dinsdag 25 juni 2013

Unboxing my Keon to play mobile

As a Mozilla Rep and as a Localizer I was privileged to receive a FirefoxOS phone. In my case this is the Keon made by Geeksphone. This is a so called Developer preview of the phones which are going to change the way we connect to the Web. It's completely based on HTML5, CSS and JavaScript.
Although my language Frisian isn't supported yet on these phones, I continue to localize all the necessary strings, so hopefully in the near future, when these phones come to The Netherlands, it will be picked up by the providers.

So, let's see what's in the box I received from Mozilla. My daughters first question was, "can I play with the mobile?" I said, "sure". Kids are a good way to test functionality and userfriendlyness. So with her and her friends we unboxed the Keon.

First look at the box already shows a different type of packing, instead of the normal flat boxes the Keon is boxed in a cube with lots of icons on the covers. And this cube opens up another triangular box which shows the phone as it is laying in a showcase.

First touch of the phone feels a bit heavy in spite of it's size. I really love the orange colour though, somehow looks like it's made for the Dutch market already. Only 3 physical buttons, 1 power and 2 for volume. Furthermore the normal necessary things, microphone, speaker, headphone- and powerconnection.

So let's get started, where's the rest? Well, that's well hidden away in the triangular box behind the phone.

All the things to get started and make the phone usefull, like battery, powercable, headphone, manual and some swag. The cover removes easily for placing the battery and I decided to place my SIM-card and SD-card too. All pretty well accessible.

So let's bring some live into this phone, power it up and hé, it starts immediately when pushing the power button. Apparently the battery was pre-loaded. Seeing the Geeksphone-logo come by and the Firefox-logo makes me feel proud being part of Mozilla for accomplishing this, great work!
After following the First Time Usage manual I am ready to start. SIM-card is well detected and asks for my pin.

Unlocking is different, but the suggestion of the popping menu below helps right away. Being used to a Galaxy S2, I miss the menu and back-button, they don't exist. There is only a Home-button outside the screen in the middle below, menu- and back-buttons are presented on the screen itself depending on the application you started. First impression is that responsiveness of the touchscreen is a little lame, but again I am used to a S2 which costs around €500, the Keon is for sale for €89. After a little swiping around I am quite impressed with the speed though.
Only 4 buttons on the home-screen, 1 screen to the left and 2 to the right. All buttons are made in a circle.

Jumping right to the Settings to hook this thing up to the Internet. After logging in, I can start browsing with Firefox from the Home-screen, fluently. On the left screen you can find links to online apps to be found with everything.me. Offline Apps are available in Firefox Marketplace. Is that even possible based on Javascript? So let's test a game: Sketchbook Squad by http://www.orangepixel.net/, a simple but addictive game and it works like a charm, wow.

All in all, if this is only a Developer preview, this already looks very promising and am looking forward for the final release later this year.

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