The Mozilla Mobile Blog

News, notes and ramblings from the Mozilla Mobile Project.

Posts from January, 2011

Personas Go Mobile

Personas are easy-to-use themes that let you personalize the look of your Firefox browser with fun colors and designs. This feature is integrated in the desktop Firefox browser, but was not available yet on mobile.

This is not the case anymore, as you can style your Firefox for mobile browser with the Personas add-on. No more grey in your browser!

Personas on the awesomescreen

To dress up your browser, install the add-ons from the mobile Add-ons Manager. You’ll see the Personas button your Start page. Just tap the button and go directly to the Personas web site to choose a theme, and wear it by tapping on the orange button. This will change your theme on the fly, and add it to your list of recent themes in the Add-ons Manager pane.

The theme will apply to the title bar, the Awesome Screen and tools panels, as well as to the Find in Page and Form Assistant toolbars. You can even use animated ones!

Personas sidebar Personas find bar

“Best in Show” Add-on Developer Gives Back!

Our Add-ons Cup “Best in Show” winner, Chris Finke, won his title for developing Tapsure, an add-on that alleviates the pain of typing on a phone by allowing you to input passwords on sites by tapping a rhythm on your touchscreen. Check it out!

We were all thoroughly impressed with the concept, creativity and execution of Tapsure and were happy to award Finke with the “Best in Show” prize that includes a trip to Barcelona and a pass to attend Mobile World Congress. However, due to a personal matter, Finke is unable to attend and has elected to donate proceeds of his prize to Mozilla’s Open Web Fund, dubbed Drumbeat.

“Developing for the Web means that I can reach every connected person in the world with a single point of contact rather than having to develop apps for as many platforms as I can make time; the Web has proven to be the only true cross-platform solution,” says Finke. “Keeping the Web open means continued instant and unfettered access to my audience – no app store approval process, no third party constraints.  I can’t imagine it any other way, and the Open Web Fund is advancing this cause in a very real way.”

Drumbeat is focused on supporting practical projects and local events that gather smart, creative people around big ideas, solving problems and building the open Web. Thanks to Chris, $2500 will go to support Drumbeat’s various efforts and put these valuable dollars to extraordinary use. Take a look at some of our featured projects that will benefit!

“The Mozilla community believes we can, and must, keep the Web open,” says Mark Surman, Mozilla Foundation Executive Director. “That’s why we appreciate the support of those who can participate in practical ways by providing raw material for new kinds of innovation, creativity, wealth and democracy. We encourage others, like Chris, to participate in building a better Internet and keeping the Internet open for the long haul.”

Thanks again to everyone who contributed their time and energy to the Mobile Add-ons Cup and an extra thank you to Chris for his wonderful gift and commitment to keeping the Web open and free for everyone to enjoy!

Congrats Mobile Add-ons Cup Winners!

Congratulations to our Add-ons Cup winners. Our judges had an extremely difficult time choosing from the many fantastic and innovative mobile add-on submissions we received. The following add-ons are the winning selections per category:

  • Commerce: FinDeal by Almog Ben-kandil – Save both time and money by searching your preferred shopping websites simultaneously, easily and quickly.
  • Games: Page Eaters by Tamas Marki – Defend the web page from the page-eating bugs.
  • Geolocation: Near Me by Sriram Ramani – Search for interesting things relevant to your location.
  • Productivity: Home Links by Enrico Previdi – Customize the links that appear (such as mail client, search engine, news, etc.) when you tap on the home button.
  • Social: Less Spam, Please by Benoit Bailleux – When adding a comment to a blog, for instance, generate a temporary and anonymous email address to prevent usage by unwanted third parties.
  • Novelty: Tapsure by Chris Finke – Input passwords on websites by tapping a rhythm on your touchscreen rather than typing.

Congratulations to Chris Finke. Tapsure also won the title of Best in Show!

Vote for Your Favorite
You’ve heard what the judges had to say, now it’s up to you to decide the People’s Favorite. Vote for your favorite of the six category winners before Friday, January 28.

How to Install Add-ons
1) On your Android or Nokia N900, go to Firefox.com/m (or the Android Market) and install Firefox 4 Beta.
2) Swipe left, tap on the browser tools (gear) and go to the Add-ons Manager (puzzle piece).
3) You will see these add-ons featured under Get Add-ons. If you not see the add-on, you can type in the name of the Add-on directly into the search field.
4) Tap on the add-on you’d like to install and select Add to Firefox.

Hear From Our Winners
Some of our winners shared their inspiration for developing their add-ons:

“The context of search in mobile is restricted mostly to finding places around people. I explored this idea to make it easy to search for places of interest, and also reduce typing. The openness of Mozilla helped me explore its code, find how certain add-ons are built and helped me develop this add-on.” – Sriram Ramani, Near Me

“I’m very concerned about privacy. I think that this is one of the most important things that we should be able to control; I don’t want my email address to be used and sold by a third-party. I wrote ‘Less Spam, Please’ for Firefox and for my personal use.  I realized that a smartphone contains most of our digital life and is more sensible than anything else.” – Benoit Bailleux, Less Spam, Please

“Typing passwords on mobile devices is terrible. If you have even a reasonably strong password, it can take more than a few seconds to type it out on a phone’s keypad or on-screen keyboard. In this day and age, that’s time you just don’t have!  Tapsure is an extension for Firefox for mobile that alleviates this problem by allowing you to input passwords on websites by tapping a rhythm on your touchscreen rather than hunting through the device’s keyboard.” – Chris Finke, Tapsure

Thanks again to all of those who took the time to enter the Mobile Add-ons Cup! Now give them a try and remember to vote for your favorite!

Mobile Add-ons Cup CLOSED

The Mobile Add-ons Cup Challenge has officially come to a close. I had fun today testing and trying out some fantastic entries for the following categories: gaming, social, shopping, productivity, geolocation and novelty. The judges will be busy this week testing add-ons and giving each submission thorough consideration. We will do our best to notify our participants, finalists and the Grand Prize winner by the end of this week, January 14. We’ll be announcing the results the following week.

I am so excited for how Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo is shaping up. The add-ons and and growing gallery of add-ons is fantastic to see and use. I can’t wait for others to discover and use add-ons that fit their browsing style perfectly! Stay tuned!