Firefox OS is the only one of this year’s new smartphone operating systems that’s installed on a phone you can actually buy, and now, Mozilla has announced the arrival of an update, taking the software to version 1.1. While we’re still waiting for Sailfish, Tizen and all the rest to make their debut, Mozilla’s surging ahead.
The company has detailed what it calls the highlights of version 1.1 on its website, and it’s a comprehensive list which will certainly make the software more user-friendly. Here’s what really stands out:
Push notifications: A much needed addition to Firefox OS. The API is now available for developers to add a notification feature to their apps.
Keyboard Autocorrect: As it stands now, the keyboard doesn’t let you know when you misspell a word, and doesn’t offer any alternatives. That’s all going to change in version 1.1.
Contact Management: There are several new features here, the best being the chance to import Gmail and Hotmail contacts. Firefox OS can only import from Facebook or read the SIM card at the moment, so adding in Gmail will be very helpful to anyone coming from Android. Additionally, numbers in the call log can now be saved and modified, plus the dialer will suggest numbers as you start to type.
Email: The stock email client will now support image attachments, and will be able to download audio and video attachments in new messages. A draft mode will be added too. Sadly, there’s no mention of expanding it beyond the standard integration with a few web-based email systems.
MMS: Pictures, audio and video can now be sent using MMS messages.
The new features don’t stop there, as Firefox OS 1.1 will also get an adaptive search bar added to the home screen, browser downloads, a music search function, calendar reminders and event creation, 15 new languages, and performance and scrolling improvements.
According to Mozilla, the update will be available for owners of developer phones and the ZTE Open and Alcatel One Touch Fire soon, although no exact date is given. We’d also expect it to come pre-installed on ZTE’s next Firefox phone, which it has said will be coming early next year.