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  1. #1
    DF PwNagE Simate's Avatar
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    Default Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    October - 8 - 2010

    Yesterday Mozilla launched the beta version of Firefox 4 for Android and Maemo called Fennec, it is built on the same platform as the desktop version and features Firefox Sync, Adds on, Awesome bar and others.



    According to the official announcement this beta version differs from the alpha version in two cases, namely with Electrolysis and Layers. The app works on such way, it splits the browser into two processes: the first for user interface and the second to render the web content. The layers architecture helps users in performance allowing such acts as scrolling, zooming, and animations.
    Due to Firefox 4 Beta’s Firefox Sync feature browses history, bookmarks, tags, and passwords synced across your mobile and desktop devices. The next change – Awesome bar, is intended for access to recent history, bookmarks and tabs.
    Beside these changes Mozilla is going to make its new browser faster to be out of competition among other mobile browsers.

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Release notes

    Spoiler:
    Fennec is the codename of Mozilla’s mobile project, however, the official product name is Firefox.
    Shipping with many of your favorite Firefox desktop features like Firefox Sync, Add-ons and the Awesome Bar, this beta release brings Firefox to the Android platform, the fastest growing smartphone platform in the world.
    The foundation of this release is based on enhanced performance and responsiveness, specifically around a technology called “Layers” that greatly improves performance in graphic intensive actions like scrolling, zooming and animations. Enhanced responsiveness, in conjunction with new and improved features that help customize your Firefox, make this release a user friendly and personalized experience.
    Get Up and Go Shipping with the Firefox Sync feature built-in, Firefox 4 beta 1 synchronizes your Firefox history, bookmarks, open tabs, passwords and form data between your desktop and mobile. Just login with your Firefox Sync account info and Firefox gets to know you right away, taking you to your favorite parts of the Web with barely any typing. Don't worry about switching to a new phone, or having to type long URLs or passwords again. You can even leave your desktop in a moment’s notice and pick up right where you left off on your mobile phone.
    Add-ons Firefox 4 Beta 1 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 or Nokia N900 from the Add-ons Manager located in your browser tools. We look forward to offering more add-ons in future releases.
    Personalized Start Page Pick up where you left off with your new personalized Start page. Get instant access to your Firefox desktop tabs, the tabs you had open last time you were browsing on your phone, the Awesome Bar, and get suggestions for useful add-ons.
    Awesome Screen The Awesome Screen pops up just by tapping on the Awesome Bar (location bar). It gets to know you and instantly brings up a smart list of your favourite history items and bookmarks and lets you easily select a search engine for your desired search. You can also customize your search engine list for maximum efficiency.
    Touch Friendly UI Swipe to the left or right of your screen to access your tabs, browser controls and tools, which are stowed out of the way while you browse the Web. Typing on a phone is hard, that's why you can bookmark a site with one tap, view tabs as thumbnails to easily see and open the page you want, and use the Awesome Screen to get to where you want to go in just a few a keystrokes.
    Responsiveness Speed and responsiveness is one of the major focuses of this release. This has been implemented using two major technologies, “Electrolysis” and “Layers.” Electrolysis allows the browser interface to run in a separate process from the one rendering Web content, reacting much faster to user input while pages are loading or CPU intensive JavaScript is running. This release has taken advantage of Layers to improve performance in graphic intensive actions like scrolling, zooming and animations.
    More personalized than ever before, Firefox 4 beta 1 is packed with your favorite features and great improvements. Other highlights include:

    • Pinch-to-zoom (Android), double-tap, or use the volume rocker (Nokia N900) to zoom in and out
    • 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




    Download

    Download Firefox 4 beta 1 by visiting [Only registered and activated users can see links. ] on your Android phone, or Nokia N900. Visit the [Only registered and activated users can see links. ] page to make sure your phone meets the Android system requirements.


    • Firefox is compatible with Android 2.0 and above devices.
    • Installation requires approximately 32MB internal storage, plus 12MB SD storage.

    Takes up a lot of room!

  2. #2
    DF Jedi OrangeJuicey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    I tried it on htc desire and it seems okay. Its a bit slow so I won't be using it as the default. All the features look nice though. Also it uses 45mb of space which is pretty large for an android app.

  3. #3
    DF PwNagE Simate's Avatar
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    Default Re: Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeJuicey View Post
    I tried it on htc desire and it seems okay. Its a bit slow so I won't be using it as the default. All the features look nice though. Also it uses 45mb of space which is pretty large for an android app.
    The size of it is a bit much for a web browser. No doubt there'll be a lot of feedback about that and hopefully Mozilla will do something about it to make it a lot smaller.

  4. #4
    DF Jedi Northernbloke's Avatar
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    Default Re: Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    Runs nice on N900, little bit slower than MicroB which does everything I need it to currently, so will keep that as my main browser and play with Fennec for a while

  5. #5
    DF PwNagE Simate's Avatar
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    Default Re: Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    Installing it now, will have a play whilst cooking dinner.

    Got a problem straight away on my Desire. Went to type [Only registered and activated users can see links. ], when I press the . it backspaces! I am using Swiftkey, maybe that's the problem. I like Swiftkey, so I won't be getting rid. I will try the stock kb and see if that's the problem.

    Edit: No go still, uninstalled Skwiftkey to test so I'm back to the stock kb, when I type the letters show up to confirm what I pressed but no actual characters are typed in the search box, the cursor just sits there blinking away. Oh, and it displayed Chinese characters on the keyboard the fist, second and third time I loaded it, then finally went to English, very odd. Everything else is fine though.

    Edit 2: After trying a power down and back on after removing Swiftkey in the hope that would work, I just loaded FF and the keyboard is in bloody Chinese again!

    Edit 3: Decided it's shit. Uninstalled.

    Edit 4 lol: Just realised I didn't change the input method. I assumed uninstalling Swiftkey would set if back to default but it hasn't. Time to try again lol.

    Edit 5: Changed input method and now it works, strange as everything worked ok. Anyway, yeah it's shit which is a shame as I only use FF on my laptop and desktop. There doesn't seem to be an option to not display the mobile version of websites. It renders text a bit shit too. I will go back to it in time once it's developed more.
    Last edited by Simate; 10th October 2010 at 08:38 PM.

  6. #6
    DF VIP Member Ganty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Firefox 4 Beta 1 for Android

    It's absolute tosh. Worst browser I've used, which is a shame because its all i use on my desktop.

    Running it on a Desire FYI.

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