The Mozilla Mobile Blog

News, notes and ramblings from the Mozilla Mobile Project.

Posts by clooney@mozilla.com

Mozilla Firefox 4 Release Candidate for Android and Maemo Now Available

Mozilla Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo is now available as a release candidate in more than 10 languages from the Android Market and for download on your Maemo device.

This release offers faster scrolling, better responsiveness with Firefox Sync and improves the overall user experience of Firefox. Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo brings the performance and customization of Firefox to mobile devices with features like Firefox Sync, Awesome Screen, tabbed browsing and Firefox Add-ons, to create a personalized and effortless mobile browsing experience.

Watch this video to see what’s new in Firefox for Android and Maemo:

We are working closely with Firefox Add-ons developers to ensure their add-ons are ready for users to customize the features, look and functionality of Firefox 4. For more information on how to create or update add-ons to be compatible with Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo, please read this blog post.

We build Firefox with help from our contributors and beta testers. Please help test the release candidate and provide feedback to prepare Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo for a final release.

For more information:

  • Give feedback – Tap on Give Feedback on the Firefox Start page
  • Get help – Ask a question and get answers with Firefox for mobile Support
  • See the release notes for a full list of features, updates and improvements included in this release.
  • List of supported devices

Mobile Add-on Developers: Get Compatible & Earn a Shirt

Thanks to all who have contributed to the Mozilla mobile project and submitted a mobile add-on for Firefox. Make sure you add-on is compatible with our upcoming final release of Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo! For more information about building and maintaining mobile add-ons for  Firefox, please see the Mobile Extensions Wiki.

Thanks to you, users continue to comment on how powerful mobile add-ons have been to their browsing  experience. Firefox continues to be in the top 25 free productivity apps in the Android Market and we’re only in beta!

As we move closer to releasing Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo, we’d like to ask everyone at this time to make their add-on compatible for Firefox 4 final release. We’d like your add-ons to get the exposure and recognition they deserve by making them available for users to install.

What’s more, if you submit a Firefox 4-compatible mobile add-on by Monday, March 28, we’ll send you a Mozilla Firefox T-shirt! Simply submit your add-on by 23:59 PST, email us at fx4-compatibility AT mozilla DOT com, with “Mobile Add-on” in the subject line, a link to your mobile add-on, your address, your t-shirt size and we’ll  reach out to you to organize the delivery of your t-shirt.

For more information about building and maintaining mobile add-ons for  Firefox, please see the Mobile Extensions Wiki.

Firefox for mobile is on the move!

We’re going mobile…and heading down to the Lone Star state!  That’s right, Firefox for mobile will be cruising around SXSW Interactive March 11-15, and we have some sweet treats in store for you. Now, all you have to do is find us! If you happen to be in the Austin area, follow us @mozmobile to learn our location each night, check-in, and earn some goodies…like The Mozilla Chilla, or the FoxByFoxCream, for instance. (What could it be?) If you aren’t in the area, follow us anyway and get the latest and greatest news and info about Firefox for mobile!

New Recommended Mobile Add-on: Quit Fennec

Some people like to leave their running apps open, while others like to close them. Appropriately named, Quit Fennec, lets you close Firefox for Android when you press the “close” button on the last tab you have open.

The Android OS automatically pauses applications when they are in the background, and closes them when free memory is needed. So most users shouldn’t need to “quit” applications in Android. But for developers, testers, and add-on authors, it is useful to have a quick way to quit and restart Firefox for Android. Enjoy!

Home Links Add-on Wins People’s Choice Vote!

Congratulations to Enrico Previdi and his Home Links add-on for Firefox for mobile.

Hundreds of mobile supporters and users voted for Home Links as their favorite add-on submitted in the Mobile Add-ons Cup.

This productivity add-on  gives you the ability to have your home button behave similarly to the home button on desktop browser, but instead, lets you save up to 4 links to open quickly by tapping on your home button. When you’re on a site that you want make a “home base” just tape on the Site Menu and tap on “Set shortcut for home button.” So simple, yet so seamless and helpful!

Home Links is a Recommended add-on in Firefox for mobile and easily discoverable in the mobile Add-ons Manager. Just got to your Browser Tools, tap on the Add-ons Manager to install Home Links in one tap. Try it today!

“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!

Submit Your Mobile Add-on for a Chance to Win a Trip to Barcelona!

The Firefox Mobile Add-ons Cup has arrived!

Develop a mobile add-on for Firefox and showcase your innovation to millions of mobile users. We’re looking for compatible and innovative add-ons to extend Firefox on the Android and Maemo mobile platforms.

We’re looking for the best example in each of the categories below:

  • Sports/Games
  • Commerce/ Shopping
  • Geolocation
  • Productivity
  • Sharing/Social
  • Novelty/Innovation

We invite developers of all experience levels to participate in creating awesome add-ons for Firefox mobile. You’ll be rewarded with fantastic prizes and tons of exposure between now and January 7, 2011 when the contest wraps. Enter now and start creating your add-on today!

But Wait, There’s More!
We’ve got a serious panel of judges that include industry experts and mobile visionaries that will be judging the submissions and awarding a winner in each category. The prize for each category winner receives:

  • $1000 in cash
  • Android or Maemo phone of your choice
  • Placement on the Firefox for mobile Start Page
  • Showcased in a Featured Add-ons video distributed across Mozilla channels
  • Blog post and Rock your Firefox spotlight

Of the 6 finalists, judges will also choose a Best in Show grand prize winner who will receive the above prizes, plus a full conference pass to Mobile World Congress 2011, plus 4 nights accommodation in Barcelona!

Early Bird Challenge
The Firefox Mobile Add-on Cup is packed full of exposure and prizes for add-on developers, but we have one more. If your add-on is submitted by December 17, we’ll send you a limited edition Firefox 4 Beta shirt!

Check the Cup site for more information, rules and resources to help you get started. Good luck!

New Suggested Mobile Add-on: Easy Reading


Easy Reading, developed by our very own Brad Lassey and Ben Stover, is a really handy add-on for reading content on your mobile. It’s an add-on that helps text reflow into a more reader friendly format when you zoom in on copy that’s too small to read. Just double tap to zoom in and text will reflow so that you can easily read your content on your screen. Simple as pie! Enjoy!