch to Firefox from Chrome as I feel I am part of the problem and would be what hte world will look like in the future if Chrome won. Just like 2003 when you received

    • by Anonymous Coward

      And when you are done watching their video also check out both of their WebRTC videos:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-94ie_79Zn4
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqGCYoYvrOg

  • Firefox OS's US debut was on the ZTE Open (I think some are still available, $80 USD phone too!). However it's not free software friendly in that last I checked (in the past month) nobody had figured out how to compile the OS from scratch for this phone. Not the ZTE release code nor the Mozilla code. If this is going to be a useful project this stuff needs to work. They should be avoiding phones that have non-free drivers/firmware too. While I understand the OS is 100% free (which is an improvement) the pho

  • Do we know if they plan to make this available on tablets? How about running it on Apple hardware? I have an older Samsung Galaxy Tab and iPhone 3GS that would be perfect for trying this out.

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