Chinese firm Huawei have announced their first smartphone that will run Mozilla’s Firefox OS at Mobile World Congress 2014, the Huawei Y300. This is may cause confusion amongst some, as Huawei already have a Y300 phone on the market, the Huawei Ascend Y300 – which was a popular Android device that was praised due to its decent performance at a sub-£100 pricepoint.
It is not just the name that is shared between Huawei’s Android phone and their first Firefox OS device, as the specs are very similar.
The Y300 will be a 4inch smartphone with 512MB of RAM, a dual-core 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 4GB of internal memory (with an option to expand this through a micro SD card), a 5MP rear camera and a VGA front facing camera.
You may ask why bother putting a front camera on a phone at all if it is going to be a VGA, in this day that will instantly cause a shudder from some consumers, but it is rare for a feature phone priced smartphone to have a front camera at all.
It should also be noted that this will very much be a phone marketed towards emerging economies, most Firefox OS devices have fit into this category thus far, and it is likely that the Y300 will go down the same route.
Despite this if the Y300 does hit more developed markets it may perform well, despite it’s sub par spec list – if Huawei could mirror the reviews they received for the Ascend Y300 (which is often praised as one of the best budget smartphone around) then maybe it could shift a few units amongst penny watching punters in the like of the UK and the US.
The Huawei Y300 does break one trend of current Firefox OS devices, it features an acceptable screen resolution. Sure the 800×480 would be laughed off by many but it should be enough to remove the unnerving ‘fuzz’ that features on the screens of some previous Firefox OS devices.
Firefox OS is the name of web giants Mozilla’s mobile operating system, it’s release over the last year has been somewhat underwhelming, with the £50 ZTE Open smartphone that was sold exclusively on eBay being an example of a budget phone not being done very well.
It would seem that Mozilla haven’t been disheartened by this and look set to continue to offer the platform to manufacturers that wish to develop handsets to the developing world, as they have come out swinging at MWC this year, a $25 smartphone was even announced yesterday.
There is no definite details on availability, release date or price for the Y300 thus far but going on the specs it is expected to be another Firefox smartphone sold at feature phone price, possibly coming in at the sub-£100 mark as it’s Ascend brethren, and is rumoured to be hitting retail withing the next couple of months.