It is anything but a secret that smart phones are often just crazy expensive, even in the countries with a high level of income. So, one has always to choose from possessing a high quality device costing like a little car – or saving money and accepting a slow modest phone. Firefox OS creators promise to solve this problem and to offer medium quality smart phones at prices of usual feature phones. Firefox OS should give users the possibility to get a smart phone experience on relatively cheap hardware that is congruous to a middle class Android device.
The second reason is not less pretentious than the first one. Firefox OS claims to give a dare to the leaders of the mobile market – Apple and Google – and to radically change things. Now, mobile applications, closed platforms, proprietary application stores and very strict rules for developers negatively affect the mobile market and restrict users’ possibilities. All these limitations enforce people to choose a single one operating system and a device supporting it. At that time, Web has evolved and can work almost at any hardware in the same way. Firefox OS aims to use this ubiquity of web technologies to give users the opportunity to use the same application on any device possessing a browser.
Mozilla expects that this development will lead to the creation of numerous online stores, where mobile application developers would offer their products directly to end users.
So, Firefox OS is trying to transfer the freedom of the Internet in a mobile ecosystem, enabling everyone to create web applications as easily as they create a web page. That sounds great, doesn’t it? But I’m not sure whether the idea of Firefox OS reaches the set goals exactly.
Mozilla seems not to acknowledge that guidelines, standards, and closeness just contribute to the success of a system. Such uniformity supports the viability of a mobile OS and protects (or at least, tries to protect) its users from negligent work and malware. Otherwise, each developer would try to grab the biggest piece of the pie and any compatibility would be out of the question.
What do you think? Is such freedom as promised by Firefox OS really a breakthrough in the mobile world? Or may it easily come to a situation like in the Tower of Babel legend?