Mozilla has planned to come up with a $25 smartphone; $25 for smartphone, ridiculous isn’t it? Well, yes but it’s true. Mozilla shall roll out its smartphone by the end of the year as reported by Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.
The smartphone will run Mozilla’s HTML5 web-based mobile operating system, Firefox OS. This would definitely serve as an important step from a feature phone to a smartphone especially for customers that are with budget constraints as it will retail for $25.
Even one dollar means a lot to the customers in emerging countries as said by Mozilla Chief Operating Officer Gong Li in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. In countries as such it is difficult to sell smartphones that cost more than $50. So, in order to bridge the gap between a feature phone and a smartphone, $25 smartphone would definitely make a place.
This ultra-inexpensive smartphone shall ship to India and Indonesia later this year. Those handsets will be manufactured by two Indian companies.
They will run Mozilla’s HTML5 web-based mobile operating system, Firefox OS.
In the contrary of being cheap, there also lies one big problem for Mozilla. If you are an Android or Apple iOS user being privileged by top-notch hardware and the myriad apps available for either system, why would you ever think of switching it towards an upstart, unproven OS? It’s not compelling is it?
The competitors of Firefox OS have already influenced a whole crowd of the market. As of quarter of 2013, Android OS had 78% of smartphone users and Apple’s iOS had 18%. The rest were splatted between BlackBerry, Windows Phone and various small-fry operations. So, there are less chances of converting users towards it.
At present context, Mozilla is focused on bringing smartphone prices in emerging markets down to $25. This will help them compete on cost with feature phones, and hence, people will jump at the chance to upgrade. And when they grab it, a bunch of people would be using Firefox OS already.
This $25 device shall cover things like photo sharing, e-mail, social networking apps, mapping, games and media playback. But complex apps that require heavy processing shall never show up on a Firefox OS device.
With a budgeted smartphone for just $25, Mozilla is likely to sell a lot of smartphones but lets not expect it be a cakewalk as it is also likely that other competitors of Mozilla will be dropping the cost of their handsets to compete.