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Hands on with Firefox 4 for Android (RC)

22 Mar

Firefox for Android, the awesome screen

Access bookmarks and browsing record with the "awesome screen" in successi~ Firefox for Android.

(Credit: Mozilla)

Firefox notwithstanding Mobile (download) is just one step absent from its first Android release, in the same manner with Mozilla announced the browser’s relinquish candidate today. 

Pending final testing, the sensitive version of the popular Firefox browser give by ~ soon be available in full cogency on Android smartphones (the release solicitant will be available beginning today in the Android Market). Firefox 4 desire also work on the Maemo platform (download).

I sat into disrepute with Mozilla to take a observe at the upcoming changes and enhancements. I’ve perpetually liked Mozilla’s mobile design, which hides the nuts and bolts like setting and tabs in the “gutters” without interrupti~ either side of the browsing screen and can be reached by swiping perpendicular or left. The layout does dilate the screen’s real estate, ~-end it also makes some features harder to audience.

A new default start screen puts some of those features back into point of concentration with quick links to previously viewed Web pages, suggested Firefox add-ons, and most-recent tabs you’ve opened in c~tinuance other computers, the latter courtesy of Firefox Sync.

The awesome ~ricade–the combined address and search fields–has besides received a little more awesomeness; it now pulls down as a screen to impart your bookmarks, browsing history, and desktop tabs from Sync. Typing a hardly any letters pulls up suggestions.

In terms of usability, however, I was greatest in quantity impressed with improvements made to the browser’s succeed. Mozilla takes a risk releasing nocturnal and in-production builds, and Firefox in the exceeding has not had the performance capabilities that the browser of necessity to be competitive. It can possess all the cool and useful say further-ons it wants, but if it’s not dissipated, nobody will use it. Mozilla knows it, and the browsing speeds for the time of our demo were heartening. We’ll desire more detailed benchmarks when the abounding release hits.

In addition to smoother, faster browsing, I played through pinch and zoom and a new, yet very familiar fit-to-zoom gesticulation wherein double-tapping the screen zooms the make easy in to a full-width line. It’s an easy way to point of convergence in on one article on a Web place’s splash page, for example.

Copy/paste is an option for text fields, but not however for content within a Web locality. Hopefully that’s a technical conundrum that Mozilla pleasure be able to tackle in future versions.

Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo power of determination work on tablets as well for the re~on that smartphones. On the technical side, it runs away the same engine (Gecko 2.0) driving the desktop version of Firefox 4, which is too due this week, and it supports HTML5.

Again, this is the clearance candidate and not the full translation, though we expect the full reading to follow very soon.

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Posted by on 2011/03/22 in Popular

 

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