Firefox OS is repeating the mistakes of others and hoping for a different outcome

Firefox OS is repeating the mistakes of others and hoping for a different outcome

I feel bad for Mozilla, I really do. Competitors and the march of time are closing in quicker than it can raise its defenses. Her crown jewel, Firefox, is feeling the squeeze as Chrome encroaches on its hard-won territory and mobile offensives have proven largely fruitless. This leaves Mozilla in an awkward position: that of out-of-touch industry stalwart. Being late to the mobile game and Apple’s reluctance to open up iOS to third-party browsers has left the company boxed in. (Developers can create browsers for iOS so long as they use the same rendering engine as Safari — a deal breaker for the Gecko-based Firefox.)

Mozilla has responded by borrowing a page from the Google (Chrome)book: build an operating system that is essentially nothing more than a browser. Firefox OS is yet another mobile platform built entirely on HTML5 that treats websites as apps. In fact, websites are the “apps” — there is no such thing as native code. And while there are legitimate arguments for such a model, I’ve yet to see it convincingly executed. We’ve caught glimpses of Mozilla’s smartphone offspring before, but Mobile World Congress 2013 was really the proper coming out party. Finally we’ve been given a chance to touch it, see it action and peek at the hardware it’ll be running on. Unfortunately, at this cotillion, Mozilla failed to make a good case for anyone to court its debutante.

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Firefox OS is repeating the mistakes of others and hoping for a different outcome

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