ZTE has announced plans to sell its Firefox OS smartphone direct to consumers in the US and UK rather than wait on local carriers to range and sell the devices. This particular model will also be sold in the exclusive Firefox Orange color while other carriers currently offer standard Black and Blue color choices in Latin America.
This makes ZTE the first manufacturer to sell a smartphone with the nascent operating system in the US. The ZTE Open offers all the functions expected from a current smartphone – calls, messaging, email, camera as well as built-in social integration with Facebook and Twitter, location-based services like Nokia HERE which includes local transit and traffic information along with default features like the Firefox Web browser and the Firefox Marketplace. The phone will be launched unlocked for $79.99 one month after commercial launch in October.
While Sprint sits on the working group responsible for Firefox OS, it has yet to confirm any solid plans for launching Firefox OS in the US, as the ZTE Open Firefox OS smartphone is an unlocked 3G model.