Mozilla's Webmaker App Could Spur Firefox OS App Developers
Mozilla continues to push ahead with its Firefox OS mobile operating system, which is arriving on phones in many markets around the world. In fact, the company has aligned its whole strategy around the mobile platform. The OS is gaining enough traction that many observers see it as eventually being competitive with iOS and Android phones, but I've made the point that If Firefox OS is to be a resounding success, it's going to need a very healthy ecosystem of apps to attract users. Apps count for a lot in the mobile game.
Now, there are reports that Mozilla is working on an app for Android, iOS and Firefox OS that gives smartphone users the ability to easily create and share Web apps. It could let app builders develop tools that are useful for all three mobile platforms.
As The Next Web notes:
"The [Webmaker app] home feed offers a series of template options aimed at “personas” or particular professions, such as teachers, medics, journalists and small business owners. Users can customize any of them with Webmaker “blocks” which include text, forms, geolocations and more."
"Mozilla hopes to launch the Webmaker app simultaneously on Android and Firefox OS early next year."
There is also going to be a version that caters to iOS, but there isn't word on when that will arrive.
It is critical for Mozilla to offer tools to developers that can encourage them to deliver solid apps for Firefox OS.
Mozilla is focusing on the low hanging fruit in the mobile phone market. Its phones are currently only in emerging markets and many users of these phones have limited financial resources. They may not demand full-featured smartphones, but will want to have choice when it comes to apps.
Mozilla's webmaker app, of course, is an extension of its longstanding Webmaker initiative, which seeks to make users everywhere more web-literate and capable. Mozilla claims that its goal is to "move millions of people from using the web to actively making the web."
You can find more on Mozilla's Webmaker tools here, including the existing Appmaker application.