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Firefox OS Smartphones Launching, But Will Anyone Buy One?

samzenpus posted about 9 months ago | from the making-the-call dept.

Firefox 127

Nerval's Lobster writes "Mozilla and its hardware partners have begun launching the first Firefox OS smartphones, starting with Spain's Telefonica releasing the ZTE Open later this week. A lightweight mobile OS based on HTML5, Firefox OS (once known as 'Boot to Gecko') offers a user interface instantly familiar to anyone who's used Google Android or Apple iOS: in addition to home-screens of individual apps arranged on a grid, features include messaging, email, built-in social-networking, maps, and the Firefox Web browser. There's also Firefox Marketplace, an online storefront of HTML5 apps; early apps include Twitter, Facebook, AccuWeather, and a handful of games. But can Firefox OS make any headway in a mobile-device crowded with options? At this February's Mobile World Congress, Mozilla claimed that some 17 operators around the world have committed to the Firefox OS initiative, including China Unicom, Sprint, MegaFon, and the Telecom Italia Group. But many of those operators released rather ambiguous statements about whether they would launch an actual Firefox OS smartphone. Tony Cripps, principal device analyst at Ovum, wrote in a research note earlier this year that 'the real acid test for Firefox OS and its long-term prospects is the quality of the software itself and the user and developer experiences that it fosters.' In other words, Mozilla and its partners need to produce some quality devices, paired with a variety of spectacular apps. Some early reviews of the ZTE Open weren't good, to put it mildly, with The Verge citing: 'unremarkable hardware' and a 'laggy' OS. But that doesn't mean future phones can't go toe-to-toe against anything else on the market, provided Mozilla and its partners provide solid support and marketing."

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127 comments

Yes, but.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154331)

Yes, but can it run crysis at max?

Re:Yes, but.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154445)

Hey America guess what? If you don't eat like a lardass and avoid exercise like a lardass, you won't become a lardass!! Wow! What a concept. Isn't that right you disgusting fatbodies?

Choke Yourself (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155611)

Don't pull my fucking hand over there! I said choke yourself; now lean forward and choke yourself!

I really like Mozilla but (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154355)

I can't follow why this is a good idea for them.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (4, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 months ago | (#44154391)

I can't follow why this is a good idea for them.

I like mozilla too! I just haven't liked any of their products or visible personnel for years!

Re:I really like Mozilla but (2)

i kan reed (749298) | about 9 months ago | (#44154639)

I think they'll become likable again when all their google-money dries up, and the corporate types start bailing, and it becomes a hobby maintained technology again.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155263)

i really like my iphone, so i can't imagine switching. unless the phone was compatible with the apple ecosystem? call me a fanboi if you must, but that's how I feel. also the phone should have the same cashe.

Re: I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157393)

Cashew nuts?

Re:I really like Mozilla but (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44159721)

You're a fanboi. People who have an all Apple "ecosystem" are invariably douchebags.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44156765)

I'd start to like them again if they'd properly resolve the 8 year old complaint that FireFox is trying to be a tabbed, multi-window browser running in a single thread that only allows one instance running at a time.

(Hint: "That sounds difficult, we don't want to do it." is not a proper resolution to this problem)

(Disclaimer: it might only be 7 years old, it's been a while since I read that debate on their bug tracker)

Re:I really like Mozilla but (1)

Qwavel (733416) | about 9 months ago | (#44154875)

Totally agree. And Mozilla has a great browser on Android - I love it!

But no way I want to be limited to just Mozilla, when I can get Mozilla + Android.

Now, apparently they are targeting the lower end of the market, but the idea of limiting a mid-range or low-end phone to javascript apps is crazy.

So I think this makes no sense at all.

Re: I really like Mozilla but (1)

deergomoo (2689177) | about 9 months ago | (#44158277)

I was just thinking that. Not only will these phones be sluggish because they're targeting the low end, but they're not running native code either. Ever likely it's described as laggy.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (2)

ChaseTec (447725) | about 9 months ago | (#44154953)

The average person may not even bother with owning a traditional computer in the future, just a phone and maybe a tablet. Mozilla will get locked out of that space if they don't compete. Releasing a browsers for the other mobile platforms doesn't really cut it because it is not a level playing field. On iOS you can't even make your own browser that performs as well as the native one unless you just want to reskin Safari.

If they don't capture a chunk of the mobile space they will die.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (2)

rjstanford (69735) | about 9 months ago | (#44155001)

The average person may not even bother with owning a traditional computer in the future, just a phone and maybe a tablet. Mozilla will get locked out of that space if they don't compete.

So what? They can and should do one thing, do it really well, and maybe add related products. Going from a web browser to an email client is somewhat reasonable - most of what they do is handle network traffic, filter, and render the results. Going from a web browser to an OS makes no sense whatsoever.

What is the Problem with Mozilla (2)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 9 months ago | (#44155095)

If they don't capture a chunk of the mobile space they will die.

I really liked your comment, but I think Mozilla has an image problem. Its marketshare on the desktop, is dropping yet its still IMO the best browser, and other than its startup time(which is probably better since I used it last) I loved the firefox mobile browser on both Android and the N900 . If I didn't have to sync through the cloud to get my bookmarks on the phone tablet I would use it in that space.

They seem a great company, and I cannot believe they have such a hard time selling themselves against Microsoft/Google/Apple who are just mega corporations

Re:What is the Problem with Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155387)

In theory you can sync to your own server, good luck getting it working, I couldn't when I tried, though it may be easier now, but the data is encrypted at the browser end anyway so they can't spy on you through their sync service.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155269)

Why bother with a phone or tablet when you can stick it on a PC-on-a-stick like the MK809, plug it into your TV?:

http://www.mk809.com/

Re:I really like Mozilla but (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155359)

Good information, but why not try the MK809, plug it into your TV?:

http://www.mk809.com/

Re:I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157917)

I own the MK809 and while it is good for multi-media apps as well as basic apps, Android is hopeless at the moment as a Desktop based OS. Firefox OS could be a good replacement.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157969)

Sorry prev replay should should be

I own a MK809...

Don't want people to think I am the creator of the product lol.

Re:I really like Mozilla but (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 months ago | (#44157373)

ok since when was the aim of mozilla world monetary domination?
they wouldn't die. there would still be some platforms where they can release a browser even if they didn't make a mobile os of their own.
and since they're acting straight up like a company would, so I don't think they need my donation cash for their so called foundation and salaries.

they wouldn't die without having a mobile os.. they couldn't expand and pay more to execs though if they don't at least try that. I'd just like a good browser without bullshit from them, but they're spending on resources making all kinds of forays.. like, do I really want an appstore from them? hell no. did personas make a good long term impact? hell no.

(btw even if you reskin safari you don't get same performance as apples safari..)

Re:I really like Mozilla but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155295)

I can't follow why this is a good idea for them.

Now that they've done "agile", they get to put "mobile" on their CVs.

At some point in the evolution of all organizations, the job ceases to be about the product or the end user, but about making yourself look good to your next employer.

NSA? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154361)

Does the NSA app come pre-installed, or do I have to download it?

Re:NSA? (1, Funny)

ArcherB (796902) | about 9 months ago | (#44154699)

Does the NSA app come pre-installed, or do I have to download it?

It's the only app available at this time. More to come soon!

Introducing the new Slashdot Phone! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154395)

Get hourly updates featuring
-Vague laws misinterpreted by engineers to be threats to privacy/civil liberties
-The latest release of every obscure Linux distro and its shortcomings compared to 10 other distros
-Factually spurious articles about the death of the IT industry.
-Philosophical flame wars about the validity of alternative energy/electric cars
-Mental masturbation regarding drones/macs/climate change
-Hypothetical discussions of Rasberry Pi created by Arduino driven 3-D printers purchased with BitCoins.
-Windows 8 trolling

Fully compatible with
¦Android
¦BlackBerry 10
¦iOS
¦Nokia Asha
¦Sailfish OS
¦Windows Phone
¦Windows RT
¦Bada
¦BlackBerry OS
¦Grid OS
¦Linux
¦Mer
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¦Brew
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¦Symbian
¦webOS
¦Tizen

*Unicode support included in a future update

Re:Introducing the new Slashdot Phone! (5, Funny)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 9 months ago | (#44154949)

Bug report: On my Slashdot phone, I will often receive a duplicate phone call a couple days after I receive the first one.

Re:Introducing the new Slashdot Phone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157123)

Is Nick Kolakowski an ass-hat for Slashdot phone?

Re:Introducing the new Slashdot Phone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157887)

Will any of the functionality be written in COBOL, because I think I heard that might be coming back? Or is it dead? Or is it coming back?

Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 9 months ago | (#44154403)

Just what the world needs, another phone OS.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (5, Funny)

oobayly (1056050) | about 9 months ago | (#44154501)

${DIETY} - Use of an undefined higher being found at line 0. Did you forget to feed it?

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155081)

*Underfed* higher being, surely ?

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154513)

Does it spy on you less than Google's offering?

Is it more affordable and generally compatible than Apple's offering?

If so, then the world does, in fact, need it.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

war4peace (1628283) | about 9 months ago | (#44155591)

If it's customizable, feature-packed and "just works", it can spy on my uninteresting, boring, bland person as much as it likes to. A small trade for my life improvement.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44156155)

What exactly do you mean by "Google spies"? As far as we can tell, Google protects your privacy much better than anybody else: For Chrome they document precisely what they send home [google.com], most of this can be switched off. They provide source code to most of Chrome and Android, so people can actually check what's being sent. Android mostly sends home only what's required for their services [google.com], e.g. they send home location information only if you use wifi location services. Their browsers and servers support much better data protection than anybody else's [netcraft.com]. Both Microsoft and Apple are much worse here. And the biggest data leak are the carriers anyway, they always get to know where you are and who you call. So what exactly could any other mobile OS do better than Google when it comes to privacy?

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44156923)

Does it spy on you less than Google's offering?

Is it more affordable and generally compatible than Apple's offering?

If so, then the world does, in fact, need it.

I have one of these, it's called a 'cell phone'. Nothing 'smart' about it.

SPOILER WARNING (2)

BasharTeg (71923) | about 9 months ago | (#44158777)

Spoiler, for those of you who haven't read the books, stop reading here.

This isn't going to work. There will not be a significant number of people who purchase this Mozilla phone. Mozilla phone will have less sales than Zune.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (1)

NewWorldDan (899800) | about 9 months ago | (#44154547)

Someone wake me up when a mobile device has the following features:

can install any arbitrary OS (does not have a locked bootloader)
The default OS is secure
The default OS is not a walled garden

It took my kid hardly any time at all to get her Nexus 7 tablet filled with malware.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (1)

slaker (53818) | about 9 months ago | (#44154621)

From WHAT? Loading ,apks from torrent sites? Installing apps from random Chinese app stores? Clicking on every mobile porn site ad he could find? I've never encountered an Android device with a malware problem. I'm sure that they exist but for normal users of the Google and Amazon app stores I have a hard time believing that it's a serious problem.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (2)

MysteriousPreacher (702266) | about 9 months ago | (#44155439)

Have a good long piss before you go to bed. You'll be sleeping for quite some time. Security and functionality are about trade-offs. Even walled garden systems are relatively insecure, and being able to install anything from anywhere is an incredible risk.

What was the kid doing to fill a stock Nexus with malware? The computing equivalent of indiscriminate sex with Belize prostitutes? What you're looking for is hello.c

It doesn't do much, but it's at least as secure as the compiler and the system in which it's run.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (1)

Microlith (54737) | about 9 months ago | (#44154559)

Yeah, we should shut up and be happy with iOS or Android. It's not like choice and competition ever benefited anyone, anyway.

Also, it's ${DEITY}, which currently evaluates to 0.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (0)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 9 months ago | (#44154671)

Also, it's ${DEITY}, which currently evaluates to 0.

D'oh! Why do they say "'I' before 'E', except after 'C'"? That's weird.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (1)

Somebody Is Using My (985418) | about 9 months ago | (#44155497)

D'oh! Why do they say "'I' before 'E', except after 'C'"? That's weird.

That's because everyone forgets the second verse...
            "or when sounding like "ay" as in neighbor or weigh".

Or the equally forgotten and badly rhymed third verse for words like ancient:
            "Or when CIE sound like "sheh"'

And, of course, every rule of English grammar has an unwritten fourth verse:
            "Exceptions will be made."

Thank Mozilla (3, Insightful)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 9 months ago | (#44154825)

Just what the world needs, another phone OS.

I assume you are being a sarcastic, but the reality is I am sure it does. Right now the whole market is being given to Android, and although Google is not motivated solely by competition, but your time spent in their services. compitition keeps companies honest(look how Microsoft is treating its *cough* customers) Apple are happy to give the market away again, and look to end with a small but profitable niche player, as it was in its now forgotten PC market, or simply will not exist. Personally I think an OS like this has real opportunity(I am more excited by Sailboat...and to a lesser extent Ubuntu). I hope its not blocked by aggressive actions by Microsoft who simply so not have a serious product.

Re:Oh thank ${DIETY} (2)

Patch86 (1465427) | about 9 months ago | (#44155345)

Yeah; monopolies are the best! Who wants any of that stinking choice and competition?

Currently, mobiles are pretty much a two horse race- Android and iOS. There is no credible third player- Windows and Blackberry are both down to the margins. Personally, I'd love to see that two horse race become a three or four horse race. And for vague philosophical reasons, I'd rather that those extra two horses weren't either Windows or Blackberry.

Personally I'm hoping that Sailfish or Ubuntu will do well. But hey, nothing wrong with Mozilla. If they can pull off a decent OS, then more power to them- I'd buy it, if it were any good.

I'd buy one (5, Insightful)

pr0nbot (313417) | about 9 months ago | (#44154477)

I use my phone for talk, text, calendar, alarm, occasional web browsing on the go, random photography, and toilet gaming. I don't need all the exciting social and lifestyle integration that mobile platforms assume you want.

So I'd certainly go for one, provided (a) there's some affordable, nice-ish hardware (like my Nexus 4), and (b) I'm not beholden to the network operator for software updates.

Being free of that pervasive "am I happy with Google slurping this?" feeling every time I do anything on my Android phone would be worth it.

Google Free? (2)

rvw (755107) | about 9 months ago | (#44154613)

I use my phone for talk, text, calendar, alarm, occasional web browsing on the go, random photography, and toilet gaming. I don't need all the exciting social and lifestyle integration that mobile platforms assume you want.

So I'd certainly go for one, provided (a) there's some affordable, nice-ish hardware (like my Nexus 4), and (b) I'm not beholden to the network operator for software updates.

Being free of that pervasive "am I happy with Google slurping this?" feeling every time I do anything on my Android phone would be worth it.

I installed avatarrom on my phone. It turns out to be a big problem, as it takes up more and more system memory. I have 2GB available, and avatarrom takes up 1.7GB of that. That leaves 300MB for apps and cache. Many apps refuse to install or don't work anymore. So did Gmail. I stopped using it. Avatarrom updates followed, as well as Gapps updates (google apps I suppose). The last one I didn't install. Since then I'm Google free. No Google account is needed to use the phone. OK, gmail doesn't work, Google Maps is gone, and worst of all, Google Play doesn't work, so no updates, no new installs, unless I download them manually. But they don't work anyway, so why bother? ;-) Of course I'm going to get rid of this stupid install and see if something else works properly. Until then I can pretend to be GFree...

Re:I'd buy one (1)

Qwavel (733416) | about 9 months ago | (#44154947)

If what you want is to be free of Google (and I'm sure there is a decent market for this given recent revelations) then why doesn't Firefox sell their own Android phone.

They already have a great Android browser, and they could easily put together a great set of core apps without including any Google or Microsoft (etc.) stuff. Or they could team up with Ubuntu?

But being free of the big American companies doesn't require starting from scratch and it doesn't require creating a phone that mainly just runs javascript apps (memory and battery killer).

Re:I'd buy one (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155285)

I use my phone for phoning.

Re:I'd buy one (1)

andrepd (2932623) | about 9 months ago | (#44155329)

You don't need the exiting social and lifestyle integration. I loath it as well. Just install a clean CM and install what you need. If you're that hardcore, you don't even have to install Google Play or Google Calendar or Gmail. No "pervasive "am I happy with Google slurping this?" feeling". I have a 100£ 1.4GHz single core phone and it suits me perfectly. I have access to the latest version of Android, I have total control of my phone and apps and I can do anything except maybe heavy gaming. I feel no need for yet another solution to an unexisting problem.

Re:I'd buy one (1)

pr0nbot (313417) | about 9 months ago | (#44155765)

The things that stop me installing CM are:

(a) last time I looked (a year or two ago) their forums and instructions were basically unintelligible to me; is it now more streamlined?
(b) not knowing whether updates are easy - do you get a notification when an update is available, and is it then easy to install?

I appreciate it's just a bunch of hackers fiddling with undocumented hardware, so it's always going to be a bit slapdash.

Re:I'd buy one (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#44157339)

I use my phone for [...] toilet gaming.

This comment is probably lost on someone nick'd pr0nbot and ironic as hell coming from someone called drinkypoo but if you want to do yourself a favor you'll never say that again.

Market (1)

Skatox (1109939) | about 9 months ago | (#44154511)

This will be great for some latinamerican countries where you'll need save some salary months for buying a bad/lowend Android phone. Also there are some people who want a simple phone to send sms, call and basic internet stuff and doesn't care OS, just want to save money.

Re:Market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154711)

Sir, I have it on good authority that Android phones are the best alternative around, because they're so cheap (compared to Apple's overpriced toys), and they have no onerous restrictions on the user's freedom, on account of Andy Rubin making them so free.

Please stop with your "people in latin american countries can't afford them" FUD - everybody knows that Apple is the overpriced vendor, while Google is tenderly solicitous of everybody's needs, and will even sell phones at a loss to make sure that everybody can get one.

Google is, after all, completely egalitarian and loves to help people adopt technology - not because it benefits them, but because they are, in a word... love.

Could it work as a runtime on other phones? (3, Interesting)

pijokela (462279) | about 9 months ago | (#44154517)

IMO it would make more sense to use Firefox OS as a runtime on other smart phones. This way you could write a HTML 5 APP and it would work on browsers and in the Firefox OS runtime in any smart phone... sort of like what Java was supposed to be.

Any idea if something like this is actually being done?

Together all these niche phones would have a chance, but if all of them want to have their own app store and walled garden, they will all fail.

Re:Could it work as a runtime on other phones? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154799)

I have two Firefox OS runtimes, just like what you describe, on my phone already.

They're called Safari and Chrome.

What you've just argued is that "Firefox should abandon making a phone OS, and just build a browser for all these different platforms."

Not a bad suggestion, since I think the Firefox OS phones will be about as stillborn as the MSFT Kin, but why the need to call it an "OS"? It's a fucking web browser.

Re:Could it work as a runtime on other phones? (2)

POWRSURG (755318) | about 9 months ago | (#44155013)

You can install Firefox on Android. The Firefox OS Marketplace can be accessed from said Firefox. You can install apps on there and and it will load the app using Firefox. This is the same rendering engine -- the same HTML5 app -- using the same everything from Firefox OS.

Re:Could it work as a runtime on other phones? (2)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | about 9 months ago | (#44155325)

What Mozilla really wants to do with Firefox os, is to allow that to happen. It wants to push open web standards to the point where a "native" app and a html 5 app are equally capable. its not trying, nor does it want to create a Firefox runtime. Its trying to make HTML5 better for all HTML5 capable browsers.

Re:Could it work as a runtime on other phones? (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 9 months ago | (#44156253)

Then Firefox will be to mobile what Java was to the desktop in the 90s, I don't see anything that could go wrong with that plan.

well.. if you can live without appel (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 months ago | (#44157045)

Apple prohibits such app runners.

but what is pretty common is writing a mobile app in html5+javascript and running it inside a shim on ios, android and wp..

Does it run WhatsApp? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44154653)

If it does, then it's going to be a hit. If it's doesn't it will not fly.
Currently there are only two kinds of phones: those with WhatsApp and those without.

Phones from the Future! (1)

DexterIsADog (2954149) | about 9 months ago | (#44154731)

"But that doesn't mean future phones can't go toe-to-toe against anything else on the market, provided Mozilla and its partners provide solid support and marketing."

So they produced something that sucks, but if they improve what they do, they can produce something in the future that doesn't suck? Why doesn't Microsoft get this kind of encouragement any time they put, oh, almost anything on the market? They could improve their sucky products with hypothetical future efforts too!

Fully functional Phones (3, Interesting)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 9 months ago | (#44154957)

So they produced something that sucks, but if they improve what they do, they can produce something in the future that doesn't suck?

The problem was the review (in context of your Microsoft comments they get a free pass too often and are blocking the market for Fledging OS's), is that A €69 / $90 (including €30 / $39 balance) for prepay customers was not compared as one. These are not flagship products they are aimed at the very bottom of the smartphone market. Now admittedly hardware in that market is getting better. I notice http://www.gizchina.com/2013/06/27/goophone-x1-set-to-be-worlds-cheapest-quad-core-phone-at-less-than-100/ [gizchina.com] Goophone are planning on selling a quad core phone for $100...but that in an uncertain future.

The bottom line is I saw some pretty advanced phones for very little money.

nothing personal against Mozilla but... (1)

FudRucker (866063) | about 9 months ago | (#44154803)

since it has been revealed that the Govt via the NSA/FBI and other three letter turds that float around in the govt cesspool i plan on cutting back on technology as much as possible, that means within a few months to a couple of years as my tech toys die i do not plan to replace them, when this desktop PC dies thats it no more desktop PCs, same with my laptop and cellphone, fuck it i dont need them,

Re:nothing personal against Mozilla but... (2)

Microlith (54737) | about 9 months ago | (#44154871)

So, removing yourself from modern society I take it?

Re:nothing personal against Mozilla but... (1)

FudRucker (866063) | about 9 months ago | (#44154925)

yup, i will soon be leaving, i will be just another hillbilly living way out in the wood in some ramshackle cabin, i will be the greybearded guy sitting in a rocking chair on the front porch shaking my fist at modern society and saying: "HEY! GET OFF MY LAWN!"

Slashdot on Firefox Mobile (3, Interesting)

pmontra (738736) | about 9 months ago | (#44154907)

Go look at the desktop version of this site [slashdot.org] with Firefox 22 for Android and you'll see why Mozilla is going to have a hard time with their OS. It's a mix of Mozilla's poor technical choices (look at the same site with Dolphin HD or the stock browser) and sites caring only about Webkit mobile browsers.

Re:Slashdot on Firefox Mobile (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155519)

this site

What site? Your link could have easily had the text "Slashdot Classic" instead of mysterious "this site", which forces us to hover over the link to see what you mean.

Re:Slashdot on Firefox Mobile (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157227)

Wasn't it obvious that OP was talking about this site, you know, this one, the site you're reading right now...

Or have the bots started ripping off comments from slashdot and re-posting them on other sites you read?

Re:Slashdot on Firefox Mobile (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155539)

Go look at the desktop version of this site [slashdot.org] with Firefox 22 for Android and you'll see why Mozilla is going to have a hard time with their OS.

I'm sorry...They're going to have a hard time with their OS because when you request the desktop version of a website on a mobile device it actually gives you the desktop version which doesn't work "well" with a mobile device? (By the way, the desktop version looks exactly the way it should in Firefox on Android.)

Here's a pro-tip: If you wanted a mobile-friendly version, don't request the desktop version.

Re:Slashdot on Firefox Mobile (2)

Teun (17872) | about 9 months ago | (#44156525)

I don't see your problem, I have a Nexus 4 and 7 and on both I prefer the desktop version.

The fact articles on the mobile version of /. are usually not updated in a timely fashion is part of the reason I prefer the desktop version.
Since a few months, as a matter of fact since I got my Nexus 4, I prefer to use Firefox because it has a nicely working resize option.

Yes I have the Full Screen plug in installed.

if android worked, why not firefox os... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155353)

does anyone using android, aside from a few fanbois, actually care what's under the hood? they use it because
1) it basically works
2) it has a touchscreen and apps
3) it brings internet-age computer apps like browser and email to phones
and manufacturers lined up to use it because:
1) it's free to license and use.
2) see #1
3) see #2

browser everything (0)

JustNiz (692889) | about 9 months ago | (#44155475)

I cant help but think that running everything through a browser interface would have to make the user experience feel relatively laggy and maybe unnecessarily quirky/badly integrated when compared to Android or other smart phones where the app you're interacting with is running natively and doesnt have artificial limitations imposed by needing to go through HTML 5 for everything.
I fully expect 3D HW gaming and maybe multimedia will most clearly demonstrate the Achilles heel of Firefox's approach.

Re:browser everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157055)

Most Android apps are not native apps, they are java apps running in a Dalvik virtual machine. How is it different from javascript apps running in Mozilla's Spidermonkey?

Re:browser everything (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44158147)

Most Android apps are not native apps, they are java apps running in a Dalvik virtual machine. How is it different from javascript apps running in Mozilla's Spidermonkey?

You're an idiot.

Re:browser everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44159751)

Javascript is useful and has revolutionized what we can do with websites.

Java sucks because it keeps popping up asking for upgrades, sits in the notification bar of Windows, keeps getting disabled by Firefox for being out of date, throws error messages at random times, is slow and has non-native widgets.

Re:browser everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44158635)

1) Android apps are not native apps
2) With asm.js Mozila claims near native performance: http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2013/05/native-level-performance-on-the-web-a-brief-examination-of-asm-js/

Lightweight? Web browser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44155655)

Somehow it feels like an oxymoron to me. Perhaps in comparison to your usual daily Java bloat?

Mood: Depressed.

focus (2)

aahpandasrun (948239) | about 9 months ago | (#44155989)

Firefox needs to focus on their core product more than trying to expand into a marketplace that's completely over their head. There's a reason why people switch to Chrome. For starters, improving the slow startup speed compared to Chrome and Webkit Opera would be awesome.

Mozilla's new slogan: We don't backdoor the NSA (1)

bussdriver (620565) | about 9 months ago | (#44156391)

MS, Google and in 2012 Apple signed up according to the leaks. NONE of them let you compile their software yourself. webkit is just an engine, the apps are not open to compile.

Firefox does things fast enough just like the other browsers are just good enough feature wise to keep simple users happy. I usually can't move faster than firefox but I can't have dozens of useful additions in the other browsers (the main ones have been ported but the cool new ideas still happen as firefox plug-ins 1st.)

FoxConn, Asus, Acer (1)

Spy Handler (822350) | about 9 months ago | (#44156361)

and the other >1% market share phone manufacturers should get together and release phones that lets the user easily download and install Firefox OS or Android (the free version) or Ubuntu Mobile or any other open source OS.

Apple and Samsung and Nokia will never do it since they do not want to end up making cheap commodity hardware with razor thin margins. But you have zero market share anyways... a small profit is better than none, right?

Re:FoxConn, Asus, Acer (1)

sardinha (2711345) | about 9 months ago | (#44156723)

The FirefoxOS tablet from FoxConn can make a big diferrence to the success of this project. The FoxConn team are very motivated, not only in the (expectable good) hardware but essential in software development to support FirefoxOS (the key factor for sucess). Let's wait until wednesday to review the product announcement.

um... what? (1)

sacrilicious (316896) | about 9 months ago | (#44156935)

But can Firefox OS make any headway in a mobile-device crowded with options?

Um, yes. Yes it can. It will be installed on the device. Consider that its headway.

Reeking of Phish-Gefulte (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44157149)

hMM, somethin smells fishy here...... /. of a decade ago would have shown a lot of these commenters to be stooges. thats all folks.

pork-pies can be telling, said the Cockney lad.

Actually looking at buying.. (1)

gQuigs (913879) | about 9 months ago | (#44157617)

But they only have contact Sync with Facebook (and SIM card of course).

I would want a privacy oriented organization to not be pushing people to Facebook...

How open will it be? (1)

excelsior_gr (969383) | about 9 months ago | (#44157847)

I have been resisting buying a smartphone for years. The only sensible reason for me to own one would be so that I can tinker with it. Sure you can play around with Android a bit, but I want something that will ease my tinkering rather than try to prevent me. Apple, of course, is straight out because of this. I want a smartphone that I can turn inside out, hack, wipe, reinstall its OS, re-hack, re-wipe and re-install, write small apps for, use to exchange data with, and get creative with its WiFi, bluetooth and accelerometers. And I want all that without fearing of EULAs and other layer mumbo jumbo. And a pony.

Give me such a phone and you have a customer.

Re:How open will it be? (1)

gerddie (173963) | about 9 months ago | (#44158745)

I would guess that the phones you get with a contract or pre-paid would be locked for a certain time, but if you can get hold of a developer preview phone [geeksphone.com], it is completely open, the only problem so far is that whenever they have some in stock they are sold out very fast.

Interesting (2)

mpol (719243) | about 9 months ago | (#44157855)

I think it's an interesting OS to watch for. I can see similarities with the web. The web seemed to turn into a proprietary format. Firefox stumbled on, but it seemed like an uphill battle that would never succeed. However they did succeed, by just keeping to their goals. The web now is more open then 10 years ago, where you couldn't even access the website of your bank with Firefox.

Now with this OS, it might turn out the same. It's all somewhat closed platforms. Apple uses Obj-C, Android a Java variant. Other platforms use Qt. Now Firefox comes along and uses a platform that is already open, html5/css/js, and uses it for apps.

I just hope the other underdogs follow suit, and use the same API, like Ubuntu, Jolla, Tizen.
We'' lees what the future brings. I think they can do it, and provide a common platform for the future.

Not the best market to launch in (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about 9 months ago | (#44158481)

Assuming you can't convert the laguage to apps easily to English then it's really only going to sell in Spain (I would assume) and given their economy is one of the worst in Europe I'm not sure people are jumping at the chance to buy new smart phones. Though if it's cheap I guess that might work in their favour.

FireFox Cant (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44159105)

Firefox cant even get the Browser right anymore. They dont listen to its end users, Dont fix the real issues, and only fix the ones that make the system work without crashing. Look at the mobile browser,The "top Sites", you cant delete them, they are always there, ( some you can remove others you have to completely reset the browser to get them gone. Millions of users have complained about this, firefox has released several updates, none of them fix the issue. So if they cant get that right why do they seem to think they can get the whole OS right? The main reason for Firefox when it began was out to HELP the end user, and not exploit them. The company got purchased ( back in the day) and now the owners have gold fever, which clouds their judgement on whats real to its users. Firefox thinks just like the rest of the internet companies out there, they think they are in charge of ththe internet. When thats not the case. Its the peoples choice that makes and controls the internet, Not the companies that actually make it run. FireFox can and will follow the path of self distruction if they dont get back to their roots.

Google is evil, Apple is rotten, Firefox answers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#44159565)

Google is evil, Apple is rotten, Firefox answers the call.

That is it.

Greekgeek :-)

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