Mozilla in recent time has started to expand the Firefox brand from being desktop computer centric to something that is available for other device types as well. Engineers started to work on Firefox for mobile devices such as smartphones for instance, and also on Firefox OS, formerly known as Boot to Gecko or B2G. The latter is an open source operating system designed for mobile devices such as smartphones or tablet computers.
First devices are expected to be released at the end of 2012 or at the latest in the first quarter of 2013. Video demonstrations have been posted on sites such as YouTube that highlight some of the operating system's functionality.
Mozilla engineer Myk Melez released a prototype Firefox OS test environment that interested users can install as an add-on for the Firefox web browser. Please note that the add-on has a size of about 50 Megabytes, and that it is unstable on Windows. It crashed on a 64-bit Windows 7 system right after start. Good news in this regard is that it does not crash the underlying browser, only the B2G window that it spawns.
I can't really say anything about the functionality due to the crashes. One option that appears to be available is to install a web page as an app. The add-on is less crash-prone on Mac and Linux systems though. Windows users will have to wait for a new version of the add-on so that they can test it on their operating system as well.
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.