Firefox for Android

Android 2.0+ The development of Firefox for Android -- for all mobiles, actually, has been a long one. And today, it's finally reached beta status for Android. Again, that's beta -- not a full-fledged release, so there may still be bugs about. Keep that in mind. We're going to go give it a spin and check in later after some quality playtime. Download now at firefox.com/m/beta. [Mozilla]

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Reader comments

Firefox for Android hits Beta status

50 Comments

Cmon, it's a beta. Give'em a break. I'm sure it will be more refined as it nears version 1.0 release.

I've gotta be honest, I use Firefox on my pc's, but I see no reason to use it on my Incredible. The stock browser has never let me down, so unless Firefox adds something I'm not aware of, why should I use it over stock?

It's in beta and my impression is that it's a real beta not just a buzzword to get people to use it or cover their asses if something breaks.

Therefore you really only should use it if you're interested in trying things out to help test and see how it changes through the development cycles.

That being said, it's being built on the same technology as the desktop browser so once they get it stable and up to the level of other browsers (who knows, maybe this one is now) it will be much easier for them to add lots of fun new features.

Some reasons to use Firefox:

  • Two-way sync of boomarks, URLs, tabs, form data, and passwords between your phone and computer.
  • Convenient interface for switching between tabs while browsing.
  • Add-ons to customize the UI and behavior.
  • Much faster at JavaScript than the Android 2.1 browser (and the next release will even be faster at some benchmarks than the Android 2.2 browser).
  • Supports some web technologies that the stock browser doesn't, like SVG.

Of course, Firefox is still in beta, and the stock browser is still better at some things. If you don't have much space on the phone, then you might want to stick with the stock browser. But if you do, then you can install both and have more choices.

Thanks! Those are good reasons - especially the two-way sync. In fact, that alone will get me to use the final version.

Swiftkey isn't playing nice with Firefox....at least for me. Everytime I try to put a period for anything it deletes the previous letter and puts the period their. Had to switch to the stock android keyboard for it to work.

Size matters not when you have the greatest android phone on the planet. All hail lord X! been running the fox since alpha.

@moosc Droid X best phone? When did that happen? Did I sleep through that. Last time I checked best phone of 2010 went to the EVO. Droid is nice but misses some key features. Like 4G does it has a front facing camera? Anyway, not here to bash the Droid X. Just wanted to make sure that it is the EVO that earned the title best phone. Just saying.

Firefox for Android nice idea. Lot of work to be on the level of Dolphin HD or Skyfire. There are just so many browser out for the Android OS that Firefox need to be so special that it sticks out of the bunch of great browsers that Android has. Time will tell if Firefox can deliver.

Your evo may have 4g and front facing camera and that wins an award. Yea pull your heads out the X out performs the Evo in every aspect. Better processor, better graphics better memory management don't need to worry about moving apps to SD better battery management on the nations best network.

FireFox needs more adjustment can't adjust font booming is still rough. I'll stick to opera

@moosc I think it's not only those 2 things that won EVO best phone of 2010 went it's probably also the fact that you can use besides a front facing camera. Download speeds by around 9000 10000.. it's also the fact that you can surf websites and talk at the same time and you can use 8 not 4 or 5 actually 8 other devices connected to EVO and use it as an wifi modem. Hmmm I guess those things just put it on the winning road.

Not to mention the fact that i save $1200 a YEAR being on sprint with my amazing Evo.. that makes your x SO OVER PRICED!!!! BAAAAAAAAAAM!!

So it's not so bad. Will I use it over the stock browser? No, but it's come a long way. Speed is relatively snappy, but transitions are not smooth. Also, I really dislike the way text is rendered on my Evo - nowhere near as clear as the stock browser at the same zoom level. Very hard to read.

It's almost there, I think. But not yet.

I love Firefox mobile but until the speed picks up and it doesn't lag so much then I'm going to use something else. I can't wait to see what happens for firefox mobile.

Froze my Droid up twice, to the point of having to remove my battery to get her up and running again. Hardly beta, should be alpha still. I couldn't even get to a web page before it locked up my phone.

The only reason this ff is around on my droid is for ntlm authentication. Being a SharePoint admin it makes my life much much easier.

Bad news... force closes on the myTouch 3G Slide running 2.1. Not good! Back to the drawing board boys!

I'm gonna try the nightly builds apk. one.. So I will be getting updates faster (some might be unstable, I know) but I will see beta builds before others? :D

Pinch to Zoom is terrible and needs works. The pinching is inaccurate. It seems to zoom in AROUND where you pinched. Also noticed that the images and fonts don't smooth out when you PTZ either. Also takes a minute to load. - Droid Inc.

Once the beta is a bit more refined I'll consider it, I think a lot of people would switch if even half of those sync features work... Opera has some basic bookmark synchronization but I don't use it on the desktop so it's only useful as a bookmark backup tool.

What's the process for tab switching right now on the beta? I love how the stock Sense browser hides all toolbars when zoomed in but I'm getting tired of trapping thrice to switch tabs. It seems to me that an additional level of pinch to zoom would be more seamless, so that it zooms out of your current tab to a preview of all tabs, like the rosie launcher.

It's a feature that actually seems kinda pointless on the launcher, but would work awesome for tab browsing imo... Just a thought.

I'm running the 2.2 leak for the Captivate. There is a bug in the stock browser that makes scrolling extremely choppy so I decided to give this a go.

Pages load fast and scrolling is extremely smooth, even while loading pages. Yeah, it still uses a lot of memory and forces other apps out of memory sometimes, and there are choppy transitions sometimes, but that's to be expected in a beta. It has come a LONG way since the alpha and I'm really excited about this project now. Read some of Matt's blog. Very interesting features, especially the OpenGL rendering and multiple processes to make scrolling butter smooth!

unlike most of the people above I think firefox is doing a great job with this browser, and I'm really excited to see how the end result turns out.

All synced up with my PC now. Seems like it has improved vs. the previous alpha version. It still appears to use quite a bit more memory vs the stock browser. Looking forward to seeing where this goes.

This slowed down my Evo to a crawl. Stock browser, no issues. That's a deal-breaker from the start.

Mozilla team, make it lean and mean. Not for prime time yet.

Installed it--5 minutes later.. uninstalled it. Nice design, especially for navigating windows(or tabs). I'll wait for a final build. I didnt like the rendering of pages or was to happy with the pinch to zoom and double tap features.

can't wait for the Adblock Plus extension to work in it. Mozilla is on the right track -- could use smarter double-tap and pinch-to-zoom response. I love how the default browser adjusts the text perfectly to fit my Incredible's screen size.

The single greatest feature that I am desperately waiting for. I so much hate advertising. As a day one www user I still feel there is no place on the web for it.

Odd about the size of this. Said 11.9 in one area of the phone then 40 in another, Motorola Droid. And when I installed it it lagged everything else on the phone and caused other applications to FC, so unfortunately, uninstalled for the time being. Looking forward to checking this out eventually.

40 megabytes, no flash support, pasge renewing not that great. I see no reason to use this browser, there are other third party browsers that blow this one away.

I installed this last night on my Dinc and had to almost immediately uninstall, because it was causing my phone to say low storage. Before I uninstalled it though I cleaned out my old messages and deleted a bunch of never used apps and it still said low storage. After it was off my phone, no problems. Weird Huh?

Beta or not this is crap. Has any one even noticed the installed size? Its not 12 megs its closer to 40! WHY! This is not very quick and it doesn't even look good.

I think I will wait until they address the speed, flash, text reflow and stability issues. So basically when it is out of beta! :0