Firefox OS, also known among developers as Boot2Gecko, was an ambitious project initiated by Mozilla. The team had tasted success with Firefox as an open-source browser, competing against other closed source alternatives such as the popular Google Chrome and Internet Explorer. So when Firefox OS was announced in 2013, many open source enthusiasts hoped to see similar success against competitors like Android and iOS.
Unfortunately, things have not gone as planned. Though Firefox still retains a sizable fanbase on the desktop and mobile browser front, the situation is a lot worse for Firefox OS, as the project is now officially dead.
The situation should come as no surprise to people following the project. Mozilla’s Firefox OS never really picked up as a mobile OS competitor as it was unable to attract users with its web application implementation and open web API usage. Mozilla had announced its intentions to discontinue development back in late 2015, and finally ceased all development of the mobile OS in 2016.
The final nail in the coffin comes from Mozilla laying off the team tasked with bringing Firefox OS to connected devices, which was the attempt to bring the OS to IoT devices. The lay-off affects about 50 employees, per the report from CNET. Some of the affected employees will be relocated to new positions within Mozilla while others will be laid off.
Mozilla’s agenda behind its software endeavors was not to make money, but instead push for an improvement in the overall experience on the web. Firefox OS was one such project, but Mozilla was unfortunately unable to meet their objective.