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Try out FireFox OS with this simple launcher APK
Have you been wondering what the deal is with Firefox OS, but can’t get around to trying out some hardware or flashing a custom ROM? Well good news, you can now try out the a little bit of what Firefox OS has to offer with minimum hassle, thanks to this ‘Developer Preview’ app.
The Firefox OS 2.5 Developer Preview is essentially a launcher than you can install with a simple APK. The file is available to download directly from Mozilla, as there isn’t a Google Play option. The APK weighs in at 88MB, so it’s a modest download but there’s plenty to it. The launcher also comes with several system level applications; such as calls, messaging, email and even an app store; to give you a more complete feel for what Firefox OS 2.5 is like. Don’t worry about having to make a major commitment though, all of your other apps will continue to work as before.
Personally, I find the home screen UI to be a bit oversized on my 5.5-inch handset, but in terms of features there are some interesting ideas. You can pin websites directly to the home screen and the ability to quickly hop to the address bar from anywhere is handy. There are a few little slowdowns in the UI, particularly with the animations, and the back button doesn’t seem to do anything, but it’s quite stable for software labelled as a developer preview. That said, there’s still a bit of work left to do before this preview app is likely to win many people over to Firefox OS.
If you have taken the launcher for a spin, let us know what you thought in the comments below, or drop us a line through our forum. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can always flash the full OS to your device by heading to this link.