UPDATED 14:29 EST / NOVEMBER 04 2010

Firefox 4 Updates Android Beta: Speedy and Clean

Firefox 4 Beta for Mobile is‘available for download in 10 languages on Android or Maemo devices.The bulk of the changes revolve around the mobile browser’s look and feel, with updates for the UI, and speed.  From Mozilla’s blog:

A few new things you’ll see in this release include a new theme that gives Firefox a fresh new look, the ability to easily share links with your friends from the Site Menu and the ability to undo closing a tab. Learn more about the Firefox UI improvements from Madhava Enros, our Lead UX Designer.

In this release we also worked to make Firefox 4 Beta faster. Actions like panning and zooming are faster and smoother, and page load times are reduced from our previous beta. On Android 2.2, we’re now around 25% faster on the SunSpider Javascript benchmark than the stock browser.

Having taken into consideration the feedback of the customers, the team managed to offer a version requiring a 60% less install size ‘Due to some technical limitations on Android, upgrading won’t remove some of the old files that are no longer needed.

Therefore, you must uninstall the previous beta before you will see the size improvements.’, improved text rendering and reduced memory usage. Users are also offered a new theme, an increase in running speed and reduced page load times.

Feedback is still important for the developers team thus the submitting Feedback button can now be found in the Browser Controls panel. The procedure for submitting crash reporting has also been simplified.

In all, mobile browsing is still picking up a lot of speed, and Firefox is battling two forefronts to maintain relevance in the mobile and PC world.  A recent study indicates that mobile users are begining to prefer mobil browsing over the use of apps.


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