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MWC: Mozilla lines up $25 Firefox smartphone

Searches around the bargain bucket
Mon Feb 24 2014, 15:47

MOZILLA HAS USHERED IN a new era of mobile phones running the Firefox OS at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, including a prototype $25 model that will be aimed at emerging markets.

Mozilla like so many others is at MWC to brag, and it is bragging. There it has announced phone deals and partners, and is positively glowing about the good time it has been having since it decided to release Firefox OS last year.

It has announced seven new smartphones along with mobile operator support in countries including Argentina, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Panama.

Mozilla has shown off a prototype $25 phone that it built with assistance from Chinese mobile chip designer Spreadtrum, and told anyone that would listen that the SC6821 "redefines the entry level for smartphones in key growth markets".

Other firms including Alcatel, Huawei, ZTE and LG have lined up to support the Firefox mobile operating system, and one of them was on hand to say what a good thing this is.

ZTE EVP Adam Zeng said during the firm's press conference on Monday, "With Firefox OS, people all around the globe can finally get a fully-fledged smartphone at a reasonable price-point.

"Thanks to our partnership with Mozilla and Qualcomm, and with devices like the ZTE Open C, we're giving consumers what they want, at an affordable price, and we expect these prices to get even lower."

According to Mozilla, the Firefox OS has attracted a lot of support in the last year, and now counts "21 key operators". These include China Unicom, Hutchison Three Group, KDDI, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia Group and Telefónica,

"We're pleased to see the Firefox OS ecosystem grow so quickly as users, developers and partners come together to experience and build the future of mobile experiences," said Mozilla VP of Mobile, Andreas Gal.

"Firefox OS will continue to evolve and add more features to offer choice and customisation that is unmatched by any other smartphone. We're excited to see what other features and services will result from an open platform being contributed to by developers, partners and community around the world."

According to Spreadtrum, it has managed to get the Mozilla Firefox OS working on a number of its WCDMA and EDGE chipsets. µ


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