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Mozilla Launches Firefox OS Devices In Stores, Opens Up App Payments

timothy posted about a year ago | from the ok-now-let's-talk-migration-path dept.

Cellphones 57

An anonymous reader writes "After almost two years of development, Mozilla today officially launched Firefox OS devices in stores. At the same time, the company has opened up payments for developers interested in charging for their apps or charging for content inside their apps. Last week, the first commercial Firefox OS devices arrived in Spain ready to be sold by Telefónica, starting on July 9 with the ZTE Open for €69 ($88.80) including VAT. Mozilla says Poland, Colombia, and Venezuela also have upcoming launches soon, and more countries will be joining the list as well, but today today marks the day official Firefox OS devices are available in store."

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Spain? (1)

ISoldat53 (977164) | about a year ago | (#44225621)

Great, pick a country that's in a depression to launch a product.

Re:Spain? (4, Insightful)

Deathspawner (1037894) | about a year ago | (#44225671)

It's an $88 USD offering, so that might be the point. Spain users might be able to latch onto it quicker than o thers.

Re:Spain? (2)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year ago | (#44225925)

Good point. Besides, Telefonica is one of the European telephony giants, and has very, very deep pockets; hence, Mozilla actually landed a good deal by having Telefonica doing this launch. Good for them ! I wish them all the luck they need, and more.

Re:Spain? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44225981)

It's an $88 USD offering, so that might be the point. Spain users might be able to latch onto it quicker than o thers.

it's almost too good, it includes 30 euros of prepaid. also you can pay 24*2.38 euros if you're on postpaid.

which begs the question is it simlocked? I know it would be.. well, counter to the name.. but still, can anyone confirm it is not sim-locked? it's telefonica after all...

Re:Spain? (1)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year ago | (#44226609)

which begs the question is it simlocked? I know it would be.. well, counter to the name.. but still, can anyone confirm it is not sim-locked?

At least the one that went one sale in Germany, recently, was not :-)

Re: Spain? (2)

Matthew (2977871) | about a year ago | (#44226141)

What better market is there to amass market share than in a depressed market where competition is nil? Profits may not be high but market share is vital as all economy's do rebound. This is not a short term play folks...

Re:Spain? (1)

iampiti (1059688) | about a year ago | (#44227941)

For what I can see in my social circle, Spain has a great number of Android phones, some iPhones and almost nothing else. There's some people holding on to their old Blackberries and very few people who use Windows Phone.
What I mean is that Android is pretty entrenched here, much more in the lower end smartphones segment, and I don't think Firefox OS has a good chance of succeding. I believe most Spaniards, faced with the choice of selecting a cheap smartphone would rather choose what they know, and that is Android.
Anyway, I wish success to Firefox OS, since I like its concept and more competitors is always good for consumers.

Re:Spain? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44235415)

Geeksphone [geeksphone.com] the company who designed the two developer preview phones, and Telefónica are Spanish companies.

Re:Spain? (1)

lipanitech (2620815) | about a year ago | (#44236113)

Well this is another attempt to catch a market in Europe. During the whole palm craze a company launched a linux based open source phone in spain and it flopped BAD I hope this does not happen to firefox. I wish they would have learned from other companies mistakes.

Work hard, get code stolen... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44225675)

No thanks. Why are all the suits wanting us devs to give it away for free? We deserve money too... Mozilla, you forgot a way to secure our code.

Re:Work hard, get code stolen... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44225801)

Fair point. Why vote down without a comment?

Re:Work hard, get code stolen... (1)

Mike Frett (2811077) | about a year ago | (#44230725)

You can Moderate, or you can Comment; choose one. Moderator Help is at the very bottom. =)

cyanogenmod (3, Funny)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44225743)

I want to see phones ship with Cyanogenmod by default. But while we're wishing, I want a free app that turns my smartphone into a portable unlimited beer tap. And also, a bag of holding would be nice.

Re:cyanogenmod (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226119)

I hope not, and here's why:
    I suspect if that were the case Google would put up more barriers to getting their software onto a phone (rather than the first boot wizard that CM had last time I installed it), making my CM experience worse.

I welcome this with open arms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44225765)

and closed wallet/. Show me WAREZ/. *Ding*

Oh fuck off (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44225853)

oh look another account/middleman/appstore

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_mobile_software_distribution_platforms [wikipedia.org]

sad

Re:Oh fuck off (2)

xatr0z (633279) | about a year ago | (#44226009)

Good thing that Mozilla apps can be viewed on any smartphone: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/Apps

Resources? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44225923)

How much resources just got diverted from the browser that I use every day into something that I don't care about?

Panda (0)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#44225987)

Why is there a picture of a red panda with the article? Did some journalist actually think it was a fox?

Re:Panda (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226029)

Because red pandas are also known as firefoxes. It's where the name and logo for the Firefox browser comes from.

Hard to believe anyone on Slashdot wouldn't know this.

Re:Panda (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226243)

Ok, I smell lockstep branding. :-P

Re:Panda (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44228663)

The name was chosen before the Red Panda association was know. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Firefox#Naming

Re:Panda (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44231093)

From your link:

The name "Firefox" (a reference to the red panda) was chosen for its similarity to "Firebird"

From Mozilla themselves:

A "Firefox" is another name for the red panda.

http://www-archive.mozilla.org/projects/firefox/firefox-name-faq.html [mozilla.org]

Re:Panda (4, Informative)

RLU486983 (1792220) | about a year ago | (#44226037)

Apparently, "Firefox" is the nickname for the Red Panda.

Re:Panda (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#44226075)

But the Firefox logo is clearly a fox, not a red panda.

Re:Panda (1)

meza (414214) | about a year ago | (#44226223)

From this [actsofvolition.com] blog I think the original sketch up for the logo looks more like a panda while the final rendition was for some reason made to look more like a fox. But maybe it's just my mind playing tricks on me. I honestly never knew a fire fox was a panda and not a fox (or just a made up name). And I had also completely forgotten about Phoenix and Firebird.

Re:Panda (1)

meza (414214) | about a year ago | (#44226333)

Replying to myself with some more information in lack of being able to edit Slashdot posts. Apparently it was a conscious decision to go with the fox instead of a panda as the panda "didn't quite conjure up the right imagery" [archive.org] . So there you have it.

Re:Panda (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#44226343)

Look at the shape of the head and snout in the most current logo, which is quite different from your linked article. It's a fox, not a red panda.

Re:Panda (1)

rHBa (976986) | about a year ago | (#44226555)

I agree, although red pandas do have bush tails they also have distinct rings on it and markings on their faces which are not shown on this logo [staticflickr.com] which is obviously a fox.

Re:Panda (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#44227901)

Well, that picture leaves no doubt. Thanks.

Firesomething (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44228415)

What disappoints me is that the Firesomething add-on [cosmicat.com] , which once gave each copy of the browser its own <element><animal> name, has gone unmaintained.

Re:Panda (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226885)

I think this little guy [blogspot.com] resembles the Firefox logo.

Don't you just want to hug him?

Web hosting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226131)

> Before submitting your app, you need the following: Web hosting for the app (the Firefox OS Marketplace does not host apps).

I would like to buy such a phone, but "no hosting"? Really?

Waste of time (-1, Troll)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44226203)

Why is Mozilla wasting their time with this crap when they should focus on getting their browser not to leak memory and crash all the time?

Re: Waste of time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226497)

Why is kbg wasting our time with this drivel when he should focus on not spouting the same old nonexistent problems.

You forgot to throw in: I'll wait a few months for Firefox OS v216!

Re:Waste of time (3, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | about a year ago | (#44226509)

Because it doesn't leak and crash all the time. Check your add-ons.

Re:Waste of time (1)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44226889)

You obviously don't run Firefox constantly open for months at a time. But that is my point if the browser can't handle addons without crashing and consuming all memory then that is something that should be addressed by at least having some tools in the browser to detect and/or fix the situation. One of the addons that I know that has some problems is the Flash Player plugin, but this plugin is basically required for browsing the web, so the Mozilla devs should work with Adobe to fix this situation or write their own integrated flash player. Just fix the damn browser please.

Re:Waste of time (3, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | about a year ago | (#44227339)

You obviously don't run Firefox constantly open for months at a time.

No, I let it update periodically which necessitates closing it. Sometimes I even reboot so my system can install patches.

if the browser can't handle addons without crashing and consuming all memory

So the browser is supposed to be capable of solving the halting problem?

One of the addons that I know that has some problems is the Flash Player plugin

That's not an addon. That's a plugin. Mozilla has isolated it via the plugin host but it is still its own, closed source executable. How the hell can you possibly hold Mozilla to task for problems in flash?

Here, let me fix this for you:

Just fix the damn browser please. And by fix I mean do the impossible and solve other people's problems.

Re:Waste of time (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44227573)

Deploying Firefox as a pseudo OS on millions (maybe) of computer phones will give them an incentive to fix/improve their javascript host, at least. Which they have been doing for years already.

I don't have too many troubles with flash plugin, in fact if my browser is slow and my computer is swapping I can always do a killall -9 plugin-container, which I find myself doing in hard situations but not often at all. If you're auto-loading every flash object (which is the default) while browsing on over 100 tabs you're asking for trouble. Flashblock fixes any flash plugin problem I might have and you can whitelist that one site (e.g. I whitelist soundcloud.com, on another computer I whitelisted deezer as well)

Re:Waste of time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44339767)

The issue is javascript is broken as a language. Both android and firefox OS have a significant disadvantage in efficiency due to garbage collection and other poor architectural choices. iOS is slightly better settling on reference counting, avoiding major issues due to developer neglegence but allowing good developers to optimize their applications for efficient memory utiliization. Javascript is even worse off than java with no explcit memory allocation primitives. Oh, and no delete doesn't do what you think it does...

Re:Waste of time (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44227405)

It is able to crash. Sometimes it will crash once a day or more, sometimes it never crashes. That's with few and benign add-ons (though the most "heavy" of them is Session Manager) including Flashblock with tends to improve stability and resource usage by not auto-loading flash all the time.

Re:Waste of time (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#44226571)

Because mobile is the next big platform, and must have presence there to keep being relevant? Because none of the 2/3 main mobile platforms are truly open? Because their vision is open web everywhere? You don't need specifically Firefox OS to access that marketplace.

If/When those leaks are found they probably will be fixed (those devels "wasting their time" are users too), but there is a lot of people working in a lot of areas.

Re:Waste of time (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44226671)

They did, it doesn't leak memory anymore. The browser still pegs CPU and still crashes, but crashes orders of magnitude less often than Netscape 4.x. That's because the web is horrible, it's a platform for automatic execution of perfectly portable interpreted code of varying and terrible quality and I don't bother filtering it (barring Flashblock).

Re:Waste of time (0)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44226949)

A browser should never crash, period. If it crashes then it is because the Mozilla devs wasted their time on some pet projects instead of using that time for QA and testing of the core browser.

Re:Waste of time (1)

freezin fat guy (713417) | about a year ago | (#44227517)

A browser should never crash, period. If it crashes then it is because the Mozilla devs wasted their time on some pet projects instead of using that time for QA and testing of the core browser.

Agreed.

Also, software should never have security vulnerabilities, should never lag and should never have unexpected behaviours of any kind.

The fact that Firefox is the only web browsing software which is less than absolutely perfect is very damning.

Re:Waste of time (1)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44228513)

It isn't like software engineering is a new thing, there are known methods and ways to test for memory leaks and software crashes, there are also known methods for QA and regression tests for software. I understand there will always be some bugs in any software but as soon as a single crash occurs you should have enough information to identify the bug and fix it with an update.

Re:Waste of time (1)

ebh (116526) | about a year ago | (#44227705)

How do we know that browser developers developed the OS, rather than newly-hired/volunteered OS developers?

Re:Waste of time (1)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44228561)

Doesn't matter as long as there are bugs in the browser you fix that as first priority before you focus on something else.

Re:Waste of time (1)

kcbnac (854015) | about a year ago | (#44229829)

So does that mean when the servers are down, I'm supposed to pull the secretary into the meeting where we try to fix it?

How about the janitors?

You let the folks you hired for that task, work on that task. You don't reassign everyone to focus on one thing, that is overkill and a waste.

Re:Waste of time (1)

kbg (241421) | about a year ago | (#44230679)

No but you prioritize the tasks based on how serious they are. Bugs are number one, new features are second, eye candy is third.

Re:Waste of time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44229001)

I see you either a) haven't used it in over five years or b) work for Opera or Microsoft.

What's the full price? (2)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44226563)

I couldn't find the price of the ZTE Open yet, I mean unlocked, without SIM and without dealing with an operator at all. The Alcatel One Touch Fire is the other Firefox OS phone for now but I don't know how much it costs.

I guess if it's cheap enough it could be used as a PDA and media player only, or as a phone with no data plan and use wifi, SD, USB only.
But I'm fine with my small clamshell Samsung phone too (with no secondary display, no camera, no anything), long battery life and perfect form factor. It would be a pain to carry a rectangle everyday in one of my pants pocket (I carry enough crap already : tobacco, cigarette paper, keys, lighter, smartcards, corkscrew, a small purse with cash coins and USB drive)

Re:What's the full price? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44226803)

It looks like it'll be in the same rough price bracket as the two Geeksphones. The price you are seeing is for an operator-locked device, and it may be subsidised, but it is not on contract; it's PAYG. These things are cheap.

Re:What's the full price? (1)

TheSeatOfMyPants (2645007) | about a year ago | (#44235181)

It would be a pain to carry a rectangle everyday in one of my pants pocket (I carry enough crap already : tobacco, cigarette paper, keys, lighter, smartcards, corkscrew, a small purse with cash coins and USB drive)

When I switched to a 4" touchscreen earlier this year, I was surprised to discover that it actually fits *better* in my tiny messenger bag/purse (or back pocket) than my compact dumbphone did because it's maybe half the thickness even with a case on. Alternately, you could just get a slightly bigger bag.

Re:What's the full price? (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | about a year ago | (#44339711)

How about quit smoking? You halve the amount of crap in your purse and with the money you save at the end of the year you can buy yourself the latest and greatest phone, and a tablet, and a laptop, and likely a TV too.

Oh and you'll live longer too. And there's a possibility later in life your death may be less painful.

oh yay (0)

smash (1351) | about a year ago | (#44227467)

Given the asshattery displayed by the browser team as of late with regards to... well, everything since say, 2005, I suspect they'll probably pick up at least 40% of the Windows Phone 8 users.

HeyBubble (1)

Corby31 (2963275) | about a year ago | (#44243915)

HeyBubble is a live chat software that allows to speak directly with their website visitors. With HeyBubble you will able to get a first contact and to give information to your visitors. http://www.heybubble.com/ [heybubble.com]
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