2013 will mark the end of Android and iOS dominance
What has a beginning has an end. Those were the words that came into my mind after watching a news feature on one of the International Television channel revealing the push to bring Firefox devices to the masses will start with Deutsche Telekom in Poland and through Telefonica in Spain and Latin America. The age and era when Android and Apple’s iOS have remained unshaken as the two major providers of operating systems for mobile devices is finally coming to an end. The two face a huge challenge from open source operating systems Ubuntu and Mozilla’s Firefox OS that have set themselves high goals.
My opinion is based on the fact that the two operating systems have found several partner mobile phone manufacturers from all over the world who are counting on these systems as part of their business strategy and that is no mean achievement. In other terms, the two mean business and very few will argue with me on that. Both operating systems use HTML5, meaning users can create their own web apps without too much ado. Multitasking is the key selling point with the mobile version of Ubuntu, being worked on by developers at Canonical who have severally repeated that a lot of the action is on the edge of the display and in a series of wheels with the goal to allow people to do various tasks at once. As developer, I can tell you the latest developments have highlighted that the two operating systems are independent from Apple and Google and will no doubt be a breath of fresh air for us developers.
Interestingly, all basic functions, from texting to social networks, will be pre-installed on the two operating systems something which the existing platforms lack while apps will be accessible in an integrated Firefox Marketplace. That will be a game changer. Most apps work well, though we programmers will need some patience if we want to use complicated graphics and specific hardware components. The Firefox OS operating system is relatively sleek and has proved to be popular with low cost smartphones that have had problems with newer versions of Android. Firefox mobiles first generation have working memory of just 256 gigabytes, relatively slow processors and just one processor core which is enough low end market consumer. This year will mark an interesting turn in Operating System battle to control the ever growing market for smartphones.