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Firefox

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Firefox 50 now available for Android

Firefox is one of many third-party web browsers available on Android, and today the desktop and mobile browsers have been bumped to version 50.0. The changelog for the Android version is much smaller than for the desktop, but there are some notable improvements.

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Mozilla announces Project Quantum, an improved rendering engine for Firefox

I'm sure many of you, like myself, use Google Chrome as your main browser. Chrome was built from scratch, with the exception of its engine (which was WebKit at the time), to be for the modern web. The internet is no longer a series of text-only pages with images, and Chrome was built with modern web applications and security in mind.

If you don't know, a rendering engine is the part of a web browser that displays content. Chrome and Opera use Blink, Safari uses WebKit, and so on. Firefox's engine, called Gecko, has been around for ages. In fact, it was originally developed for Netscape Navigator all the way back in 1997 to replace their existing rendering engine.

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Firefox Aurora arrives on the Play Store in "unreleased" state

For a couple of years, Firefox Aurora, the developer edition of the popular browser, has only been available directly from Mozilla. As of today, Aurora has landed on the Play Store, in early access (i.e. unreleased) form. This is presumably because it's unstable and not meant to be used by the general public, and only by those interested in what's coming soon or building the web. Regardless, it is always good to see things in development that will later be deployed to the public version of Firefox, which is currently on v49.

I've been trying to find out when Mozilla first released Aurora for Android, but the best I've found is v29.0a2, made available on February 7 2014.

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InBrief
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Firefox Beta hits v50 with merged recent and history panels

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Firefox 49 brings tab improvements, offline page viewing, and more [APK Download]

Firefox may have been overshadowed by Chrome in terms of worldwide users, but it is still an excellent browser, even on Android. The latest update, version 49, has the usual dose of new features and bug fixes.

The biggest new feature is offline page viewing, which coincidentally enough, was recently added to the Chrome Dev builds. However, Chrome allows you to manually choose what pages you want stored for offline reading, whereas Firefox tries to store recent pages offline automatically. I imagine it wouldn't be too difficult to implement Chrome's offline functionality, now that the framework is in place.

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Firefox 47 Beta Adds A Few Changes To Slightly Reduce Mobile Data Usage, Removes Support For Android Web Runtime

Shortly after Firefox 46 went stable, the beta for version 47 is now available. As is typical for browser updates, the changes are minor and eclectic, but a few this time around can decrease the amount of mobile data you consume by a hair or two.

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Firefox 46 Goes Stable, Drops Support For Android Honeycomb

Another Firefox update is making its way out to devices. Unless they're running Honeycomb, that is. This version of Mozilla's open source browser does not work on tablets running Android 3.0 - 3.2.

Considering less than 0.1% of Android users were on Honeycomb two years ago, only four or five people will be saddened by this news.

Everyone else will see popular websites such as Facebook and YouTube show up in the Top Sites panel at first launch. Notifications about tabs opened in the background now list URLs. Firefox 46 will also request permissions as needed instead of when first installed, thanks to Android 6.0.

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Mozilla Releases Firefox for Android Beta v46 With The Ability To Display Cached Webpages While Offline And Other Refinements

Much like Chrome releases, Mozilla's updates for Firefox are rarely mindblowing. Instead, we get a constant stream of smaller changes that slowly but surely upgrade all aspects of the user experience. The latest beta release for Firefox, v46, falls right in line with this pattern. The highlight of the update is that the browser will display recently visited webpages even when you are offline, using data stored in cache.

You don't need to do anything in particular to get the offline webpage feature going; if Firefox has it cached, it will display instead of the typical error messages you get when trying to browse offline.

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Mozilla Releases Firefox v45 With Click-To-View Images, The Option To Disable Cameras And Microphones For Family Members, And More

If you're not using Chrome on Android, there's a good chance you're using Firefox. Mozilla has bumped up the mobile browser to version 45 with a few tweaks that can help you save data and privacy alike.

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Mozilla Rolls Out Firefox v44 With Cloud Printing, Improved Tabs Screen, And More

So you don't want to use Chrome? No problem, there are alternatives. Mozilla's Firefox browser has gotten pretty good lately, and it gets plenty of updates, like the update it's getting today to v44. There are a few user facing changes this time; if you haven't checked out Firefox recently, maybe now's a good time.

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