Mozilla’s new operating system was touted by its makers as an open-source alternative to Android and iOS.
But the fact is it’s got a mountain to climb to even trouble the likes of Windows Phone and BlackBerry 10, let alone Google and Apple’s market-cornering giants.
Here’s five reasons why Firefox OS will struggle to make headway.
1 It’s nowhere near ready
Speak to anyone who used Firefox OS last week and they’ll tell you it’s not even close to the finished product.
This is not ideal when iOS 7 is likely to be revealed in the next three months and Google will doubtless detail Android Key Lime Pie in May.
Firefox OS is currently only up for grabs on the Geeksphone Keon developer handset, while Sony’s promises of developing a blower using the system won’t bear fruit until 2014.
By the time Firefox OS is ready to hit shelves, it’ll already be outdone by the big boys.
2 Mozilla just doesn’t have the brand awareness
Firefox is a decent web browser that has been outstripped by the excellence of Google Chrome in recent years.
People may have baulked at Android when it first reared its head, but it had the backing of one of tech’s biggest companies and all the money and power that entails.
Mozilla, with the best will in the world, is not Google or Apple. Firefox OS will find it hard to get beyond niche appeal.
3 Android is still on an upward curve
Google’s success with Android shows no sign of slowing down. Quite the opposite.
Top-end Android handsets are consistently the best phones in their class and the fact that they work so breezily with Google’s myriad web services make them a no-brainer for millions of people.
Mozilla just cannot begin to make a dent into such a huge and growing market share.
4 Rivals are already better
We’re not talking iOS and Android here, or even Windows Phone. No, we’re talking the impressive Ubuntu OS, also outed at MWC.
It’s been critically lauded, is good to go and has far more appeal to the hardcore tech fanatics that Firefox OS is also trying to attract.
Firefox OS’s big launch might have cornered headlines, but rivals like Ubuntu are already primed and ready for action.
5 There’s no chance it’ll kill the app ecosystem
Firefox OS’s web apps approach has been lauded by open access advocates.
That’s fair enough, but the idea that it can convince developers to ditch the lucrative iOS App Store or Google Play for this approach is hopeful at best.
Apple and Google have sold billions of apps and there’s no way that’s changing any time soon.
Mozilla’s idea is to be praised, but it’s highly unlikely we’ll see the major cultural shift it’s hoping for in the coming years.