Firefox 4 Beta for Android and Maemo Now Available, Features Firefox Syn, Awesome Bar and Add-ons

Written By Sam on 10 October 2010

Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo has been in the works for several months now. With Mozilla now making the Beta version available to download and test, the company is busy highlighting the features that are likely to make it stand apart from other mobile browsers. The company informed that the beta version is built on the same technology platform as Firefox for the desktop; but the beta is optimized for browsing on a mobile phone and comes with Firefox desktop features including Firefox Sync, Add-ons, Touch Friendly UI and the Awesome Bar.

Notable Features that are new to Firefox 4 Beta include:

Electrolysis and Layers: With an emphasis on improving ‘performance and responsiveness,’ this beta reportedly brings the Layers pieces which improve overall performance. Expect improved graphics while scrolling, zooming and animations.

Firefox Sync: Aimed at creating an improved Web browsing experience between desktop and mobile, this feature allows a user to take your browsing history, bookmarks, tabs, passwords and form-fill data with you anywhere. This could mean never having to retype passwords or frequently used URLs again. Your Firefox data is completely encrypted end-to-end between your computers so that only you have access to it.

Pinch-to-zoom and Awesome Bar: This release comes with Pinch-to-zoom support for multitouch-capable devices, and the Awesome Screen features that instantly gives you access to your recent history, bookmarks and tabs just by tapping the Awesome Bar.

Add-ons: Firefox 4 Beta offers add-ons; pieces of software that let you change or add features, functionality and the look of your Firefox to fit your browsing lifestyle. You can search for and install add-ons directly to your Android phone from the Add-ons Manager located in your browser tools.

Greater flexibility for developers: Developers have the power to use the latest Web technologies like HTML5, CSS and JavaScript to build mobile apps and add-ons that can reach millions of devices. Mozilla looks forward to offering more add-ons in future releases.

Other highlights include:

  • Tabbed browsing in thumbnail view lets you easily see and open the site you want
  • Location-Aware Browsing gives you content and info relevant to your location
  • Find in Page in the Site Menu lets you quickly find text on the webpage
  • Share Page in the Site Menu lets you send content to email, Facebook, Twitter and Google Reader
  • Forget Password in the Site Menu tells a website you no longer trust to forget your private data
  • Add Search Engine in the Site Menu lets you quickly add a new search engine to your Awesome Screen
  • Context Menu lets you Open in New Tab and Share by long tapping and holding a link
  • Smart Tapping lets you tap on links, widgets and other Web content with accuracy
  • Password Manager lets you choose to remember site password to avoid typing.

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