Firefox 9 Promises Speed, Adds Support for Lion and Android
By Katherine Noyes, PCWorld
Mozilla’s Firefox 9 browser will make its official debut on Tuesday, promising a raft of new features and speeds as much as 30 percent faster than those offered by its predecessor.
Other highlights include Mac OS X Lion support and an Android version that’s optimized for tablets.
Up to 30 Percent Faster
The new Firefox is also faster because it supports chunking XHR requests, allowing websites to display content as it’s downloaded rather than waiting for the entire download to complete. This will be especially noticeable for sites that download large sets of data or use AJAX, Mozilla notes.
On Macs, meanwhile, Firefox for Mac OS X Lion supports two-finger swipe gestures for an easy way to navigate between websites.
Firefox for Mac also has an enhanced look and feel that makes it easier to browse the Web using multiple monitors, Mozilla says.
Then there’s the Android version of Firefox 9, which is designed to leverage tablets’ larger screen sizes as well as other popular tablet features.
The Awesome Screen, for example, integrates Firefox Sync and “makes it easy to access your browsing history, open tabs, bookmarks, and saved passwords across desktop and mobile devices so you can type less and browse more,” Mozilla says.
Fresh HTML5 Support
Finally, one more benefit for developers is that Firefox for Android supports the HTML5 Form Validation API, automatically validating website form fields like numbers, emails, and URLs without requiring that developers write custom code or use a third-party library. The new Firefox release will be offered automatically to existing users of Mozilla’s browser.