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One Week With the Geeksphone Peak

I ordered the Geeksphone Peak on the 5th May when there where devices available again and received it just two days later.

Unfortunately i couldn’t use all features of it back then because i had no SIM card adapter and only a nano SIM card available.

In the mean time i ordered one and i could use the phone in its whole functionality. To really find out how it behaves in everyday use, i decided to use it as my primary phone for a whole week instead of the iPhone.

This is my report after one week.

Calling, sms etc.

Having the device in your hand and doing a phone call for the first time feels very special when you realize that all of it is based on web technologies.

Importing the contacts was very easy as i had all of them synced in my Google account and the phone comes with an importer preinstalled.

The look of the dialer app doesn’t differ a lot from the ones you may already know from iOS or Android and works already very well and stable.

The SMS app also works as it should and the texts are organized in conversations with people.

Browser

The phone comes with the firefox (surpise!) mobile browser which basically looks like the one on Android. There are only few settings yet and at first it used Bing as search engine. Fortunately it now uses Google but you still can’t choose this on your own.

As far as i have seen, Firefox Sync also isn’t available yet.

Marketplace

The marketplace is actually very cool although it has not that many apps yet and you find a lot of mobile optimized websites that don’t offer any “native” functionality. Few people actually know that apps created for Firefox OS also run on Firefox for Android and desktop operating systems. That’s right: they run on nearly all platforms. Developers have to keep that in mind when developing for Firefox OS and make their app as responsible as possible.

Performance

If you use the Peak you will realize that it is not yet production ready. The operating system still has many performance issues and apps crash from time to time. But with the updates provided by Geeksphone it always gets better and i’m sure until the first devices are being released this summer the system will be stable and fast.

Updates

Geeksphone offers on-the-air updates for the operating system. If you want to use the unstable builds they offer current images here:

downloads.geeksphone.com

There is a small guide available on how to flash these images onto your phone.

Conclusion

Despite the Peak being my primary phone for this week i still couldn’t let my iPhone at home all the time. There are several apps (like Whatsapp which i use a lot) that are not yet available for Firefox OS. (I’m developing an instant messaging app at the moment but it is not yet finished)

But if you hold such a device in your hands, you will realize that it is a huge opportunity for an open operating system that is based on established technologies and for cheaper phones.

It especially is a huge chance for 3rd world countries where smart phones still are a luxury unavailable to most of the people living there.

I’m really looking forward to it being officially released and seeing all the devices which will be available with Firefox OS.

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