The ZTE Open C, the very first smartphone with Firefox OS, was launched in several new countries over the summer, including Germany and France, where it sells for under €80. The alternative, open-source mobile operating system is now available on 12 smartphones distributed by 13 operators in 24 markets on three continents.
In Europe, outside of France and Germany, Firefox OS smartphones can now be found in Spain, the Czech Republic, Poland, Greece and Macedonia, namely through devices in the Alcatel Onetouch Fire range.
In Asia, Firefox OS is now present on local devices such as the Spice Fire One (Mi - FX1) and Cloud FX in India and the GoFox F15 in Bangladesh. The system is expected to arrive in the Japanese market by the end of this year.
Meanwhile, in Latin America, Firefox OS was launched in collaboration with Alcatel and ZTE in Mexico, El Salvador, Panama, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Uruguay and is due to arrive in Costa Rica, Argentina and Ecuador before the end of 2014.
Priority for developing markets
In each of these countries, Firefox OS is paired with relatively basic devices that are still advanced enough to allow optimal function of the system. The ZTE Open C, for example, is an entry-level 3G smartphone with a 4-inch screen (480x800 pixels), a 2MP camera and 512MB of RAM. A dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor running at 1.2GHz powers the device.
At its introduction of Firefox OS at Barcelona's Mobile World Congress in February 2013, the Mozilla Foundation stated that its primary aim was to launch the device in developing nations where the smartphone market is not yet saturated.
By default, Firefox OS provides an interface for managing calls, text messages, emails and photos. Facebook and Twitter are also built into the system, a feature that allows users to try out apps without necessarily having to download them. The complete selection of apps (tools, video players, navigation systems, games...) can be found at the Firefox Marketplace.