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Google's Project Ara is shaping up to be a really cool look at the future of Android. These modular phones have components, like cameras and processors, that you can swap out to customize your device. Smartphone maker Yezz is the first company outside of Google to build a Project Ara phone. Let's take a look at it. You get to pick which kind of processor, storage and battery the phone has by picking from the available components. Everything is held together with the phone's aluminum case. All of the components of the phone are interchangeable. Here, we see a screen that you can slide onto the front of the module.
A big selling point of the Project Ara phones is that you can decide which components go where, The camera doesn't need to be at the top, nor does the headphone jack need to be at the bottom, You can carry around more components than will fit in the phone so that you can swap in when you need them, That means wall-e iphone case you could add an extra battery in place of the camera when you need more juice, All the familiar features are available with the Yezz Project Ara phone, like a headphone jack, Each of the slide-in pieces can also be customized with different colors or designs that you pick, like a favorite photo..
The partnerships will mean Firefox OS phones in the United States, but Verizon isn't the only partner. Others announced here at the Mobile World Conference show are Japanese carrier KDDI, South Korea's LG U+ and Spain's Telefonica, and the first phones from the deals are expected in 2016. The partnerships are notable given that Firefox OS so far has largely competed in developing countries where smartphone penetration is relatively low and where Firefox OS's low-end hardware needs can mean more affordable products. When Mozilla first announced Firefox OS two years ago, it listed Sprint as a partner and planned to reach the United States, but it backed off that plan after a few months.
Spreading into wealthy countries could help encourage more programmers to support Firefox OS, And that, in turn, could help Mozilla advance its Firefox OS mission: to break down some of the barriers that keep customers locked into the iOS or Android technologies, Success would mean Google and Apple app stores would cease being a gateway to software and content, that apps purchased once wouldn't have to be purchased again if customers changed smartphone OSes, and that programmers could write an app just once with Web technologies that span not just iOS, Android, and Firefox OS, but also Windows Phone, BlackBerry OS, Tizen, Ubuntu wall-e iphone case and any other mobile operating system that arrives tomorrow..
Firefox OS has gradually spread to higher-end smartphones with the mainstream slab-of-glass touchscreen design, but many of the Firefox phones stemming from the new partnerships will embrace earlier phone designs that flip or slide open or that have hardware keyboards, said Mozilla Chief Technology Officer Andreas Gal. "The operators see customer demand for these form factors. With Firefox OS we have the ability to actually serve that market," Gal said. "You'll see us broadening the categories we're bringing Firefox OS to."The phones still won't take on Android and iOS flagship devices head-on. They'll be geared chiefly for entry-level customers upgrading from feature phones, Gal said. But those customers still want apps, fast mobile networks, and other modern features, he said.
"We see less and less competition in the entry-level segment with Android trending higher and higher in specs and Nokia Asha kind of disappearing," Gal wall-e iphone case said, Mozilla needs every ally it can muster to take on the giants of the smartphone OS market, Apple's iOS and Google's Android, The former is the foundation for an immensely profitable business, and the latter powers most of the smartphones shipped today, Going by market share, Firefox OS hasn't been a success, said Annette Zimmermann, research director for Gartner's consumer markets and technology group, "In a 1.2 billion smartphone unit market in 2014, they only shipped a bit over 2 million units," she said, and only a limited number of handset makers -- chiefly ZTE, Huawei, and TCL's Alcatel brand -- have embraced the OS, though that's changing with newer, bigger, higher-end models..
But what about progress with Mozilla's broader ambitions, to infuse the mobile technology with the openness that prevails on the Web? "I don't see any," Zimmermann said. Gal is patient, though. "There are hundreds of millions of phones being sold every year -- more than billion. It takes time to grow in that market," Gal said. Firefox OS phones are now available through 15 carriers in 30 countries, Gal said, and the Orange deal will increase that by another 13. Mozilla said that each month, about 3 million people visit its app store, the Firefox Marketplace, and download millions of apps.
And Mozilla's initial low-end thrust -- including a major new partnership with Orange to bring Firefox OS to 13 countries in the Middle East and Africa announced here -- could be helpful in the longer run, Analyst firm GfK believes smartphone growth rates will slow in 2015 "due to developed markets reaching saturation point," said analyst Kevin Walsh, As a result, growth will shift to developing economies that buy cheaper phones, "We forecast emerging regions [will] drive growth wall-e iphone case in 2015 as smartphones further penetrate lower price points," he said, chiefly those costing less than $100..