Firefox Mobile

We've been hearing a lot about Firefox mobile the past couple of weeks, and now that it's officially available for beta testing, the Firefox mobile team at Mozilla needs you to test things out.  Some of us are loving the fact that we can use Firefox on our Android phones, some not so much, but we all agree there's some improvement needed.  That's where we come in -- hit the source link where you can download the beta, or if you're the adventurous type one of the nightly builds, then start checking in and asking questions with the developers in the Mozilla Firefox developer forum right here at Android Central, where Mozilla's own Matt Brubeck is staying on top of things.  [dknite's blog]


Reader comments

Mozilla needs you to help beta test Firefox mobile for Android


Thanks, but no thanks. Regardless of how much better it will get, it's still Firefox. Firefox = slow. Besides, the standard browser is great. There are too many choices to be wasting time with a bloaty, slow app like Firefox. Sorry, but it's true. Mobile browsing has gotten much better, but it is still mobile browsing. You cannot put a desktop-sized browser on a phone and expect it to be fast. Even the desktop Firefox browser is slow, for crying outloud. Even when they shrink the size, it will still be too big and slow.

Downloaded it the other day to my Epic and it told me my memory was getting too low. Downfall with the Epic is limited local storage and they won't let you store apps on the SD card. Sorry Mozilla, I wanted to help, but my "Flagship" device has limited memory 6 weeks into use.

@thegingerbread man: Your device isn't limited on memory. The Firefox app takes up the space of about 30 normal sized apps.

So wouldn't that mean that my device is limited on memory for app storage? I'm not arguing and appreciate your response. Yes the file size was over 40 MB which is much larger than most apps. My understanding is that future updates will allow for app storage on the SD card. I know the concern is that people will be able to load apps onto other devices by simply loading their friend's Micro SD card. This brings me back to my early Palm Pre days when they limited the amount of local storage for apps. The problem was eventually fixed by Palm.

I greatly appreciate all the work that folks have into FireFox over the years but I fear they made a strategic error in releasing this beta.

I installed the beta as soon as I read about it and uninstalled shortly afterwards. It's pretty simple: the program is 12 megs. It takes up a lot of space but even worse is that it is SLOW to load (not surprising, given the size of the code) and just doesn't work all that well.

In contrast, Dolphin HD 4 beta 2 takes up 1.73 megs, performs better, has more options, and is much faster. It's hard to see how FireFox goes from 12 to around 2 megs no matter how many people beta test.

Afraid that the size of this beta will keep a lot of folks from even trying it.

Dolphin HD is a lot smaller because it isn't an entire web browser. It's just a front end for the stock Android browser engine that's already on your phone. Firefox Mobile is a full web browser, not just a front end. It uses its own engine and libraries. Anyways, Mozilla is targeting this at high end phones with ARMv7 processors. Most phones with ARMv7 processors have gigabytes of app storage available, so 12 MB is no big deal.

There will never be a point in time when 12MB is not a big deal.
At least not for many many years.

Who cares if it uses its own engine and libraries? The net result is a huge bloated app that is slow to load and chews up a ton of space once it is loaded.

If its not designed for our phones then test it on phones it IS designed for. But just because you have a fast processor is no excuse for writing slow-bloated-crappy code.

Why must ever advancement in processing power be wasted on Bloatware?

My Captivate has 2 GB allocated for apps. I could install over 150 apps this size without even having to use Apps2SD. Some Android phones have even more app storage. I don't know what phone you have, so maybe it's a big deal to you, but it's not to me. Our iPhone rivals have been running apps this size and larger for some time now. It's the norm for them.

Plus, and it's a big one, THIS IS A BETA, and an early one at that. It will be faster and use less memory when it's complete. It still has a ways to go.

Well, I tried it last night: was I impressed? No, Dolphin Browser does a much nicer job and it has video support, besides the stock browser works fine and has flash! Tested on a G2, was fast but stock is faster.

It's 12 megs, but runs at over 40. I understand that they are using their own library and plan on shrinking it a bit. But, it will still be too big, and painfully slow. Flash? Forget it!

The negatives so far; 30 MB for space. SLOOOOOOOOWWWW!, clunky and repeated force closes. I know it's Beta, but I expected more. This is a public Beta which usually means it is ready for release. If this is the public Beta and what we see is what will be released, than I will ultimately pass. With Opera Mini and Dolphin doing a better job i would suggest only playing around with FF Beta.

The positives: Clean and nice GUI interface. Things that are missing from Opera Mini and Dolphin in my experience so far. Another plus it can be run from the SD card, so space is not really an issue.

Last time I tried it I couldn't run it off the SD. When did they add that? Never mind just installed the latest nightly and it can be moved to SD

I've always been partial to firefox and was eager to try out the mobile version on my DX. Unfortunately it made my phone virtually unusable. Long periods of lockup immediately after I installed and after uninstall everything was back to normal.

Will try again after a couple updates.

Are you sure this is a beta? The way it acts and work, for my attempts to use it and for what I'm reading here is still in Alpha!

Make it work from SD card for starters, thing is too big, in beta you want to make it available to as much devices as possible I guess,
i don't see it getting much smaller.....
I was a Firefox fan, a while ago, but you are falling behind fast, very fast, and this dinosaur is not gonna bring your old fans back

It probably seems like an alpha build because it just came out of alpha. It's a very early beta. You probably forgot what a true beta is because a lot of companies these days just call their finished products beta to cover their ass if something doesn't work right. Betas are supposed to be buggy. If it's still this buggy and slow when it hits the RC stages, feel free to complain. Until then, go file bug reports so the problems can get fixed!

I have loaded this multiple time as they update it. It just loads to slow. It also continuously crashed on me. The fact that there is no flash support kind of sucks to. By the way I filed a lot of reports in the short time that's I had it on my phone.

Beta or not it sucks! It doesnt take up 12mb, it takes up 43.91 mb on my phone! When I saw that I thought it was going to be amazing... Nope! ...slow as can be on my droid incredible and no flash support. Don't know about your android phone but the incredibles browser is...well.. Incredible!! Lol only thing I would change is add better browser tabbing.

I never thought I would see the day when I would call Firefox "bloated", but yeah, it is. Compared to Chrome anyway.

Still not even remotely as bad as IE, but Chrome is just so much faster and smaller. And this comparison holds true on Android as well. And no flash support = fail.

I really wanted to like this.

I tried it on my Zenithink zt-180 and it wouldn't even open up. I've been waiting on this for a long time. I want to use my tablet at school for attendance but can't. Our website runs on firefox. Please fix this.