Blast, just as we started seeing actual Firefox OS phones in South Africa the company has decided that they’re going to be changing their focus when it comes to handsets. Oh, they’ll still be making them but they’re not going to be focusing on affordable handsets quite as much.
An email sent last week by Mozilla CEO Chris Beard breaks down what is happening to their handsets. A plan, known as Ignite, is apparently the next phase of the Firefox OS and will wind up “…focusing more on the user experience, and tying Firefox OS more deeply into our mission and our community.”
“We will build phones and connected devices that people want to buy because of the experience, not simply the price.”
There aren’t many specifics on how they intend to do this but their plans for a $25 (R300) smartphone seems to have gone out the window. After all, how do you compete with Apple and Samsung when their most expensive handset are also their best-sellers?
There are signs that they might become more compatible with Android in the near future. Beard wrote “And to bridge this app gap between user expectations and the readiness of the ecosystem, we will explore implementing Android app compatibility, within a framework that keeps our long-term focus on the Web as the platform across desktop, mobile and connected devices.”
As we saw in our review of the Alcatel Fire-E, Mozilla’s OS faces some problems and this is one way that we see that they stand a better chance of competing with the likes of Android. True, it means becoming part of it in a way but that’s how most missionary actions work before conversion takes place.