The Mozilla Mobile Blog

News, notes and ramblings from the Mozilla Mobile Project.

Posts in the “Add-ons” category

Phony Featured in Rock Your Firefox

Seeing content designed for the desktop when browsing on your mobile? Seeing slimmed down mobile sites when you want to interact with the full site on your mobile or tablet? Firefox for mobile’s restartless add-on, Phony, lets you easily choose exactly how you want to view websites, regardless of the device you’re using. Read the complete Rock Your Firefox post here.

Whether, you’re on a tablet, desktop, iPhone or Android you can use Phony to select the user agent of your choice. Phony gives you the best of all mobile worlds, and you can update your user agent on the fly.

Get Phony on Firefox for mobile by selecting the Add-ons manager and selecting it from the list of recommended add-ons. Just install the add-on (and you don’t even need to restart), go to your Preferences and select ‘User Agent’ to change your settings to masquerade around as the device of your choice. Enjoy!

New Recommended Add-on: Adblock Plus!

It’s finally here folks! The loved and highly acclaimed Adblock Plus for mobile!

Annoyed by adverts? Troubled by tracking? Bothered by banners? Install Adblock Plus now to regain control of the internet and change the way that you view the web on your phone.

Watch this short video to lsee it in action. (The example takes place on a desktop, but the same can be achieved on your Android.) Enjoy!

Popular Mobile Add-ons for Firefox

There are tons of great new innovations in our growing mobile add-ons gallery. We took a handful of our most popular so you could see their features and functionality. Search for and install any of these add-ons from the Add-ons Manager in Firefox for mobile and give ‘em a try! Developers: build a compatible mobile add-on for Firefox so we can showcase your add-on as well!

The mobile add-ons featured in this video are: Personas, Phony, Twitter Bar, Home Links and Tapsure. Enjoy!

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.

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!

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!

“Phony” and “Bigger Text” Added to the Featured Mobile Add-ons List

Our second release of Firefox 4 Beta for Android and Maemo is live! Download it and tell us what you think. Thanks to everyone for their continued support and feedback.

A great feature in Firefox 4 Beta is the personalized Start page that provides instant access to the tabs you had open last time you were browsing on your mobile, tabs from your other computers, and it even suggests you add-ons that will help you get the most out of your Firefox.

Two newly featured add-ons, that will also appear as suggested add-ons on the Start page, are “Phony” and “Bigger Text,” which have been developed by our very own Matt Brubeck.  Both of these add-ons address some of the pain points that our users have flagged for us. These add-ons will serve as great additions while we continue to improve Firefox for mobile.

Phony: Some websites don’t yet detect Firefox as a mobile browser. With Phony, you can load different versions of mobile web sites by changing the “useragent” string to match iPhone, Android, or desktop browsers. Warning: Some iPhone- or Android-optimized sites may not work correctly in mobile Firefox.

Use Phony: Go to your Browser Tools (gear button) > Preferences pane.  “User Agent” will be the top menu item. Tap on the drop-down menu and select your platform of choice.

Bigger Text: Sometimes websites are hard to read on a small screen with their normal fonts. With this add-on installed, you can open the site menu and press the “Bigger Text” button to enlarge the text on any page. Simple as pie!

Use Bigger Text: Tap on the Website ID (favicon next to Awesome Bar) and the Bigger Text button will be listed in the Site Menu. Tap on it and the text will enlarge.

Install them and let us know what you think. Go to your Browser Tools and tap on the Beta Tester button to provide your feedback right from Firefox mobile.