Tuesday, January 07, 2014

OpenStack 01/07/2014 (p.m.)

  • Tags: Firefox-OS

    • At CES 2014 in Las Vegas today, Mozilla announced its plans for Firefox OS this year. Having launched Firefox OS for smartphones in 2013, the company has now partnered with Panasonic to bring its operating system to TVs, and also detailed the progress that has been made around the tablet and desktop versions.
    • Mereby elaborated that current options are controlled by either Google or Apple, two major corporations that “hold all the strings.” As such, Android and iOS are not viable options for Panasonic, as the ecosystem is tightly controlled.

      With Firefox OS, however, Mereby argues that “anyone can compete”, as you can operate your own marketplace. Not only can Panasonic open up its own marketplace for apps and content, but those who want to build apps and sell content can bypass marketplaces and make their offerings directly to Firefox OS users.

    • While the partnership is not exclusive, Panasonic will be the first to release next-generation smart TVs powered by Firefox OS. Mozilla and Panasonic will work together to promote Firefox OS and its open ecosystem on the big screen.

      The plan is to leverage existing HTML5 and Web technologies used on PCs, smartphones, and tablets, to provide TVs with more personalized and optimized access to content and services through the Internet. Mozilla’s Web APIs for hardware control and operation will allow TVs to monitor and operate devices, such as emerging smart home appliances, inside and outside of the home.

      Basic functions such as menus and programming guides, which are currently written as embedded programs, will be written in HTML5, letting developers easily create applications for smartphones or tablets to remotely access and operate TVs. Mozilla also envisions personalized user interfaces with users’ favorites and new functions for multiple users sharing the same screen.

    • Last but not least, Mozilla wanted to underline how Firefox OS was coming to the desktop. Since the operating system is open source, anyone can modify it. VIA is doing just that: it’s making its own changes to create a more suitable version for the desktop, and Mozilla is bringing those commits back to its own repository.

      Furthermore, VIA today announced the availability of APC Paper and Rock, two new devices that offer a preview of Firefox OS running in a desktop environment. Rock is a motherboard which can be inserted into any barebone PC chassis while Paper is a standalone computer with its own case.

      Both are targeted at early adopters and developers wanting to help find, file, and fix bugs for VIA’s desktop version of Firefox OS. Paper and Rock are available with the same buildable source codes currently available on GitHub.

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