Spanish specialist mobile phone manufacturer Geeksphone has begun selling the first two commercially available smartphones based on Mozilla’s Firefox OS platform, the Keon and Peak, with both devices selling out within minutes.
The devices are aimed at developers planning to write applications for the new platform, and run a developer preview version of the Firefox OS software.
However, within minutes of the release, the company’s online store was taken down and replaced with a generic message announcing the devices had already sold out.
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“Due to the great demand of our phones at shop.geeksphone.com, the shop is currently out of stock,” a notice on the Geeksphone website states.
“The online sale will restart in the following hours. Thanks a lot and sorry for the inconveniences [sic].”
Geeksphone describes the entry-level orange-coloured Keon as: “A light and versatile, but also powerful developer preview device which has all the hardware features you need to start developing software for Firefox OS in a performance environment.”
Based on a single-core Snapdragon S1 processor running at 1GHz, it includes 4 GB ROM, 512 MB (RAM), a 3.5-inch screen, MicroSD, WiFi, a light and proximity sensor, a G-Sensor, GPS, MicroUSB and a built-in FM radio, with an official asking price of $US119.
The higher-end black, white and orange Peak features a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor running at 1.2 GHz, a 4.3-inch multi-touch screen, 8 megapixel back camera and 2 megapixel front camera, 4 GB ROM and 512 MB RAM, MicroSD, WiFi, a light and proximity sensor, a G-Sensor, GPS, MicroUSB and a built-in FM radio, with an official asking price of $US194.
In line with Mozilla’s strategy of offering entry-level devices for emerging markets, both devices are underpowered compared to Apple’s iPhone 5 or Samsung’s Galaxy S4, with the focus instead minimising cost.
As SmartCompany recently reported, consumer smartphones running the platform will be initially launched in Venezuela, Poland, Brazil, Portugal and Spain during June of this year.
Mozilla expects that to expand to 11 countries by the end of 2013, with Colombia, Hungary, Mexico, Montenegro and Serbia set to gain the smartphones running the platform later this year, while the Australian release is still unannounced although expected to come next year.
ZTE and Alcatel showed off the first consumer phones, dubbed the ZTE Open and the Alacatel One Touch Fire, at the 2013 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, while Optus, Telstra, LG, Huawei and Sony have all announced support for the low-cost smartphone platform.
The platform uses a mobile version of the Firefox web browser as a platform for running platform-independent web apps coded in HTML5, which have the same access to a smartphone’s underlying capabilities in the Firefox OS as native apps have under iOS and Android.
The idea is that apps will be written in web standard languages (including HTML5, CSS, and Java) and therefore be able to work on any device that supports Firefox.