Google
 

Aardvark Daily

New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 19th year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

Content copyright © 1995 - 2014 to Bruce Simpson (aka Aardvark), the logo was kindly created for Aardvark Daily by the folks at aardvark.co.uk



Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

Oh, a FireFox phone. Why?

23 January 2013

According to reports in today's media, a new phone is getting readied for release, and this one uses the FireFox OS and browser.

The first thing I thought of when I read this was "why?"

Don't get me wrong, I love competition in the marketplace and a healthy area of technology always has several competing platforms. This type of competition helps hone products and ensures that customers get the best possible value.

So why aren't I "over the moon" that we're seeing an alternative to the iOS, Android, Windows 8 options?

Perhaps it's because we already have enough choice in the mobile sector and when the options become too plentiful, competition can work to lessen the value of products on offer.

Do we really *need* yet another mobile OS platform?

Mozilla, the makers of FireFox OS, claim that their system is open source and will adhere to the essential web standards, HTML5 in particular.

However, just like Android, it is based on Linux so probably isn't as revolutionary as you might hope.

The point of distinction between Mozilla's offering and the rest is that it won't be supporting native apps. Instead, the mobile FireFox OS will be solely reliant on HTML5 to deliver the same type of functionality and extensions that is provided by the growing array of apps on other systems.

The bonus of this approach (according to Mozilla) is that the HTML5 code should be totally platform independent and easier to develop -- albeit the business model for generating revenues from these bits of code is yet to be explained. I suspect that an honesty-box system is going to be "it".

So will we see developers and users flock to this new mobile and its totally open operating system?

Well those who are religiously attached to the open-source philosophy will likely get onboard pretty quickly -- but those who see the creation of apps as a means of earning a living may be less inclined to get involved.

Write a clever, popular app for the iPhone or Android platform and you can earn a snot-load of money in a very short space of time, thanks to the "marketplace" concept where developers can charge a fee for each download. If you're delivering the same functionality without an easy way to prevent folk from copying it and without being paid per download then the business proposition becomes somewhat less attractive.

Then there's the hardware to consider...

Will the FireFox OS phone be as slim, as light, as bright, or even fashionable as a piece of plastic? If the hardware isn't up to the game then it doesn't matter what software is running on it -- it simply won't sell into a market as fickle as the mobile sector.

I wish Mozilla well with their venture and I do hope it succeeds -- however, I won't be holding my breath. This time, I'd *love* to be wrong though.

Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

Have your say on this...

PERMALINK to this column

Oh, and don't forget today's sci/tech news headlines


Rank This Aardvark Page

 

Change Font

Sci-Tech headlines

 


Apart from the kind support of the sponsor, Aardvark Daily is largely a labour of love that involves many hours of hard work each month. If you appreciate the content you find here (or even if you don't) then please visit the sponsor and also feel free to gift me a donation using the button above.

Remember, this is purely a gift, you'll get nothing other than a warm fuzzy feeling in return.


Features:

Beware The Alternative Energy Scammers

The Great "Run Your Car On Water" Scam

 

The Missile Man The Missile Man book

Previous Columns

OMG! Arthur C Clarke was right?
One of my favourite scifi movies of all time was 2001, A Space Odyssey -- a Stanley Kubrick movie based on Arthur C Clarke's short story The Sentinel...

Look, another foot (to shoot)
I've written countless columns berating the recording and movie industries for their farcical approaches to dealing with the issue of piracy on the internet...

Ello Ello, wot's going on ere then?
Facebook is "so last year" according to many young folk....

Clone killing software
What would happen if your PC automatically downloaded (as part of its automatic updates) a driver that killed several of your peripherals stone dead...

Don't get too successful online
There are a lot of "fan pages" on the internet...

How clever is that?
Mobile phones... everyone has one...

Eco-upgrading your car
Most people think that modern cars are about as fuel-efficient as you can get...

FBI angry that encryption is being used
Encryption is a great tool for those who want to preserve their right to privacy...

Online security now just a joke?
Anyone who has been lulled into a false sense of security regarding the safety of their data or computer systems while online probably got a very nasty shock this week...

SDR, the new crystal set?
Hands up everyone who knows how radio works...