As mobile computing rolls into ever unknown and exciting futures, Firefox steps up and delivers a decent look at its upcoming mobile OS. Mozilla Firefox is not going to just sit by and watch, and as reported last year, Firefox’s attempt at a mobile OS is turning into more than just another way to play on your smartphone. At CES 2013 it plans to show how the OS will change the way we see and use apps.
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The concept of apps has always been to make our already uncomplicated lives even easier. Firefox OS developers have been working hard to turn traditional websites into an app when viewed on a mobile device, using manifest files. As Christian Heilmann, Mozilla’s lead developer on Firefox OS said: “App markets right now are like the old Yahoo directory, which Google came along and disrupted. This could be like that”. According to Cnet he also said that the OS will organise, via the manifest files, sites into the appropriate catogories.
Security is also on the hit list for Firefox OS, aiming to make it more accessbile and relevant to the end-user. A newly developed security and privacy permission system for apps will enable users to make more informed decisions. There are certain permissions that can be confusing, like permission to access your contacts or photos when that is clearly not needed, and Firefox OS aims to take a hybrid approach to these kind of permissions, and let users make informed decisions when an app is installed. Most apps ask the relevant permissions at installation, or not all. This can be confusing for users.
Just like it “disrupted” internet browsing years ago, Firefox’s attempt at an open source mobile OS might make them seem a but loony, but hey where would we be without the loonies.