ZTE Open Firefox OS handset to hit eBay for $80

The smartphone will come boldly clad in orange, and it will be unlocked for use on a mobile network of the owner's choice.

ZTE Open

Firefox OS will be making a more "global" debut quite soon.

Mozilla and ZTE announced today that the ZTE Open running Firefox OS will be available "soon" on eBay. The companies didn't specify exactly when the handset will hit the e-commerce site, but did say that it'll come in the color orange and will be unlocked, allowing it to run on the carrier network of the customer's choice.

The ZTE Open will cost eBay customers in the U.S. and U.K. $80. The handset's Firefox OS installation relies on the Web to power the mobile experience. The platform allows for the standard smartphone apps, including messaging and e-mail, and includes access to applications through the Firefox Marketplace.

Earlier this month, Telefonica began selling the ZTE Open in Colombia and Venezuela, following its debut in Spain in July.

Spanish startup Geeksphone, meanwhile, is selling the $197 Peak+ smartphone similarly equipped with Mozilla's browser-based Firefox OS.

As Mozilla points out, Firefox OS and the ZTE Open are designed for "first-time smartphone buyers." Now the companies need to convince customers in the U.S. and U.K. that buying into the handset and operating system is a good idea.

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