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28 May 2013, 12:45

Foxconn reportedly building a Firefox OS smartphone

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Firefox OS icon According to Focus Taiwan, Taiwan's Hon Hai, which trades as Foxconn, and Mozilla will be holding a press conference on Monday 3 June to announced a partnership around the Firefox OS mobile device operating system. The event will take place in Taipei in the run up to the Computex trade show and will, says the news site, be the nineteenth wireless telecomms company to form a partnership with Mozilla.

Firefox OS is Mozilla's open source answer to the walled gardens of other mobile operating systems. It uses HTML5, CSS and JavaScript throughout to create not just the app experience, but the entire phone environment, including phone dialers, contacts, SMS messaging and stores. Developers can use a Firefox OS Simulator on the desktop version of Firefox to test applications currently – Geeksphone began shipping the first Firefox OS phones designed for developers last month.

According to Mozilla's own partner page, Mozilla already has 32 partners signed up for Firefox OS, Marketplace and Firefox for Android. Alcatel, Huawei, LG, Sony and ZTE are all believed to be preparing devices which use Firefox OS. Entry-level devices are expected to arrive in South America and some European markets in July. Mozilla's VP for mobile devices, Li Gong, recently suggested that Sony was considering a high end Firefox OS device.

The press invitation says that the companies plan to introduce new Firefox OS devices at the event and Focus Taiwan cites an "industry insider" who says that at least one of the devices is "likely to be a tablet". Foxconn has traditionally manufactured devices for other companies but is reported to be diversifying its business to sell its own brand of electronics and is investing in media content.



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