Mozilla has announced at the recent Mobile World Congress (MWC) that the company has formed a partnership with a number of leading mobile operators, including KDDI, LG U+, Telefónica and Verizon Wireless, on a new initiative to develop low cost devices that will be based on Firefox OS for first-time buyers, targeting primarily developing markets.
The companies are collaborating to create a new range of Firefox OS phones for a 2016 launch in various form factors - flips, sliders and slates - that balance the simplicity of a basic phone (calls, texts) with the more advanced features of a smartphone such as fun applications, content, navigation, music players, camera, video, LTE, VoLTE, email and Web browsing.
According to Mozilla, Firefox OS was chosen as the platform for this initiative for its open ecosystem which accords more flexibility for network operators and hardware manufacturers to provide a differentiated experience and to explore new business ventures, while providing users the performance, personalization and affordability they want want.
Li Gong, President, Mozilla
By leveraging Firefox OS and the power of the Web, we are re-imagining and providing a modern platform for entry-level phones. We're excited to work with operator partners like KDDI, LG U+, Telefonica and Verizon Wireless to reach new audiences in both emerging and developed markets and offer customers differentiated services.
Yasuhide Yamamoto, Vice President, Product Sector, KDDI
We have been gaining high attention from the market with Fx0, a high tier LTE based Firefox OS smartphone launched last December, and we have faith in the unlimited potential of Firefox OS. KDDI has been very competitive in the Japanese mature mobile phone market for decades, so we are confident that we can contribute to the Mozilla community in developing this new concept product.
Francisco Montalvo, Director, Telefónica Group Devices Unit
Telefónica is actively supporting Firefox OS, aligned with our strategy of bringing more options and more openness to our customers. Firefox OS smartphones are currently offered in 14 markets across our footprint and are helping to bring connectivity to more people who are looking for a reliable and simple user experience at affordable prices.