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Firefox Cellphones

Firefox OS Powered Flame Available For Pre-order; Ships Globally 109

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the everyone-has-a-phone dept.
sfcrazy (1542989) writes "Developers need access to device running the platform for which they develop. Nexus was Google's reference device and now Mozilla is coming out with its own device. Mozilla has opened pre-order for Flame, its Firefox OS reference devices for $170 including free shipping." Specs are, of course, modest: a dual core 1.2GHz snapdragon, 1G of RAM, 8G of flash, an 854×480 4.5" screen, and a 5MP camera. Now, if only they would release a device with a keyboard.
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Firefox OS Powered Flame Available For Pre-order; Ships Globally

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  • Expensive (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @11:19AM (#47109795)

    I can get a moto g for 179 $ that has more software, a quad core processor and a better screen. This won't cut it.

    • Re:Expensive (Score:4, Insightful)

      by X.25 (255792) on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @12:43PM (#47110683)

      I can get a moto g for 179 $ that has more software, a quad core processor and a better screen. This won't cut it.

      Apples. Oranges. And all that.

      Jesus, now I understand why your leaders call you 'consumers' and not 'citizens' these days...

    • by tepples (727027)
      But how well can you use the Moto G to test an application for Firefox OS that you are developing? I could be wrong, but I don't think the Firefox app for Android supports all APIs that Firefox OS supports.
      • by Elbart (1233584)
        The more important question is: Why would you develop for FirefoxOS in the first place?
        • by tepples (727027)
          If your application is on the Firefox OS app store, but your competitor's isn't, your user base among users of Firefox OS phones will exceed that of your competitors. Is your core complaint that "users of Firefox OS phones" will be an insignificant user base?
          • Yeah, It seems like that would be a very likely outcome. As phones like the Moto G come down in price and up in quality, I'm not sure there is much of a niche for firefox os to exist in. Furthermore, my app's niche is not the same as those buying a phone that works as terribly as firefox os phones.

        • The more important question is: Why would you develop for FirefoxOS in the first place?

          I dunno - maybe because you want to see a more free, more open mobile OS that you have more control over? One that Google doesn't have a zillion hooks into? One that offers the user more control over the permissions that apps are granted?

          Asking "why would you develop for firefox", (as opposed to Android, Apple, or whatever), is kind of like asking why one would develop for Linux as opposed to Windows.

  • You can get a JIAYU G4S for around $180
    It has 1.7Ghz 8 Core CPU
    2GB of RAM
    1280x720 Display
    13 MP Camera

    So $170 for something with the specs of a under $100 phone seems lame.

    Is this legacy of a design taking too long to come to market?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I think you missed that this is a developer reference device to allow developers to get cracking before the main market hits.

      There is a certain advantage to having your product available before the mass market adoption of a platform kicks in.

      • by gstoddart (321705)

        There is a certain advantage to having your product available before the mass market adoption of a platform kicks in.

        You know what else is an advantage before mass market adoption? Specs which will lead to mass market adoption.

        These aint it.

        • by jbridges (70118)

          If the final shipping price for a unit with these specs is around $60, then it may sell.

          I expect a year from now, the no name $60 smartphones with Android will have similar specs.

          • by qubezz (520511)

            You can get an almost identically-specified Windows 8.1 Nokia Lumia 520 for $59.99, no contract. The only thing it's missing is a camera flash and a front-facing camera for video chats (Skype still works, it just points the wrong way.)

            The latest developer rev of Windows Phone has word flow keyboard, which turns touch-screen typing from painfully intolerable to pretty cool.

            Even Blackberry, giving it's Playbooks away to developers, couldn't get the adoption jump-started, so I don't know how an overpriced Fir

      • by Elbart (1233584)
        This gotta be the third or fourth developer-focused FirefoxOS-device. When are there going to be some consumer-focused devices?
  • Sure it may be a comparative alternative to Android; but still, designed to help Adobe hurt the user, even if this hurt is minimized, rather than designed to let the user do what they need. I hear the Jolla is nice, any word on how it compares?
    • Just FYI, the DRM is only being added to desktop Firefox. Not Firefox OS at this time (they did somewhat leave this open, but have no plans).

    • by tepples (727027)
      Without digital restrictions management, how do you expect to be able to rent movies and television programs produced by major studios?
      • how do you expect to be able to rent movies and television programs produced by major studios?

        I don't intend to rent these things, or buy these things. If it's produced by a studio which uses DRM I don't want it to be in my life.

        • Unfortunately, you've been outvoted. I'm under the impression that the vast majority of potential users of Firefox OS prefer feature films distributed by a major studio to feature films distributed under a license for free cultural works, despite the DRM of the former.
  • by dalias (1978986)
    Why is anyone still making devices with sub-300-dpi screens? Especially when you're trying to launch a new OS -- this is the best way to make your OS look like crap, even if it's otherwise great. Price is definitely not a show-stopper here; the ASUS ZenFone has a high-end screen in the ~$200 range, and cheap Chinese phones like Zopo have had them for a long time at much lower prices. If they're really worried about cost, scrap the 5 MP camera which is a complete joke when your screen is 0.4 MP...
    • by Maxwell (13985)

      Launching a new OS that only works on $700 smartphones? Good luck with that. How about making sure developers write apps that work on typical, average phones?

      • by dalias (1978986)
        Perhaps you missed the part of my comment where I noted that devices with high-end displays are possible in the $150-250 range and cited specific examples...
    • scrap the 5 MP camera which is a complete joke when your screen is 0.4 MP

      For one thing, the color filter eats at least half your image sensor's megapixels. Digital zoom (essentially, cropping a photo after shooting it) eats another three-fourths of what's left. Now you're down to 0.6 usable MP.

  • 1 year? 2 years? I really want manufacturer's to start having a public EOL date at launch. I'm tired of buying phones and having them go into no-update land...

    • by Anonymous Coward

      My desktop PC didn't come with an EOL date, and that's the way I like it. If the maker of one OS decides to end support, I can install a different OS. That's because the PC is an open platform. Before I can take phones and tablets seriously, three things must happen: 1) These devices must adhere to a hardware standard that is completely supported by multiple independent operating systems, 2) the same OS must run on hardware made by different manufacturers, 3) fixing software vulnerabilities must not depend

    • by Shados (741919)

      While too short for taste, Nexus devices at least have a well defined/known EOL, so they're good for that.

      Too bad the nexus program is probably not gonna go on for much longer though :(

    • Asa answered this question elsewhere to the extent that the company supplying the hardware has a 12 month contract to supply updates.

      So probably not much official support from the manufacturer but the ability to build from source by being an official Mozilla build target. Hence as much support from the b2g community as Nexus devices do.

      Firefox OS uses the Android infrastructure for builds. It is powered by Qualcomm. So should be relatively easy to port Cyanogenmod to it, were one to switch OSes.

  • is the word you wanted, no?

  • I assume I'm not alone in thinking if you order a communications device on-line, there is a slight non-zero chance of it being intercepted during shipment and tampered with by various TLAs.

    Of course, I think the odds of this happening is still dependent on who you are. Say, for example, a Guardian journalist with a company-issued laptop.

    I firmly believe this is why the GCHQ methodically destroyed certain specific areas within their laptops (not just the hard drives): they were obliterating the components
  • by mmell (832646) <mike.mell@gmail.com> on Wednesday May 28, 2014 @12:53PM (#47110789)
    Actually, I mean that. More choices, more incentive to improve, more approaches to the same problems.

    As long as it interoperates correctly (cellular/network communications, app/application support, etc.) I'm all for it - but I'll be waiting to hear more than a few firsthand accounts regarding usability before I plunk down my hard earned cash for one.

    Then again, my Android isn't exactly perfect. Neither is my daughter's iPhone. I don't know any Window phone users and I haven't heard a whole lot about Windows phone user experiences, but I don't get the impression that they're perfect either. Maybe with more competing options, somebody will move beyond "good enough" and at least try for "better".

  • Unless you're Japanese:

    Mozilla has ensured that unlike Google devices, non-US developers won’t be deprived of the devices. The phone will be shipped free of cost anywhere in the world except for Japan

    • Unless you're Japanese:

      Mozilla has ensured that unlike Google devices, non-US developers won’t be deprived of the devices. The phone will be shipped free of cost anywhere in the world except for Japan

      This is all explained in plain language here: http://www.mozilla.jp/firefox/... [mozilla.jp]

      Can't read that? Then it's probably not your concern. The short version is that government certification is pending, and interested parties are being prompted to sign up for an email notification when the Japanese government finally signs off on the devices.

  • Dang. Why is it that none of these devices are ever available on Verizon? Its the 2nd most popular carrier in the US, and yet we never get these straight-pay phones for it. Their "full price" phones you actually buy from them are prices basically at a premium/penalized rate to get you to renew the contract, while the $200-300 phones from Google and this are unavailable :(.

  • if your are targeting the 'average phone' this is a reasonable spec. Developing for the S5 only is a small market.

    This sounds a lot like my samsung galaxy s2x (aka hercules). Bought it xmas 2012 for $150. It has 16G and 8M camera. The screen is 4.5 x 850ishx480ish Super Amoled+ and it looks fantastic. Seriously. It compares well the the wifes N5. Si far no lag.

    Seems reasonable for a low cost entry to development to me.

  • I'm not found of my ZTE Open. The touchscreen sucks, Reception is abysmal and so on. Oh, and there is only one thing i hate more than the ZTE Open: FirefoxOS itself. I dont mind the feature set, i bought this for development and stuff, but FFOS (1.2, or 1.3 or 1.4) is just too unstable. I'm stuck at the lockscreen way too often, and given the current state of the development tools it's very hard to debug the source. My opinion regarding getting a FFOS phone is: Wait.
  • i want to try this OS, but dont know where to get it? somebody help me? mysite: http://phukhanghung.com.vn/ [phukhanghung.com.vn]

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