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01 July 2013, 12:40

Firefox OS phones arrive in Spain

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ZTE Open
Zoom ZTE Open with Firefox OS
Telefónica has announced the commercial launch of the first Firefox OS phone, the ZTE Open, in Spain. The device will be available from tomorrow, 2 July, for 69 euros through the company's Movistar stores. The ZTE Open device has a 3.5" HVGA display, 256MB of RAM, 512MB of ROM and a 3.2 megapixel camera. For the price, Movistar are also including a 4GB microSD card. The device includes an FM radio, camera app with filters, Nokia HERE maps and Firefox web browser.

Telefónica will be following the Spanish launch in the coming weeks with launches in Colombia and Venezuela. "We believe that smart phones need to be more open and that the web is the platform for making this possible" said Telefónica España CEO Luis Miguel Gilpérez adding "This first open web device marks a significant milestone in making this possible. This is just the beginning as we plan to bring a wide range of Firefox OS devices to our customers."

Firefox OS sets out to ensure openness by being entirely based on HTML5 technologies; the entire phone environment is built using HTML 5, CSS and JavaScript so that there are no native applications on the device, unlike, for example, with Tizen. Applications for Firefox OS devices are also built as packaged HTML5 code with assets and resources either held locally on the device or downloaded over the web as needed.

Deutsche Telekom is expected to launch its first Firefox OS phone, the Alcatel One Touch Fire, in central European markets soon. The Alcatel device has similar specifications to the ZTE Open. The Firefox OS devices will be competing with low cost, similar or slightly higher specification Android phones, which have arrived in a number of markets in recent months. Mozilla is hoping that its content partners, including TMZ, AOL, Huffington Post, The Weather Channel and others and apps from Facebook, Airbnb, Twitter and SoundCloud will help it evolve an ecosystem in a competitive environment. Mozilla is also highlighting the search capability on Firefox OS where swiping right and entering a search term will give "a whole new customised phone experience based on your needs instantly".


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