21
Dec
unnamed

The team behind Firefox for Android teased the upcoming release with a tablet-friendly design back in late August, and the final version of FF9 just landed in the Android Market. The update not only features a specialized tablet interface, but also boosts performance and startup speed and brings some HTML5 tweaks to the scene, like camera input support and form validation.

SC20111221-090516 SC20111221-090503

The tablet interface offers some nice features over its phone-centric counterpart, like full-screen browsing in portrait, optimized tabs for easy thumb-switching between open pages, and a quick access buttons on the Action Bar. The overall feel and functionality of the finalized app is definitely a big improvement over the beta version that I tried when it was first announced, but the FF team has made one serious omission in this release: the option to change the user agent. That's right, even while browsing on the large screen of a tablet, you'll be stuck looking at mobile websites. Hopefully this is something that will be incorporated in a future update, but until then, I just can't use this as my daily driver.

FF9 is still definitely worth checking out, especially if you don't mind looking at mobile sites every once in a while. Hit the widget to give it a go.

Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • Roger Sellers

    That stinks.... My Droid 1 shows "Your device is not compatible with this item."

  • Bazar6

    I'll be sticking with Dolphin if they're omitting the option to change the User Agent.. what nonsense! Does it support Flash too? I remember when they first started that they didn't, and never heard anything new about the subject since.

    • Hotmann

      No user agent switching is definitely a deal breaker

    • Himmat

      How often do you actually use flash? You can always revert to the stock browser should the need arise. Al s o you can manually change from mobile to desktop site. I am currently using it and am loving it.

  • Himmat

    I for one certainly love this browser app by Firefox. It's much more user friendly methinks. Also a lot more smoother. Downsides are 1) may take you to mobile sites 2) no flash. However, even the stock browser took me to mobile sites at times and the flash was always buggy.

  • Valerio

    Actually there is an add-on to switch user agent. I think it is called 'Phony'

    • sgtguthrie

      And it seems pretty "phony" as it doesn't work! Or, at least since the update...

      I also can't type messages here, as it erases the first word as I type the second and so on.

      I use flash a lot on my tablet, so this is a no go for me too.

      Still seems quite beta to me!

      • sgtguthrie

        Okay, Phony started working now, but flash and typing issues are still deal breakers...

        • Justin

          I can swipe from right to left to close the tabs bar and left to right to open the tabs bar but swiping from the right side to the left does nothing for me. This is in landscape mode on a tablet.

  • Justin

    I can't figure out how to access bookmarks on the tablet. Anybody figure this out?

    • cosmic

      Swipe from right to left and it'll bring up some options, one being bookmarks.

  • Cosmic

    Install the add on "phony"for user agent selection in preferences. Its that simple. Still sticking with opera though.

  • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody

    I really like the way tabs are displayed in Landscape mode now, making it possible to move around the page without the tabs auto-hiding (seems everybody else auto-hides them). While I'm not about to uninstall the other 4 browsers I have installed, I think firefox is about to standardize as my regular browser of choice on the tablet.

  • http://www.teamrou.com Phil Oakley

    Once I have the option to change the user agent, this will be my permanent browser (unless Chrome for Android comes before that).

  • http://www.brightfusehosting.com Adam

    Piece of crap. Can't browse without history. Dolphin HD and Dolphin for Pad beat the heck out of this app.

  • http://www.brightfusehosting.com Adam

    Forgot to mention...no user agent changing? Screw this.

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