ZTE shows off Firefox OS and Open phone at MWC 2013


In perhaps the most anti-climatic announcement of the day, ZTE took time during its Mobile World Congress 2013 presentation to unveil the ZTE Open phone and Firefox OS –both of which were introduced the previous day by Mozilla. ZTE did do it’s best to add it’s own take on the partnership, of course.

Firefox OS will be a large part of ZTE’s push to become one of the top three brands in mobile by 2015. The first phone from the Chinese manufacturer to run the new operating system is the ZTE Open, which will launch worldwide over the course of the year – beginning with Columbia, Spain, and Venezuela in the summer.

We usually take a good look at the spec sheet of a phone when its announced, but that’s not the point with Firefox OS – it’s designed to run well on low-end phones (and in comparison to most smartphones on the market, the ZTE Open would definitely be considered low-end). Running on a 1GHz processor and 256MB of RAM, it features a 3.5-inch multitouch, HVGA display. Internal storage clocks in at 512MB. The Open also features GPS and a 3.2-megapixel camera. Not anything particularly impressive until you consider the market the phone is meant for.

Ying Xue of Telefonica, one of ZTE’s partners, stated the goal of the Open is to convert feature phone users. Telefonica’s director of devices Carlos Fernandez Casares added the idea that smartphone penetration rates are rather low and there’s tons of room for growth, noting Latin America’s rate of smartphone penetration is just 18 percent. By comparison, the U.S. is well over 50 precent. The ZTE Open is essentially the exact opposite of the high-end Grand Memo that was also announced during the conference. That phone is meant for high-end consumers with previous smartphone experience. The Open is meant to make that initial transition from “dumbphone” to smartphone easier.


Exclusive: Take a look at what a next-generation 5G phone will look like

With 5G phones debuting at MWC in mere days, there is discussion about whether they will be clunky bricks that die after a few hours? A reference design from Qualcomm offerrs a glimpse of the future: This is what 5G phones will look like.

Apple loses battle to use Intel modems in Germany in latest clash with Qualcomm

Apple is following the Federal Trade Commission's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Product Review

Nokia’s 3.1 Plus is an affordable phone that’s crippled by its camera

The Nokia 3.1 Plus is HMD Global’s first smartphone to be sold by a U.S. carrier in-store. It’s only available on Cricket Wireless right now, which underlines its focus on affordability. Should you buy a phone this affordable?

The Google Pixel Watch could finally launch sometime this year

From its Pixel smartphones to Google Home, the Google brand is quickly becoming synonymous with high-quality consumer hardware. Eventually, according to rumors, Google may branch out a little further by creating its first smartwatch.

Happy Valentine’s Day! Coffee Meets Bagel dating app data may have been breached

Are you planning on using Coffee Meets Bagel to find love on Valentine's Day? If you've been using the app for a while, you'll probably want to change your password -- the company said a data breach may have taken place before May 2018.

Worried about extra data charges? Here's how to check your usage on an iPhone

It's common to get a little nervous about nearing data limits. Keep your peace of mind by checking how much data your iPhone is using. Our guide on how to check data usage on an iPhone helps you stay in control.

North Focals smartglasses discount cuts the price by a massive $400

Canadian startup North is hoping smartglasses will be the next big wearable. After announcing its new Focals smartglasses in late 2018, the company opened product showrooms in Brooklyn and Toronto and has made its first shipment.

New Apple patent hints clamshell-style foldable phone may be in the works

Apple has filed a patent for a foldable phone that suggests the company could be following in the footsteps of the likes of Samsung and Huawei. The patent describes a clamshell-style foldable phone with two separate sections.

Xiaomi Mi 9 will be one of the first phones with monster Snapdragon 855 chip

Xiaomi's next major smartphone release will be the Mi 9, and the company hasn't held back in giving us a good look at the phone, revealing the design, the camera, and a stunning color.

Galaxy Watch Active isn't official yet, but you can see it in Samsung's own app

Samsung may be about to resurrect its Sport line of smartwatches under a new name: The Galaxy Watch Sport Active. Leaks and rumors are building our picture of the device at the moment.

Stop buying old tablets, says Samsung, buy the new Galaxy Tab S5e instead

Samsung has launched the Galaxy Tab S5e -- the E is for Essential -- a reasonably priced tablet that includes many of the features we like from the Tab A 10.5, and the Tab S4. Here's what you need to know.

Bag yourself a bargain with the best budget tablets under $200

The battle for your budget tablet affections is really ramping up. Which tablet, costing less than $200, should be commanding your attention? We take a look at some different options for the budget-conscious.

Wi-Fi 6 is coming. Here's what it means for your wireless network connections

We're exploring the new naming convention for wireless standards, how it affects the devices you buy, and what the upcoming Wi-Fi generation is changing for the better.
Home Theater

Samsung accidentally leaks its new Galaxy Buds ahead of launch

It's been all but certain that Samsung would launch a successor to its Gear IconX wireless earbuds soon, but a newly leaked photo and recent FCC certification document seems to indicate that the debut is very close.