On Tuesday, Firefox 12 became the latest stable version of Mozilla’s flagship browser. As is typical in this age of short development cycles, Firefox 12 does not contain a whole lot of new functionality, but just the odd feature or two worth writing home about. Hit the jump for more.
Browser plugins like Flash and Java have always had their fair share of critics, but the clamor against them seems to be getting increasingly louder. Many of these critics no longer seem content with merely criticizing them, and instead want such plugins to be dispensed with at the earliest. Well, they now have a reason to pop the celebratory bubbly as Mozilla is working on incorporating a click-to-play mechanism for plugins in future versions of its flagship browser.
Downright malicious browser plugins and add-ons are obviously a massive security risk, but make no mistake unpatched or outdated extensions are just as big a headache. For this reason, Mozilla has a blocklist service to deal with plugins that jeopardize the security, stability, or performance of Firefox. The latest addition to the Firefox blocklist happens to be the ubiquitous Java plugin. Hit the jump for more.
For the past few years, it looked like Microsoft's Internet Explorer was well on its way to being usurped by spunky fan favorites. Early on it was Mozilla's Firefox that presented the biggest threat to IE's reign in the browser market, but more recently it's been Google's shiny Chrome browser that appeared to be on its way to the top, perhaps taking the lead this year. But then a funny thing happened. IE's share started to rise while Chrome's has been eroding.
These days it can be a bit difficult to get oneself excited about the release of a new version of a web browser, for the simple reason that it’s something that happens far too often. But if for some reason you still want to get your hands on Firefox 11 just before its official release on Tuesday, you can do so as the said version seems to have slipped out ahead of time.
It was almost a month ago that Mozilla announced it would be working on a Metro version of Firefox, however an important question remained. Would Metro Firefox be little more than a live tile that was more of a pain than it was worth? Or would Microsoft allow them to take over default access for opening links and other non-sandbox friendly operations? We finally have an answer, and even though it is still somewhat vague, it looks like Microsoft is going to great lengths to make sure users can replace Internet Explorer in metro should they feel so inclined.
Not a single month went by in 2011 in which Google's Chrome browser didn't grow its market share, and it's only moved in a backwards direction a few times since it was released nearly three and a half years ago in September 2008. At the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011, Chrome accounted for 10.36 percent of all desktop browsers, compared to Firefox's 23.69 percent and Internet Explorer's 58.35 percent. By the time 2011 came to a close, Chrome had grabbed a 19.11 percent share of the market, compared with Firefox's 21.83 percent and IE's 51.87 percent. But so far in 2012, Chrome has only given up browser market share.
With the release of Windows 8 widely expected to happen later this year, we have a lot to look forward to. The next version of Microsoft’s operating system is unique for its inclusion of a touch-friendly UI, called Metro, in addition to the classic Windows desktop environment that we have all gotten so used to over the years. Microsoft may have used college interns to develop sample Metro-style apps for the Windows 8 developer preview build, but you can look forward to seeing a number of triple-A third party apps at the time of Window 8’s launch. One such app will be Mozilla’s Firefox web browser.
Mozilla's rapid release schedule for its Firefox browser means there's always a new version just around the corner. To wit, almost immediately after rolling out Firefox 10 to the masses, Mozilla has made available the first build of Firefox 11 on its Beta channel. Firefox 11 makes it easier than ever to switch from Chrome, and if that's what you want to do, Mozilla's latest build will happily migrate your bookmarks, history, and cookies over from Google's browser.
Google's Chrome browser failed to increase its market share last month for just the second time in two years, while Microsoft's Internet Explorer added more than a percentage point, according to data by NetMarketShare. That's not the start to 2012 Google was hoping for, though there are still reasons to be optimistic about Chrome's future.