Mozilla's mobile OS, Boot2Gecko, to be demoed in February

Mozilla managed to create a web browser, Firefox, that become one of the most used by web surfers. Now Mozilla is going to be going after the mobile OS like iOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone with its own project, Boot2Gecko (B2G). In a response to a Twitter user, Mozilla's CTO Brendan Eich stated, "We'll be at MWC (World Mobile Congress) with partners..."

That likely means that Mozilla will be offering demos of B2G at the mobile phone trade show in Barcelona, Spain in late February. It's also possible that the "partners" mentioned by Eich are smartphone hardware companies that will use this new OS on their devices.

In a continuation of that same Twitter conversation, Eich said that Mozilla has been working fast on this new OS. In addition, he claimed, "a partner has its own substitute home screen up and running." Indeed the official road map for B2G shows that a product demo for the OS is scheduled for sometime in the first quarter of 2012, with a product launch set for the second quarter of this year.

As with Firefox, the plan is that B2G will be an open source project with public code available to check out right now. It will be interesting to see how this new OS will stack up compared to the other mobile operating systems that will be shown off at the Mobile World Congress.

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22 Comments

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I support what Mozilla does, and currently use Firefox and Thunderbird, but I fail to see the point of them trying to release a mobile OS as well... Why not focus on Firefox and Thunderbird and maybe release good mobile browsers for these mobile OS's? I just don't think Mozilla has the strength to muscle an OS into this market.

What an useless attempt to be famous.

Do one thing, but do it right. Don't do 943859345 things, when each of them is garbage. All Mozilla needs to do is focus on Firefox desktop and mobile and make them the best in the browser world. No one will use this OS, just like no one uses Chrome OS. Web Apps, at this point, aren't that much advanced, so current OSes can be abandoned.

gunky said,
this article could use a second pass, john.

Or the use of an editor to look it over: "Firefox, that become one". I get the whole unprofessional journalism spiel but the writer has 11 years of being a journalist under his belt. It's not unprofessional - it's just sloppy.

Sranshaft said,

Or the use of an editor to look it over: "Firefox, that become one". I get the whole unprofessional journalism spiel but the writer has 11 years of being a journalist under his belt. It's not unprofessional - it's just sloppy.

Here's an idea, report grammatical/factual errors via the report feature and keep the comments to actual comments on the content of the article. Simple? Yes.

Hollow.Droid said,

Here's an idea, report grammatical/factual errors via the report feature and keep the comments to actual comments on the content of the article. Simple? Yes.

Simple? Sure but so is running the article through a spell-check beforehand.

ExchangeAdm said,
There is not other mobile OS out there that can compete with iOS and Android. Even WP7 is struggling to get some market share.

The only reason Windows Phone is struggling to gain marketshare is because the carriers simply choose not to offer it - at least here in Australia. Walk into any store here and you'll see an entire wall dedicated to Android and maybe, if you're extremely lucky, see one Windows Phone device.

With Mozilla behind it, B2G might find a place in the niche market but I doubt it'll ever take over. Being open source and, I imagine, free to license might help with the lower end market though.

Sranshaft said,

The only reason Windows Phone is struggling to gain marketshare is because.....

I don't think that was ExchangeAdm's point.

ExchangeAdm said,
There is not other mobile OS out there that can compete with iOS and Android. Even WP7 is struggling to get some market share.

Amazing how you say that, yet every single member of staff at my office has one, and then a few Universities I have visited when going to give talks, heavily promote them, and a LOT of the students I spoke to had them. Adding to that, look at when Android started... hardly anybody had them, and people thought it would fail (including me, and my previous phone WAS an Android). WP7 is doing very well, you're just not bothering to look around you and going simply on your personal opinion that you do not like it, therefore it will fail.

As for this article, I'd be interested to see what Mozilla have come up with, as they will definitely be in for a tough start with all the existing competition on this market.

JustinN said,

Amazing how you say that, yet every single member of staff at my office has one, and then a few Universities I have visited when going to give talks, heavily promote them, and a LOT of the students I spoke to had them. Adding to that, look at when Android started... hardly anybody had them, and people thought it would fail (including me, and my previous phone WAS an Android). WP7 is doing very well, you're just not bothering to look around you and going simply on your personal opinion that you do not like it, therefore it will fail.

As for this article, I'd be interested to see what Mozilla have come up with, as they will definitely be in for a tough start with all the existing competition on this market.

Going off the market share stats. He's right. Going off market share stats, Windows (including WM6) sits with around between 1 and 5% market share (depending on the region, approximately 5% market share in the US, but less everywhere else). Compare that to Android's ~50% market share, and yes, looking at the numbers Windows Phone is struggling for market share at the minute.

ExchangeAdm said,
There is not other mobile OS out there that can compete with iOS and Android. Even WP7 is struggling to get some market share.

I have to agree. Microsoft, with their clout, will eventually gain traction, but I honestly don't feel that Mozilla is capable of doing so.

JustinN said,

Amazing how you say that, yet every single member of staff at my office has one, and then a few Universities I have visited when going to give talks, heavily promote them, and a LOT of the students I spoke to had them. Adding to that, look at when Android started... hardly anybody had them, and people thought it would fail (including me, and my previous phone WAS an Android). WP7 is doing very well, you're just not bothering to look around you and going simply on your personal opinion that you do not like it, therefore it will fail.

As for this article, I'd be interested to see what Mozilla have come up with, as they will definitely be in for a tough start with all the existing competition on this market.

IMO wp7 is far superior to android in many ways yet anytime I walked into an AT&T or Verizon store the salespeople would literally go out of their way to badmouth all wp7 devices and try to point me in the direction of android.

tsupersonic said,
Another mobile OS? No thanks. It will have to be really polished to compete against iOS, Android, WP7 and others.

It's a CLOUD mobile OS, something we barely have right now. Actually, to take your question, what we should be asking is why we need a mobile OS like iOS, Android, or WP7, AND a cloud OS like Chrome OS & Joli OS, when we can just have Boot 2 Gecko... I've been a big fan of this OS for a while & was afraid Neowin was gonaa leave out the cloud detail of it, thus causing comments like this... (No offense, Neowin/John Callaham.)

tsupersonic said,
Another mobile OS? No thanks. It will have to be really polished to compete against iOS, Android, WP7 and others.

There's a lot of stuff based off of Android in there already, and some significant additions from the Linux kernel.

I can easily see this being the cellphone equivalent of Linux, which I personally welcome with open arms.