Firefox OS Interface as of September 6, 2012

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | September 10, 2012 - 06:02 PM |
Tagged: firefox, Firefox OS

Mozilla has released a demonstration of their mobile operating system, Firefox OS. As much as I like Mozilla and their influence on the PC industry I cannot see much reason for this operating system to exist as it stands right now.

We have reported earlier in the year on Mozilla’s push into the mobile and app store market.

Just last week as of the time of this writing we have been given a video walkthrough of current builds for Firefox OS. This is obviously a very early build of the operating system and we have no idea what the developers have planned for the platform in the future. The only position I can speak from is what I can see right now – and that is what I will do.

There’s also the whole issue of tablets…

The operating system as it currently stands looks like it could very well be a custom skin of Android. It is clear that Mozilla has put a substantial amount of work into the backend just because of how complex a mobile operating system fundamentally is. The interface could be little more than placeholder used to develop the fundamentals.

If not then it is somewhat disappointing to me. Mozilla has always had innovative hooks such as tabs or extensions to disrupt incumbent products. Apart from its legally open nature I do not really see anything yet that would differentiate the platform from its peers. Simply put, it looks like Android – and not even the most recent Android.

Hopefully we will begin to see some of the disruptive force Mozilla is known for as this operating system begins to mature. There just has to be a hook somewhere for it to gain any ground especially when it is this late to the game.

Source: Youtube
September 10, 2012 | 07:21 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

a web browser is not an OS

w8 is going to put an end to all of these mickey mouse operating systems, and I can't wait.

September 10, 2012 | 07:55 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

Even if Microsoft removes the ability to create or run anything outside of their formerly-Metro APIs? As in, if it is not Metro it will not run at all?

September 11, 2012 | 04:40 PM - Posted by Jeremy Hellstrom

Oooo, don't let the Cloud worshippers hear you say that.  Next you willl be claiming that hardware isn't a service!  :P

September 11, 2012 | 06:30 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

that is only on win RT on ARM

September 11, 2012 | 08:26 AM - Posted by Scott Michaud

Actually no... it's Firefox OS running on the Boot2Gecko project which is based on the Linux kernel.

https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Mozilla/Firefox_OS

September 12, 2012 | 12:40 PM - Posted by Mike S. (not verified)

I think all Mozilla is trying to do is push more and more smart phone features into HTML5. As part of creating Firefox OS they're creating open standards for HTML5 interfacing with a gyroscope, accelerometer, phone dialing and phone status, and camera. Plus they're supporting an HTML5 app store.

The goal is to make HTML5 so full of features that your mobile device operating system is irrelevant - iOS, Android, Firefox OS, Windows Phone, Blackberry, WebOS - as long as you have a modern browser, you'll be able to download and use good apps on all of them. If you switch operating system it won't matter, you can bring all of your Firefox OS apps with you.

That destroys vendor lockin of consumpers on the operating system and the vendor lockin of consumers on the app stores.

That's the dream. I don't think it will come true, but the idea is awesome.

September 12, 2012 | 03:32 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

There would still be some lock-in so long as you are forced to repurchase applications across platforms.

If we get to the point that app developers consider a sale on any platform as a sale on every platform -- or app stores become no more than web portals -- then that would be possible.

September 13, 2012 | 10:17 AM - Posted by Mike S. (not verified)

Again, this is all idealistic. I suspect the reality is that it will fail to gain enough adoption from the big players to make a difference.

But if the browsers - Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera, and IE - were truly standards compliant with these new HTML5 features, then app stores really would become web portals, as you said.

September 13, 2012 | 07:36 AM - Posted by iExcellero (not verified)

It is Android. When user navigates to Mozilla's site, it offers Firefox for Android download, so no mistery there ;-)

September 13, 2012 | 08:42 AM - Posted by Scott Michaud

No it's not.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Firefox_OS#Open_web_technologies_stack

It's the Gecko engine on Gonk.

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