Today Sony continued the Firefox OS evaluation started last year by submitting a widget-like functionality (we call it “gadgets”), which allows easy interaction with applications from the home screen. It is now uploaded to Bugzilla, where the Firefox OS community will evaluate and discuss if and how to integrate this functionality into Firefox OS. Note that it’s still work in progress and you can influence how it will look like in the end.
Gadget framework makes it possible to add a view of an app similar to Android widgets or desktop gadgets to the home and lock screens. As you can see in the video above, a gadget is easily added to the home screen through a menu that is accessed by a long press on the home screen. It can also be added to the lock screen, where it provides a shortcut to the parent app. You can interact with the app through the gadget, move the gadget around on the screen or resize it. The gadget functionality is an addition to Gaia, which is Firefox OS’ user interface level.
At the moment, we are participating in discussions around if and how this functionality could be integrated into the Firefox OS master branch, and we hope that the community continues to fine tune and work with the gadget feature. You can follow and take part in the discussion through the mozilla.dev.gaia mailing list or through the bug in Bugzilla (bug IDs 980929, 980935 and 980936). The next step for us is to conclude how we can align the gadget functionality with Mozilla’s roadmap for Gaia, and how we can make it fit into the Firefox OS framework.
At Sony, we continuously evaluate new operating systems and platforms, and from a technical perspective we try to be as open as we can. Firefox OS is one of the platforms we’re currently looking into, and we are continuously looking at how we could help improve Firefox OS, as part of our evaluation.
Even though we are still only doing a technical assessment of Firefox OS, we already now want to give something back to the community around Firefox OS, by proposing the gadget feature which we developed during our evaluation work. However, please note that from our side this is still only an early review of a technical platform and we make no commitment to continued work on Firefox OS from Sony. If you have any questions or comments, drop us a line below!