O2’s Dunne: Firefox OS to overtake BlackBerry in a year


Platform may become the third most popular and overtake BlackBerry, says operators UK boss

O2 UK CEO Ronan Dunne has said Mozilla’s new operating system, Firefox OS, could be the third most popular in the world by this time next year – overtaking BlackBerry in the process.

Telefónica is one of 17 operators that have so far committed to offering devices which run on the new system.

Android and Apple iOS occupy first and second spot, with global OS market share of around 68 per cent and 19 per cent respectively. BlackBerry currently has 4.7 per cent of the market.

A number of manufacturers, including Sony, ZTE, Alcatel-Lucent, LG and Huawei, have committed to running Firefox OS on low-end devices this year.

The operating system will launch in a number of Telefónica’s global markets this year and will arrive in the UK by 2014, the company said.

Dunne said handsets running the OS will be priced to allow customers using a standard feature phone to upgrade to a smartphone for the first time.

He said: “We want to get a price point that allows us to get more phones into the hands of our customers.

“Next year, there will be huge interest in how far Firefox OS has moved, taking position as the third biggest operating system – it has the potential to do that.

“It won’t be that another operating system is losing out – feature phones will lose out.

“I think what you’ll find is it will be increasing the overall pie [of smartphone owners] because a lot of the early adoption will be people who would otherwise not have had access to smartphones.”