Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 01:05 UTC
Mozilla & Gecko clones "It's no secret that Mozilla has been working on a mobile OS. Previously codenamed Boot2Gecko, the project focused on a purely HTML5 based system that worked in many ways like current mobile devices. As the project grew into Mozilla OS, the company has laid out a partnership with ZTE that will have real world devices in certain markets early next year. Testing for this OS had previously consisted of a compiled ROM that would be flashed over a handful of Android devices. Now, Mozilla has moved into full fledged product evaluation mode with their own custom developer phone." Looks decent - and a better solution for testers and developers than custom ROMs.
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nauty nauty!
by ikidunot on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 03:21 UTC
ikidunot
Member since:
2011-06-04

It's got rounded corners!

That's a No No!

Reply Score: 7

RE: nauty nauty!
by henderson101 on Mon 24th Sep 2012 14:56 UTC in reply to "nauty nauty!"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

GH GH
^ ^
There, you need those ;-)

Reply Score: 2

Comment by stabbyjones
by stabbyjones on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 07:41 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

As soon as they're for sale I'm buying one. I'll keep my galaxy nexus but Mozilla has really hit the nail on the head with Firefox os and i can't wait to use a phone developed specifically for the os.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by stabbyjones
by WorknMan on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 07:57 UTC in reply to "Comment by stabbyjones"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

As soon as they're for sale I'm buying one. I'll keep my galaxy nexus but Mozilla has really hit the nail on the head with Firefox os and i can't wait to use a phone developed specifically for the os.


Just curious... what does this OS do that Android currently doesn't? Will they have maps/gps apps built-in?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by stabbyjones on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 10:31 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

It's not about features vs other platforms. What I'm really excited about is that Mozilla keeps this as open as possible.

I don't expect it to be better than android which is why I'm keeping my android. But i feel similar to how i felt when i dropped Windows. You'll miss something when you change platforms but at some point, you just have to jump.

Hopefully there are more replicant phones on the horizon or at least more aosp devices to keep me using android in the mean time.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by stabbyjones
by NuxRo on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 10:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones"
NuxRo Member since:
2010-09-25

I agree, it has a certain feeling to it.

I want one!

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by stabbyjones
by moondevil on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 10:29 UTC in reply to "Comment by stabbyjones"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

Really?!

How different it is from the hugely successful WebOS?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by stabbyjones on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 10:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

Web os was as doa as the Nokia n9.

It also wasn't open til it was too late

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by stabbyjones
by moondevil on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 13:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

Same will happen to Mozilla OS, or do you think besides geeks anyone will care how open it is?

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Comment by stabbyjones
by Mrokii on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 14:57 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by stabbyjones"
Mrokii Member since:
2011-01-04

I'm not so sure. This creep of a CEO that destroyed WebOS was (imho) also responsible for destroying the miserable rest of HPs reputation. Contrary to that, the developers of Mozilla OS seem to have a bit more credibility, at least that's my impression. At least they were already able to show their abilities with Firefox, whereas HP hasn't really proven yet that it's capable (or even willing) to do anything useful with WebOS.

In short: Even though I own a Pre3 and like it, I don't believe that we'll see new hardware using WebOS, but I think Mozilla might be able to do it right.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Comment by stabbyjones
by moondevil on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 16:18 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by stabbyjones"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

There is a long way from showing a prototype handset to having the mobile operators selling them and the people on the street wanting to get such handsets.

Reply Score: 5

RE[6]: Comment by stabbyjones
by bitwelder on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 16:58 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by stabbyjones"
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

Already at this stage, the Firefox OS project has the backing of Telefónica (5th largest operator) and a few others carriers.

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Comment by stabbyjones
by zima on Wed 26th Sep 2012 01:21 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by stabbyjones"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Oh, one of those otherwise despised for their actions large telecoms?... and why would they do that?

Reminds me when we had Linux on netbooks and when Vista had less than stellar public perception - few large PC OEMs made some moves, but they didn't really push it, basically just desiring some more influence over MS direction.

And the telecoms probably very much miss the times when they were in total control (wrestled from them away by the emergence of the two new smartphone ecosystems) ...so, ultimately, it's likely that Mozilla is just being (more or less willfully) used by Telefónica as a bargaining chip of sorts WRT Google; better don't get your hopes up for much more.

Reply Score: 2

Name change?
by nibor on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 10:45 UTC
nibor
Member since:
2011-01-12

Wasn't it called Firefox OS after B2G? The article talks about Mozilla OS, so is the article wrong or did they change the name again?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Name change?
by CodeAndSyntax on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 11:31 UTC in reply to "Name change?"
CodeAndSyntax Member since:
2012-08-28

I think the article is trying to explain that Mozilla has its own developer phone, so they have given it an ad hoc name, (Mozilla OS developer phone) because it hasn't been officially announced. The OS is still Firefox OS. They are just explaining that they are using ZTE phones instead of booting ROMs on android phones that have nothing to do with the project.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Name change?
by swift11 on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 11:39 UTC in reply to "Name change?"
swift11 Member since:
2012-08-23

Yep, Firefox OS is the correct name.
Great to see Mozilla making progress with their phone:
HTML5 apps will be an open ecosystem, the best option to avoid a Google monopoly imo
http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/apps/partners/

Edited 2012-09-23 11:42 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Name change?
by moondevil on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 13:31 UTC in reply to "RE: Name change?"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

Sure, design once, hack in every platform.

Reply Score: 4

You can try it today
by zimbatm on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 12:57 UTC
zimbatm
Member since:
2005-08-22

You can run the desktop emulator today: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Mozilla/Boot_to_Gecko/Using... and start developing apps for the Mozilla Marketplace.

The platform is still quite buggy but it's expected for an early stage. From my experience the whole platform looks right and will be great once stabilised.

Reply Score: 1

Will not work.
by reduz on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 16:50 UTC
reduz
Member since:
2006-02-25

Applications are developed in HTML5. Apple tried this years ago and it didn't work. Developers have shown again and again to prefer native.
I'm sorry Mozilla, your dream of a web based OS where apps are HTML5 is too 2007.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Will not work.
by the_trapper on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 18:06 UTC in reply to "Will not work."
the_trapper Member since:
2005-07-07

Applications are developed in HTML5. Apple tried this years ago and it didn't work. Developers have shown again and again to prefer native.
I'm sorry Mozilla, your dream of a web based OS where apps are HTML5 is too 2007.


Apple tried this before the technology was ready. HTML5 has progressed a ton in that time frame. You have to think about how different technology becomes in 5 years time.

Today, the browsers are better, the hardware is much better, the HTML5 spec is better, in short everything is better. Give it a couple more years when "4G" connections are more widely available and things will be even better.

I'm cautiously optimistic about Firefox OS. I personally think it has a much brighter future than Windows Phone.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Will not work.
by reduz on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 19:33 UTC in reply to "RE: Will not work."
reduz Member since:
2006-02-25

No, it _doesn't_ matter at all. "ready" is too broad of a term and irrelevant to this situation. Let's recheck history.

-Palm moved from m68k to ARM, tried to still promote m68k development by running it in an emulator. Failed, developers preferred native. Then PalmOS6 was supposed to be native, but good old Palm died.
-J2ME sucked, no one did anything woth playing for it.
-WebOS was html based, developers didn't like it and pushed for native. Finally native was allowed but it was too late.
-XBox Indie Arcade is .net only, totally flopped. XBLA is native, was successful.
-Nintendo tried something similar by allowing you to run javascript games in the browser, failed.
-Nokia n-gage was java, failed.
-iPhone was also supposed to be html5 only based, developers complained and then went native.
-Android was Java only, developers complained and Google had to release the NDK.
-Microsoft released WP7, .net only, flopped. WP8 is native.
-Flash is ActionScript, now when fading in popularity, Adobe concedes and goes native with Alchemy.

After ALL THIS, Firefox has the balls to go and announce their HTML5-only based phone.
I'm sorry, denying developers of native access simply doesn't work. It never did. It's been proven again and again and again ad infinitum. C is still the most popular programming language, period. It's one of those things that shouldn't be that difficult to understand by most people and companies, yet they keep thinking they can reinvent the wheel.

Edited 2012-09-23 19:35 UTC

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Will not work.
by Nelson on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 19:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Will not work."
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

WP7 has over 100k apps. In who's reality is that a failure ?

Also WP8 will still primarily use C# with C++ being used by games and for WinRT components.

In Windows 8 where devs can use C++, 80% of Store apps are C# and XAML based.

As someone who participated in XBLIG, the problems was not the choice of C#, but rather boneheaded decisions by Microsoft with regards to cost, agility, and awareness. It was just a very badly run program.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Will not work.
by reduz on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 20:34 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Will not work."
reduz Member since:
2006-02-25

Who cares about the amount of apps? Blackberry app world had plenty too. Quality is what matters and WP7 was a flop. The fact is, Quality apps and games are almost always native. It's a rule.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Will not work.
by Nelson on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 21:23 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Will not work."
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

The amount of apps show that devs don't have a problem writing apps, and that there is tremendous momentum behind the platform. In fact, the growth rate has outpaced both Android and iOS.

How exactly does the quality suck? They're fast, nice looking, and mostly enjoyable to use.

In fact, this article shows that at the very least, the apps are comparable to their iOS counterparts.

http://pocketnow.com/2012/06/17/which-looks-better-a-comparison-bet...

I would appreciate it if you stopped making stuff up.

Edited 2012-09-23 21:26 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Will not work.
by Lennie on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 22:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Will not work."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

A lot has changed and almost any API Mozilla makes for Firefox is also proposed at the W3C and discussed there to be specified as a proper standard.

Which means even if Firefox OS does not work out, all the APIs will be made available for others to work on (so the new Tizen, WebOS or whatever does not have to reinvent the wheel).

It also will allow browsers to adopt these standards.

Pretty much everything you can imagine has al ready been standardised, proposed as a standard or is being heavily worked on.

Just have a look at WebRTC for example.

There has been massive leaps since Apple tried to promote WebApps

Edited 2012-09-23 22:58 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Will not work.
by swift11 on Mon 24th Sep 2012 03:04 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Will not work."
swift11 Member since:
2012-08-23

There has been massive leaps since Apple tried to promote WebApps


Agreed. River Trail is an interesting project, for instance:
https://github.com/rivertrail/rivertrail/wiki

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Will not work.
by Lennie on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 20:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Will not work."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I do have a question, why did you mention 4G connections ?

HTML5-apps don't depend on the Internet, it's not a glorified website. They install like apps on any other platform.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Will not work.
by the_trapper on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 23:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Will not work."
the_trapper Member since:
2005-07-07

The apps have to get from the Internet to the phone, so until 4G connections become widespread, there are constraints on what is a reasonable size for HTML5 apps to be.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Will not work.
by Lennie on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 23:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Will not work."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I don't see why HTML5 apps are different from other apps in that regard.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Will not work.
by Soulbender on Mon 24th Sep 2012 03:32 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Will not work."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

The apps have to get from the Internet to the phone


It's the same for non-HTML5 apps.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 19:36 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

Their efforts are great, but I'd rather prefer the free stack to push deeper, since Firefox OS still relies on Android core stack. When it'll run on top of Wayland - that would be even better.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by shmerl
by Lennie on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 20:26 UTC in reply to "Comment by shmerl"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

It does not depend on Android, it depends on Linux and drivers. They just choose to support the Android Linux kernel and drivers to start with because of what is available on the market.

It's just the kernel and some Linux userspace like wpa_supplicant with their browser engine on top. There is nothing of Android specifically that gets used.

You can see it here:

https://wiki.mozilla.org/B2G/Architecture

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Mon 24th Sep 2012 00:33 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

https://wiki.mozilla.org/B2G/Architecture#Gecko:_Graphics

gNativeWindow = new android::FramebufferNativeWindow();
sGLContext = GLContextProvider::CreateForWindow(this);


This looks too Android specific to me. They of course can extend that to be more flexible, since they tried to depend on Android as little as possible - but I think at present it's the only option.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by Lennie on Mon 24th Sep 2012 08:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

It does not matter what they do at the lower level, they don't depend on it and the HTML5-apps definitely don't depend on it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Mon 24th Sep 2012 15:36 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

It does matter what they do on the lower level, in regards to where their OS can run. And right now it runs on hardware with Android lower stack. It'll require adaptations to make it run on normal Linux stack, that's what I was saying above. I'd rather see it running on Wayland.

Edited 2012-09-24 15:37 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by shmerl
by Lennie on Mon 24th Sep 2012 16:18 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by shmerl"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Gecko already supports many backends, it does not depend on the lower level Adnroid, they just added Android as an other one.

Also wayland hasn't even done a 1.0 release yet (I wouldn't be surprised if they will this year though).

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Mon 24th Sep 2012 17:14 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Right, it doesn't depend on it. Just in order to run somewhere else - still they'll need to do some work (which they didn't yet).

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by swift11 on Tue 25th Sep 2012 01:02 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
swift11 Member since:
2012-08-23

Tizen runs on Wayland. Mozilla had to build their OS on existing foundations in order to find a Chinese OEM.

Edited 2012-09-25 01:04 UTC

Reply Score: 1