Mozilla and Panasonic have come together to bring the open source Firefox OS to TVs. After LG reworked WebOS to make it the default software for its smart TVs, the Japanese display giant is also looking to revamp its software for Internet-connected television sets. On Monday, Mozilla and Panasonic said they will jointly develop and promote a version of Firefox OS for smart TVs.
Firefox OS will be the heart and soul of new Panasonic smart TVs, so viewers can not just watch regular TV but also indulge in some video streaming from popular websites and will also have access to Firefox's dedicated apps for the same.
Mozilla's announcement and similar ones from LG, Roku and others at CES in Las Vegas will mean more smart TV choices for consumers, with different OSes running the show. This is in contrast to the smartphone market, where Apple's iOS and Google's Android OS dominate, with Windows Phone in third place.
Leaping to a smart TV soon
Firefox OS, which became official last year with two budget handsets, is still in the nascent stage of development, so it will be interesting to see what kind of a route Panasonic takes. One thing is for sure though, Mozilla is not just resting on its browser laurels and wants to customise Firefox for all manner of devices. This strategy is being used by Google too, which launched the Open Automotive Alliance to bring Android to cars.
Competing in the smart TV operating system market will be just as difficult for Mozilla, but it does have a big partner early on in the game. As smart TVs become ubiquitous, the battle turns to the software that delivers the connected experience, letting users use apps and services such as Hulu and Netflix from the comfort of their living room on a big screen.
With inputs from AP