Mozilla’s open mobile operating system, Firefox OS, has thus far been pitched at the low end of the market, with announced launch territories for these sub-$100 phones including emerging markets such as Colombia and countries where the economy just isn’t doing so well, like Spain.
However, it looks like Deutsche Telekom (DT) has other ideas. We already knew it was going to launch the Alcatel One Touch Fire in Poland this week, but on Thursday it said the device would also find its way to Hungary, Greece and… Germany, Europe’s economic powerhouse right now.
These launches will take place in the Fall, and in the case of Germany the carrier brand will be DT’s youth-oriented Congstar brand. Pricing isn’t available yet for Germany, Hungary and Greece, but DT said the One Touch Fire would start at 1 zloty ($0.30) if bought “in combination with a very attractive tariff”, whatever that means.
I’d say the decision to try out Firefox OS in the German market is a clear sign that the operators – well, Deutsche Telekom certainly – may really be putting their money where their mouth is. They’ve said all along that they wanted to use Mozilla’s platform as a way of shaking up the Android/iOS duopoly, and now they’re going for the really mature markets, where that duopoly is strongest.
Now all we need is a Firefox OS launch in Europe’s most competitive market, the United Kingdom. That would really be trial by fire.