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KaiOS logo.svg
DeveloperKaiOS Technologies (Hong Kong) Limited (with TCL as largest shareholder)[1]
Written inHTML, CSS, JavaScript
OS familyFirefox OS / Open Web (based on Linux kernel)
Working stateActive
Initial release2017
Marketing targetMobile phones
Package managerKaiStore
Kernel typeMonolithic (Linux)
Default user interfaceGraphical
LicenseLinux kernel patches under GPLv2, B2G under MPL[2][3]
Official websitewww.kaiostech.com

KaiOS is a mobile operating system based on Linux, developed by KaiOS Technologies (Hong Kong) Limited, a company based in Kowloon, Hong Kong, for keypad devices with largest shareholder being Chinese multinational electronics conglomerate TCL Corporation.[1] It is forked from B2G OS (Boot to Gecko OS), an open source community-driven fork of Firefox OS, which was discontinued by Mozilla in 2016.[4][5][6]

The primary features of KaiOS bring support for 4G LTE E, VoLTE, GPS and Wi-Fi with HTML5-based apps and longer battery life to non-touch devices with optimized user interface, less memory and energy consumption.[7][8] It also features over-the-air updates (OTA updates). A dedicated app marketplace (KaiStore) enables users to download applications.[9] Some services are preloaded as HTML5 applications, including Facebook and YouTube.[10] As of April 1st, 2020 there are 500+ apps in KaiStore. The operating system is comparatively lightweight on hardware resource usage, and is able to run on devices with just 256 MB of memory.[11]

The operating system first appeared in 2017 and is developed by KaiOS Technologies Inc., a Kowloon, Hong Kong-based[12] company headed by CEO Sebastien Codeville with offices in other countries. In June 2018, Google invested US$22 million in the operating system.[13] India-based telecom operator Reliance Jio also invested $7 million in cash for a 16% stake in the company.[14]

In market share study results announced in May 2018, KaiOS beat Apple's iOS for second place in India,[15] while Android dominates with 71%, albeit down by 9%. KaiOS growth is being largely attributed to the popularity of the competitively-priced Jio Phone.[16] In Q1 2018, 23 million KaiOS devices were shipped.[17]

In March 2020 Mozilla and KaiOS Technologies announced a partnership to update KaiOS with a modern version of the Gecko browser engine and more closely aligned testing infrastructure. This change should give KaiOS 4 years worth of performance and security improvements and new features, including TLS 1.3, WebAssembly, WebGL 2.0, Progressive Web Apps, new video codecs like WebP, AV1 and modern JavaScript and CSS features.[18][19]

KaiOS is also the name of an unrelated Linux project, dating from 2014 and targeted at embedded systems.[20]


Jio Phone

Devices that come with KaiOS are:[21]

Open source[edit]

With the release of the Nokia 8110 4G, an active community around both KaiOS and the phone arose and released the first version of a jailbreak. This gave users the ability to use old Firefox OS apps on KaiOS devices, as well as flashing their devices with community-created ROMs, such as GerdaOS.[39][40]


As of February 2018, KaiOS Technologies has partnered with Mozilla, Airfind, Facebook, Google, Bullitt, Doro, HMD Global, Micromax, NXP, Spreadtrum, Qualcomm, Jio, Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Orange S.A.[41][10][42]

In March 2020 KaiOS Technologies partnered with Mozilla to bring the modern version of Gecko browser engine to future KaiOS builds.[18][19]

Release history[edit]

Version Announced New Features
1.0 March 2017 First KaiOS smart feature flip phone
2.0 July 2017 Major Core upgrade to Gecko 48
2.5.0 November 2017[43] Services & 3rd party Apps
2.5.1 July 2018[44] KaiStore, KaiAccount, & advance features, WhatsApp
2.5.2 December 2018 KaiAds and SIMbased cust.
2.5.3 July 2019 Major service upgrades, Location Service Enhancement February 2020 Minor system updates, Notification Enhancement
2.5.4 August 2020


  1. ^ a b "The BRICs Broke The Monopoly, And India's "Hongmeng" Took Off".
  2. ^ "Can I access the source code? : KaiOS". Support.kaiostech.com.
  3. ^ "kaiostech/gecko-b2g". July 29, 2020 – via GitHub.
  4. ^ "KaiOS FAQ". KaiOS. Archived from the original on 2018-02-26. KaiOS originates from the Firefox OS open-source project, and has continued independently from Mozilla since 2016.
  5. ^ "JioPhone Operating System (Android or KaiOS or Firefox OS)". Jio4gmobile.in. Archived from the original on 2017-11-14. Retrieved 2019-12-10. JioPhone is going to run on KaiOS … a forked version of Firefox mobile OS.
  6. ^ Lunden, Ingrid (2018-02-26). "KaiOS, a feature phone platform built on the ashes of Firefox OS, adds Facebook, Youtube, Twitter and Google apps". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2019-12-10. KaiOS has been around since 2017. KaiOS built on a fork of Firefox OS. HMD/Nokia will be using it.
  7. ^ "KaiOS, Here's everything you should know about the operating system available in JioPhone — Mobile Studio". Mobilestudio.co.in. August 24, 2017. Archived from the original on January 6, 2018. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
  8. ^ Barton, James. "KaiOS Emerging OS - Developing Telecoms". Developingtelecoms.com.
  9. ^ "Reliance Jio LYF 4G VoLTE feature phone: To run KaiOS, will have an app store too". Indianexpress.com. 20 July 2017.
  10. ^ a b "All you need to know about KaiOS that runs on Jio feature phone". Blogpoke.com.
  11. ^ "KaiOS is on 30 million phones and now has Google apps, Facebook, Twitter". Mobilityarena.com. 27 February 2018.
  12. ^ "Official LinkedIn page of KaiOS Technologies, Inc". LinkedIn. Retrieved 14 June 2020. The team behind KaiOS currently numbers more than 280 people and continues to grow rapidly. Headquartered in Hong Kong, Kai has offices around the world, including the U.S., China, India, and France."; "KaiOS is a Hong Kong based company.
  13. ^ "Google invests $22 million in the OS powering Nokia feature phones". Theverge.com.
  14. ^ Parikh, Prasham (2019-04-24). "KaiOS and Jio are ready to serve 4G goodness to the unserved". EOTO Tech. Retrieved 2019-05-01.
  15. ^ "KaiOS is doing well in India, but it's pulling some big numbers in US too". www.androidauthority.com. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
  16. ^ "JioPhone's KaiOS surpasses iOS to become India's second most popular mobile operating system". Bgr.in. 7 May 2018. Retrieved 18 August 2018.
  17. ^ "The second-largest mobile OS in India rhymes with iOS, but isn't iOS - Android Authority". www.androidauthority.com. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
  18. ^ a b Shankland, Stephen. "Mozilla helps modernize feature phones powered by Firefox tech". CNET. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  19. ^ a b "Firefox OS Successor: Mozilla and KaiOS announce partnership - gHacks Tech News". www.ghacks.net. Retrieved 2020-04-23.
  20. ^ "KaiOS Linux – A Small Linux Distribution You Can Trust".
  21. ^ "Explore KaiOS • Devices". KaiOS.
  22. ^ "Alcatel GO FLIP™". alcatelonetouch.ca. June 16, 2017.
  23. ^ "The Cingular Flip 2 is AT&T's newest clamshell phone". phonearena.com.
  24. ^ "Alcatel MyFlip (A405DL)". tracfone.com.
  25. ^ "Reliance Jio LYF 4G VoLTE feature phone: To run KaiOS, will have an app store too". indianexpress.com. July 20, 2017.
  26. ^ "[Exclusive] Reliance Jio and Lyf's 4G VoLTE Feature Phone". techpp.com. July 13, 2017.
  27. ^ "Jio Phone Booking - Pre Book Jio Mobile Online for 500 Only - Jio". jio.com.
  28. ^ "JioPhone 2 at Rs 2,999: Whatsapp, Youtube, Facebook, all on new feature phone". The Economic Times. 6 July 2018.
  29. ^ "The Return of The Nokia 8110 - 'the Banana Phone' - KaiOS". kaiostech.com. 7 June 2018.
  30. ^ "The Nokia 8110 is back". mybroadband.co.za.
  31. ^ Leung, Eletta (September 5, 2019). "Introducing the Nokia 2720 Flip and 800 Tough, powered by KaiOS". KaiOS.
  32. ^ "Doro's 7050 Is the Next Great Simple Phone". uk.pcmag.com. 26 February 2018.
  33. ^ "CAT B35 rugged feature phone launched with KaiOS, Google apps and 4G - Gizmochina". Gizmochina. 2018-09-22. Retrieved 2018-09-22.
  34. ^ "Maxcom at MWCA 2018". 2018-09-25.
  35. ^ "Google WizPhone WP006 is a JioPhone competitor, but its launched in Indonesia". 2018-12-07.
  36. ^ "MTN launches R300 smartphone with WhatsApp". mybroadband.co.za. 2019-03-07. Retrieved 2019-03-07.
  37. ^ a b Leung, Eletta (June 13, 2019). "KaiOS Technologies enters Brazil market through launch of Positivo P70S and Multilaser ZAPP". KaiOS.
  38. ^ Leung, Eletta (August 15, 2019). "The first TECNO device running KaiOS is here: Meet the T901". KaiOS.
  39. ^ "I spent a week with a $17 KaiOS phone - here's what I learned". Android Authority. 30 April 2019. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  40. ^ "GerdaOS: a custom ROM to liberate the heart of Kai". gerda.tech. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  41. ^ "MWC 2018: Kai Announces Partnerships with Mobile Industry Giants - KaiOS". Kaiostech.com. 26 February 2018.
  42. ^ "Mozilla helps modernize feature phones powered by Firefox tech". cnet.com. 11 March 2020.
  43. ^ "KaiOS 2.5 will run on feature phones with Qualcomm, Spreadtrum chipsets with just 256MB RAM". Fonearena.com.
  44. ^ Nayan (2019-12-29). "New Nokia 8110 4G firmware update brings KaiOS 2.5.1/2.5.2". Nokiapoweruser. Retrieved 2020-01-06. Nokia 8110 4G, running KaiOS, received […] firmware version, with KaiOS 2.5.1.

External links[edit]