Mozilla has confirmed plans to bring its own mobile platform to market in 2013, and has now disclosed the official name, along with the vendor and network operator partners who will deliver the first handsets.
To be known as Firefox OS for mobile devices, the platform is the result of Mozilla's "Boot to Gecko" project. Announced last year, the mobile OS is based on open web standards with applications developed using HTML5, and is intended to enable capable entry-level smartphones at affordable price points.
The first Firefox OS handsets will be manufactured by ZTE and Alcatel, under its One Touch brand. They are set to debut early in 2013 in Brazil on the Vivo mobile network, a subsidiary of Telefónica.
Other network operator partners around the globe include Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia and Telenor.
However, a spokesperson for O2, Telefónica's subsidiary in the UK, told V3 that the firm had no plans to bring the handsets to this country, although such a move could not be ruled out in future.
"In the short term, our efforts are focused on Latin America, where we see the greatest opportunity for these devices," the spokesperson said.
Firefox OS aims to unlock many of the current limitations of web development on mobile devices by exposing the underlying capabilities of a phone to HTML5 applications. This removes much of the middleware layer that characterises other smartphone platforms, according to Mozilla.
"The introduction of the open mobile OS continues the Mozilla mission to promote openness, innovation and opportunity on the web for users and developers. As billions of users are expected to come online for the first time in the coming years, it is important to deliver a compelling smartphone experience that anyone can use," said Mozilla chief executive Gary Kovacs.
Mozilla said it is committed to ensuring the project is fully open, and as part of this, the reference implementation of its web API set is being submitted to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards body.
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