On Tuesday, Mozilla released the latest version of Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo smartphones. Firefox 4 now includes support for Firefox Sync, which allows you to sync open tabs, history, bookmarks, passwords, and other data, between your computer and your smartphone. The new Firefox allows for tabbed browsing, add-on installation, and features a new, streamlined look. Mozilla says it will also automatically hide the browser controls when they aren’t in use, which should allow users to view more of the website you’re parked on. There’s also options to save PDFs, share pages, and customize the default search engine. Mozilla says that Firefox 4 is up to 3x faster than the stock Android browser. Firefox 4 for Android is available in the Market now, and the Maemo version can be downloaded here. More →
Ah yes, pulled from the deep, cold fjords of Norway comes a fresh release of Opera for Android. The latest code out of Oslo — Opera 5.1 for Android — brings with it a slew of improvements, including: the ability to be set as the default browser, better kinetic scrolling, improved pinch-to-zoom functionality, and better overall rendering speed. The app is sitting in the Android Market as we speak. Why don’t you go check out what your friends from Norway have come up with for you! Hit the bounce for the full press release. More →
Listen: It took six months of the App Store’s existence for Apple to approve the first batch of third-party browsers for the iPhone and iPod touch. It was a pretty damn exciting event because it was the sort of app everyone was used to being rejected because it replicates native features of the iPhone OS. Well, since then Apple rejected some pretty prolific apps for the same asinine reason to the point that even the flippin’ government took notice and started asking questions. And now, today, we have a new potential app disaster on our hands because Opera, the third-party mobile browser powerhouse, announced it will be previewing Opera Mini for iPhone next week at Mobile World Congress. Opera seems to think its app will be able to slide through the approval processes without issue, but we’re not going to get our hopes up just yet.
Totally random thought we’re just going to throw out there: Anyone think AT&T might be keen on seeing Opera Mini approved? Just think of the Draino of a job Opera’s data compression technology might do to unclog the long, hippie hair stuck in AT&T’s data pipes. More →
If anyone knows how to make a browser powerful, but user-friendly, it’s Mozilla. Fennec is going to be no different in terms of their end goal for the mobile browser. First, they intend to use every last bit of screen real-estate to the browser, removing all controls, tabs, and buttons that would take away from the body of the page. Sullivan says they want to “give over the entire screen of the device to the Web content, removing all user-interface controls entirely.” How will a user navigate, you ask? Certain screen controls and finger swipes (for touchscreens) will activate the UI controls in a snap. If that isn’t cool enough for you, future versions may also include support for haptic feedback. While this is all cool and snazzy, Fennec has its work cut out because the others (Safari, Opera, Blackberry, Symbian) have established themselves and are still making progress. For more info on Fennec and what its future holds, hit the link!