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Firefox Mobile Beta Will Hit Android Market Later this Month

We’ve been following the journey of Firefox Mobile on Android since its “Fennec” days and keep wondering when it might see a build spicy enough for the Android Market.  According to Matt Brubeck, one of the Firefox Engineers, the time is near as a new beta release should be available some time in December and will be downloadable through the market.  In response to some poor AT&T customer who is unable to install 3rd party apps, Matt mentioned the following…

If it is, then you might be able to use the Android developer tool “adb” to install Firefox on your phone (search the web for instructions), or you can wait for our next beta release which should be available through the Market later this month.

Is everyone ready for an official Firefox?  We’ve been through how many alphas, betas and test builds now?  Can it compete with Dolphin, xScope and the rest of those well-established browser options?

Cheers Manny!

  • waegwanjohn

    FireFox Beta 4 solved some problems for me. On my job I have some https site that have internal sliders that I need to access several times a day I have tried all of the other browsers and then some mentioned on this site to include an earlier version of FireFox for Droid and none of them would #1 log on the the https consistantly and #2 work the sliders within the websites every time and smoothly. For sure, the FireFox Beta 4 is slow and I will use the Android 2.2 Stock for most browsing, reading news etc. But in my particular case I have to give FireFox beta 4 thumbs up.

  • Hopefully they reduced the size of the app … way too big for a browser. Also, when I'm mobile speed >>> features, and the stock browser rules at that. This coming from a fan of Firefox on the desktop.

  • Yes, I still waiting for this browser to using on my phone. I feel bored with the default one.

  • Mr. Joe

    I tried it back when it was Fennec and tried it twice when it was Firefox. All I got from it was lag, force close, and just complete unstable.

  • “Can it compete with Dolphin, xScope and the rest of those well-established browser options?”

    No. It can't even compete with the stock browser. It's too big and too slow.

    • Li

      Ah, so you've used the recent builds which are around 17MB and faster than any other mobile browser b/c of tracemonkey and hardware acceleration?
      Come on people, stop parroting the hip tech trends and actually try these things!

  • picaso86

    no thank you…have you seen the size file?

  • NathanS

    I've had it on my Moto Droid since the first Fennac Alpha was released.
    Sadly, its too slow to really use. Yes, I've kept up with the various updates and the Beta releases.
    At times the phone becomes nearly unresponsive.

    Loaded it on my wifes Droid 2 and it works fine there. I guess the 60% speed increase of the D2 helps.

    I do hope they get the file size down and the speed up.
    Extensions, bookmark sync, just to begin with.

  • D3fault121

    I hope they made it a smaller file size. Last beta that came out was huge like 30mb and was almost un usable.

    • Pope Wilson

      When Firefox first rolled onto the scene, they were known for the small package .. I thought it was ironic when this one came around at a dominating 30 mb's haha

      • It's because Dolphin etc use the stock browsers rendering engine (webkit) whilst Firefox brings along its own (Gecko) so it will naturally have to be quite large, Opera Mobile isn't small either.

  • chrismcconkey

    It would be nice to have Firefox on my OG Droid, I would finally get to admin some of the sites that I have to deal with.

  • El El Kool J

    video runs fine on it, speed is acceptable, rom devs never try to change it, oh and its FREE
    Stock browser ftw!! 😛

  • Motoblah

    Some poor AT&T customer…hehe

  • Etbass

    I like the Miren Browser

  • last time I tried firefox on my droid x it took longer than a minute to launch… uninstalled immediately. 🙁 Don't have high hopes for it at all.

  • BrowserBooh

    It would have to do many of the things that Stock does well, and handle flash videos like Skyfire. I don't much care for Xscope, especially the paid app, nor Dolphin Browser, which is just slow, and bloated with things I'll never use. We'll see. I'll give Firefox a try, if it meets my needs, I'm game.

    Xscope – Didn't we learn the lesson of Opera w/ its paid browser? In the long run, the model doesn't work, and with so many browser options, you'll have to resort to freeware w/ an advertising model.

    Dolphin Browser – Extremely overrated, and wildly under performing.

    Firefox Beta – Too well, beta.

    Skyfire – Love that it handles video well, but hate the Facebook integration.

    Stock browser – Fast, can handle video well (though not as well as Skyfire, but better than Dolphin HD). Bad: No tab support. Multiple windows is ok, but tabs are better. Skyfire, Opera, Dolphin all have that.

    Opera: Never understood the hype. It's nice, but others outperform it.

  • Maybe it's just me but Firefox is so overrated already.

    • Timoh

      Not just you, I agree.

      As I type this from firefox at work…

    • Drox2k

      I'm not even going to bother to download it this time. I have such bad taste in my mouth from their last attempt which was super slow and majorly sucked all together.

  • If it is faster than XScope, I might make the switch. Xscope seems to be the one to beat in speed right now.

    • The350zWolf

      Not to mention customization via themes. Okay folks that love the stock browser, this is your “q” to chime in…