The brand new Firefox for Android rolled out to everyone last month, but it still lacks the broad extension support that made the original browser so popular. To quote Douglas Adams, "this had made many people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move." Thankfully, experimental support for sideloading any Firefox extension has now arrived in the Nightly branch.
Last month brought some distressing news for Mozilla fans, as the company announced a restructuring that will see massive cuts that threaten current products like Firefox. Now we're seeing some of the first results coming from Mozilla's new focus on making more money: Firefox Send and Notes are being killed off.
Chrome might be most people's choice for browsing the web, but that doesn't mean it's the only option out there. Kiwi Browser is based on the same underlying code that powers Chrome, but it has its own unique features, including being one of the few mobile browsers to support desktop extensions on Android. The project hasn't seen many public-facing changes in the last year, but now a new release is coming down the pike.
Mozilla only recently started rolling out the fully redesigned Firefox bearing version number 79 to Android users, but it's already releasing its successor: Firefox 80. It's improving some smaller aspects that were initially missing or wonky, but extension support remains as limited as it's been.
Mozilla has been working on a rewritten version of Firefox for Android, designed to be faster and easier to maintain, and it started rolling out to the stable channel last week. Even though the new version is absolutely an upgrade in some areas, replacing the older browser before the newer codebase had all the same features has proven to be an unpopular move.
Mozilla has been around for over 20 years, but the current economic conditions in the US are affecting everyone in new ways. In a blog post, CEO Mitchell Baker has outlined some consequences of the pandemic, including a major loss of revenue that has lead to restructuring that will see the company become smaller and more focused on keeping itself out of the foxhole.
Mozilla has been working on a VPN for a long time, first experimenting with such a service in 2018. But lately, there's been more movement. The company has been beta-testing its latest take on virtual networks since last year, with an Android app available since early 2020. Today, Mozilla has announced that it's officially launching the paid service in a few countries.
If you thought the Google Chrome lineup was complicated with its stable, beta, dev, and Canary channels, you haven't looked into Firefox for Android. For a while, we had stable Firefox, Firefox Beta, Firefox Nightly, Firefox Preview, and Firefox Preview Nightly (not to mention the separate Firefox Focus) — truly a mess if you're just looking for the latest version of the completely rewritten new Firefox. That's finally changing, as Mozilla is starting to simplify its lineup, leaving only three versions: Firefox, Firefox Beta, and Firefox Nightly.
Firefox Preview has only received a significant update with version 5.2 with improved tab management and voice search a few days ago, but Mozilla is already working on the next feature-filled update. The unstable Nightly now supports three new add-ons and sees smaller refinements to the three-button overflow menu. The dead-space custom tab bug that's plaguing the current Firefox Preview build is also nowhere to be seen.
Mozilla's all-new Firefox version based on completely rewritten code continues receiving enhancements before it's ready to replace the company's old Android browser later this year. After the relatively minor 5.1 release late last month, version 5.2 brings a few more substantial enhancements to the plate, making the browser more comfortable to use.