Firm behind the Firefox web browser confirms that a number of partners have pledged their support to its upcoming smartphone devices

Mozilla announces Firefox smartphone, 18 partners sign up

Mozilla has revealed it is to offer a smartphone based on its mobile operating system, whilst revealing that 18 partners had already signed up.

The firm made the announcement ahead of this year’s Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona, highlighting that partners such as Deutsche Telekom and Telefonica had confirmed their support.

Additional firms such as LG, ZTE, TCL and Huawei have reportedly pledged their support, whilst more companies are set to follow.

Firefox OS is described as an "open alternative" and the devices are set to go head-to-head in the market with the likes of Apple and Google’s Android platform.

Analysts have been quick to predict a difficult road ahead for Mozilla, as it attempts to enter the smartphone market and compete with its much bigger and well-established players.

Nick Dillon, analyst at research firm Ovum, told the BBC: "A Firefox phone may be slightly cheaper than an Android one but the latter has access to Google services and 700,000 apps," said Nick Dillon, an analyst with research firm Ovum."

Jay Sullivan, vice president of products at Mozilla has said that the devices will likely be sold into the developing world and Eastern Europe. He also highlighted that the devices would likely make their way into the cheaper end of the smartphone market.

With the top spots in the smartphone market already locked up by Apple and Samsung, this year’s MWC has set the stage for an increased number of firms looking to fight it out for third place in the market.

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