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Geeksphone Firefox OS phones go on sale today

by Mark Tyson on 23 April 2013, 10:00

Tags: Mozilla, Sony (NYSE:SNE), LG Electronics (066570.KS), Huawei, ZTE, PC

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qabvd5

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Spain-based Geeksphone has started to sell its Firefox OS developer smartphones via its web store today. Two models are on offer, the Keon and the Peak, priced at 110 Euros and 179 Euros respectively, including tax. The more expensive phone has a slightly faster processor and a better quality, larger screen among its advantages.

These Geeksphone models are the first Firefox phones to market. Much bigger and more well known companies have publicly committed to making and selling their own Firefox OS phones in the not-too-distant future; Sony, LG, Huawei, ZTE and Alcatel included. TheNextWeb reports that some of these companies will start to sell their non-developer mass market Firefox OS phones from June in territories including Spain, Portugal, Poland, Brazil and Venezuela.

This new pair of Geeksphones does already seem to have received unexpected amounts of interest. I’ve read that the sales page is now live, however it seems to have collapsed under the strain of too many interested browsers and shoppers. Let’s hope Geeksphone can sort out this unfortunate problem as they may be missing out on a large number of hardware sales. This small Spanish startup is purportedly able to manufacture up to 5,000 Geeksphones per day. Shipping for any devices ordered will commence this week.

We saw the Keon and Peak revealed at the end of January so none of the hardware here is a surprise. As a reminder the specs are as follows:

The Keon model

  • CPU Qualcomm Snapdragon S1 1Ghz
  • UMTS 2100/1900/900 (3G HSPA)
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900 (2G EDGE)
  • Screen 3.5″ HVGA (320x480) Multitouch
  • 3 MP Camera
  • 4GB ROM, 512 MB RAM
  • MicroSD, Wifi N, Light and proxmity Sensor, G-Sensor, GPS, MicroUSB
  • 1580 mAh battery
  • Over the air updates
  • Unlocked, add your own SIM card

The Peak model

  • CPU Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 1.2Ghz x2.
  • UMTS 2100/1900/900 (3G HSPA).
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900 (2G EDGE).
  • Screen 4.3″ qHD (540x960) IPS Multitouch.
  • Camera 8 MP (back) + 2 MP (front).
  • 4 GB (ROM) and 512 (RAM).
  • MicroSD, Wifi N, Light and proxmity Sensor, G-Sensor, GPS, MicroUSB, Flash (camera).
  • Battery 1800 mAh.

Many people will argue that we don’t need another Smartphone OS. However, as you read above, Mozilla’s mobiles have got some seriously big manufacturers like Sony and LG committed to making phones. Also the other vital half of the equation, mobile networks with their associated distribution channels, are also well represented. Many of the markets Mozilla is aiming at still have a relatively low penetration of smartphones vs feature phones.

If you are interested in the apps currently available for a Firefox OS mobile you can go here and have a browse, you will see such apps as Twitter, Soundcloud, Pulse and Accuweather highlighted. Also developers, the intended buyers of the Keon and Peak, are well catered for in the Firefox Marketplace Developer Hub.

UPDATE: The Geeksphone Store is back online and the shopping basket is working.



HEXUS Forums :: 5 Comments

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512mb of RAM? My S3 is slow with 1gb :/ This phone is not what I was expecting.
hoggson
512mb of RAM? My S3 is slow with 1gb :/ This phone is not what I was expecting.


Its not running Android so the comparison is pointless. Dare say Firefox runs very well on 512mb ram. Once Android did too.
Really? My Celeron 400 is dog slow with 256MB of RAM when it's running Windows XP: it flies with a lightweight linux distro. Your S3 runs android, these phones run Firefox OS. It's a completely different beast, and without doing a side by side comparison you can't tell how it's going to perform.

EDIT: just had a quick play with the firefox simulator, and I reckon it might do everything I want in a smartphone. At ~ £100, I'm very tempted...
I'll be honest, I've always disliked android, its bulky, slow and I've not see any code from it that made me think hmm, clever!. The fact an 800mhz device that is years old gives a snappier consistent performance than my S3 really doesn't help (until you run a game, browse the web, then the s3 shines!).

I don't like the Apple effect of having really expensive smartphones, I think having some proper competition down at the lower end is a really good thing. I'm half tempted to buy one just to play.
Definitely welcome more competition but android's tie ins with gmail, google calendar, contacts, maps, google drive, music etc etc are just so significant. I just can't see (relatively) tiny Mozilla being able to compete with such heavy weight apps for a very long time...