ZTE to launch smartphones with Firefox OS in early 2013

ZTE to launch smartphones running Mozilla’s Firefox OS in early 2013. ZTE already has a portfolio of Android smartphones and Windows Phone devices under “Tania” brand. ZTE is hoping to diversify its portfolio of smartphones with the introduction of Firefox phones.

We know that Mozilla is working on an alternative operating system for smartphones from quite some time, first it was called Boot to Gecko and later it was renamed to Firefox OS. Firefox OS is built entirely using open standards, and smartphone capabilities are developed using HTML5.

Reuters is reporting that ZTE is cooperating with Mozilla to launch Firefox OS later this year or early next year. Speaking to Reuters ZTE spokesman David Dai Shu said “We are trying to increase our efforts in coming up with our own operating system, while introducing products based on Android.” “It’s all part of our wider plans to create a better balance of products using various operating systems. We won’t just rely on Android or Windows.”

He also said that they are working with a regional carrier outside of China to unveil products based on the new operating system. Mozilla announced partnerships with Alcatel and ZTE in July and also with some carriers including include Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia, Telefónica and Telenor. It is not clear at this stage with whom ZTE is partnering for the launch of Firefox OS powered phones. But according to Mozilla the first devices will be released in Brazil on Telefonica’s Vivo brand.