Mozilla used Samsung handsets when it showed off its web-based mobile operating system, then called Boot to Gecko, at this year's Mobile World Congress. However, the open source foundation today announced via press release that it has partnered with Chinese manufacturers ZTE and TCL corporation for the production of the devices that will run what is now called Firefox OS.
In terms of carriers, Mozilla has linked up with Sprint, Telecom Italia, Telenor, Telefónica, and Deutsche Telekom. When the Firefox OS-powered handset arrives on those carriers it will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. Telefónica will be the first carrier with the handsets, with phones arriving in April, 2013. Mozilla is focusing more on emerging mobile markets.
The Firefox OS started life as the Boot to Gecko project and is a web-based operating system that is entirely based on HTML 5. The OS contains no native apps. Everything—the camera app, the phone dialer, the address book—is based in the web. Everything you see on the homepage are essentially bookmarks that point you to a web-based app. According The Verge, when your phone goes offline, users will be able to receive and make phone calls as well as receive and send text messages. All other apps will need to store data locally on the handset in order to be used when no data connection is available.
We don't think the market can support another major mobile OS, but we're glad to see Mozilla keeping true open source alive.
[via The Verge]