Smartphones based on Firefox OS are slated to debut later this year in several emerging markets around the world. But if you’re itching to try it out early, Mozilla has been pushing out a simulator compatible with all major PC platforms, and today a preview of version 3.0 has arrived with a handful of new features.
The most notable is a new Push to Device option that allows developers to transfer existing work-in-progress applications to a connected Firefox OS device via USB -- assuming they're one of the few that actually has a dev unit lying around. The company notes that remote debugging must be enabled on the device and the feature only works on Linux at the moment, with Windows support set to be added in the final version.
Other additions to Firefox OS Simulator 3.0 include rotation simulation so developers can test how their apps would adapt to portrait and landscape mode from the desktop, basic geolocation API simulation for apps to read out longitude and latitude values, and an updated version of the Gaia user interface.
Although anyone can download the latest x86 Firefox OS runtime, the idea is for the project’s contributors to test the Gaia shell and applications that are built for the platform, as well as giving early access to third party developers who might want to start building applications ahead of its launch.
Mozilla acknowledged that the third version of the simulator is still "a bit rough around the edges," hence the preview designation, but they decided to release anyway so users can provide feedback and contribute fixes.
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