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Mozilla is testing the first Firefox OS tablet prototype

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Firefox OS tablet
Firefox OS tablet

The US might not see it immediately, but the world will soon get its first Firefox OS tablet. Mozilla has begun testing its browser-based operating system on tablets and has developed its own tablet prototype. Currently Firefox OS runs on smartphones and may eventually power smart television screens, but this is the first showing of it on a big-screen device.

The Foxconn-built prototype isn't the highest-end tablet by any means, but it's not the worst, either: specs just released say it will have a 10-inch, 1280 x 800 display, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of internal storage paired to a 1GHz quad-core processor. In an age of high-pixel density displays, it would be pretty difficult for this device to compete with Retina iPads, the Nexus 10, or the Nexus 7, but that's never been Mozilla's goal for the platform — instead, the display is a giveaway of the company's intention to go after emerging markets.

Mozilla wants Firefox OS on as many inexpensive devices as possible

That's the key here: emerging markets. We saw Mozilla stepping back at the end of 2013 when the company said its Firefox OS-equipped smartphones wouldn't be coming to the US in the near future. That's because the company wants to focus on winning areas of the world where the smartphone and tablet saturation isn't as high, areas that are traditionally more price-sensitive. That's not to say that Firefox OS devices will never make it to the US — but for now, Mozilla's betting that its best chances for success lie elsewhere.