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Mozilla dev dangles Chromecast clone dongle

Firefox OS clone would bring video from phones and browsers to your telly

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Mozilla Developer Network principal developer evangelist Christian Heilmann has popped out a tweet mentioning an effort to clone Google's Chromecast dongle, but with Firefox OS under the hood.

Chromecast is a minimalist Android computer that offers WiFi and an HDMI plug. The WiFi sucks video out of devices running Google's Chrome browser, the HDMI plug shoots it into a television rather more elegantly than is the case with either cables or the perennially-flaky DLNA. The result is a handy way to send a device's screen to a larger display.

News of a Firefox OS-based competitor came when Heilmann fluttered out the tweet below.

Mozilla has since told other media this is a wildcat effort that is using Firefox OS but isn't an official capital P Project.

It's not hard to see why Mozilla could at least sanction the effort: the organisation’s commitment to an open web makes a device that sends video from either HTML5 pages or phones running Firefox OS to larger displays a nice-to-have.

What Mozilla lacks is commercial motivation. Chromecast makes sense as a way for Google to make its Play store more attractive to users because there's only so much telly one can watch on even a big fondleslab before pining for a way to send it to a larger screen. By making the Chromecast available at a very reasonable price - $US35, $AUD50 and £30 – Google gives itself the chance of scooping years worth of commissions from its content partners.

Mozilla's never shown much interest in building a content store, so doesn't have that motivation. Little wonder this appears not to be an official project. ®

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