Fennec (Mobile Firefox) has reached milestone 8 (M8). You can install it on a Nokia N8x0 and take it for a spin. One of the big improvements during this milestone was the addition of several Mozilla QA team members. Fennec is being tested pretty hard now, and by people who love to find bugs. We are finding and fixing lots of issues now. Probably the biggest visible change in M8 is the new theme. It’s not entirely landed yet and will likely get some tweaks as we iterate on the design.
Although Fennec is still only targeted for the Nokia N8x0, that should be changing fairly soon. Work on Windows Mobile has heated up quite a bit. We should be getting some Fennec builds for WinMo soon. We have also seen Fennec showing up on other hardware too: Fennec on e-paper. Fennec on OMAP. Fennec in Ångström.
Some of the highlights in M8:
- Initial UI support panel has landed. Tap “gear” button in the right sidebar to slide the UI panel into view. The UI panel contains separate panels for Add-on Manager, Download Manager and Preferences. The current UX design is not final. We need to integrate the new UI theme into the UI panel.
- The sidebars (left, right and top) now slide into view as the user pans the content. The application menu button (F4) no longer forces the UI into view.
- Support for kinetic scrolling has been enhanced and is more responsive.
- The installer uses the Fennec icon and should prompt for the install menu location. It defaults to “Extras”.
- A lot of work on rendering performance landed in M8. This includes front-end and back-end platform work.
- Support for a Firefox-like security error UI and pages, instead of error alert dialogs.
- Support for out-of-memory notifications.
Several features just missed M8 and will be landing very soon:
- Ability to close tabs
- Opening new browser windows as tabs (like in Firefox)
- Initial Preferences support
- Camera input support?
Note: M8 disables all plugins, including Flash. We found serious stability and performance issues with plugins. We intend to re-enable plugins as soon as possible.
As always, please take Fennec M8 for a spin and file some bugs.