Mozilla Planning to Release Firefox iOS App in the Future

firefoxMozilla's Firefox browser may soon make its way to iOS, according to a statement made by Firefox VP Jonathan Nightingale at an internal Mozilla event. Relayed by Firefox release manager Lukas Blakk and shared by TechCrunch, Nightingale reportedly told Mozilla employees "We need to be where our users are so we're going to get Firefox on iOS."

The statement about releasing Firefox for iOS marks a major shift in ideology for Mozilla, as the company has, in the past, repeatedly said that it would not offer a version of Firefox for iOS because of Apple's refusal to allow third-party browsers to use their own web engines. In 2013, then VP of product Jay Sullivan said that Moziila didn't "feel like it could build the browser it wants" on Apple's platform, and that it had "no plans" for an iOS version of Firefox.

One of the major points of contention for Mozilla was Apple's refusal to allow the Firefox browser to carry over its rendering and JavaScript engines to iOS, as Apple imposes strict restrictions on third-party browsers and limits them to the company's own JavaScript engines. Prior to iOS 8, this meant that third-party browsers were slower than Apple's Safari, but with iOS 8, Apple began allowing third-party browsers to take advantage of previously unavailable features like the JavaScript Nitro Engine.

An inability to provide custom web engines along with the lack of an option to set a third-party browser as the default browser makes it difficult for companies like Chrome, Opera, and Firefox to create satisfactory browsing experiences on Apple's platform. Though little is known about Firefox's plans for iOS at the current point in time, it is likely Mozilla will need to continue to work within Apple's limits.

Though Mozilla's Firefox browser for iOS will be subjected to Apple's restrictions, key Firefox features like accounts, customizable home panels, and data syncing will translate to iOS, helping Firefox users achieve a more seamless browsing experience on a range of devices.

Top Rated Comments

thedeejay Avatar
87 months ago
Love FireFox. Can't wait!
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
UnsignedKnabble Avatar
87 months ago
we don't care

Of course you don't. No one has ever accused Apple or its fanboys of being unbiased, or above hypocrisy.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JoEw Avatar
87 months ago
I'm interested in seeing what over simplified, high-contrast icon FireFox for iOS will have.
Image (http://icons.iconarchive.com/icons/igh0zt/ios7-style-metro-ui/512/MetroUI-Browser-Firefox-Alt-icon.png)
Oh, jeez, I'm actually a fan of this one.

I'd tap it :D
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bpeeps Avatar
87 months ago
Bloatware, flash crashes, and never ending Firefox updates, yay! Seriously what version of Firefox are they on now? 39?
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Paradoxally Avatar
87 months ago
Given the issues Firefox has on OS X, I'm not overly excited about this.
What issues? It runs pretty much rock solid for me (FF Developer Edition).

---

I also do not understand why people still shade Firefox. Its memory footprint has been optimized to the point where it is the most memory efficient browser you can run from the "big 3" (FF, Safari, Chrome).

It is extremely extensible and customizable, so you can make it yours. No other browser has even close to the amount of customization FF allows.

It protects your privacy and, if you don't like the default privacy settings, there's an add-on for that (ex: NoScript, Ghostery).

The sync feature works pretty damn well, second only to Google's imo. However, Chrome has been extremely bloated lately and taking up a lot of memory, hence my switch to FF.

It is not a perfect browser, but is way, way ahead of its competition. Safari doesn't exist on Windows, so I can't use it (unfortunately, I still have to use Windows at work), and I've pretty much ditched Google's alternative.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AngerDanger Avatar
87 months ago
I'm interested in seeing what over simplified, high-contrast icon FireFox for iOS will have.

Oh, jeez, I'm actually a fan of this one.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Flat 2021 MacBook Pro Mockup Feature

Unreleased Apple Macs and Apple Watches Listed in Eurasian Database Ahead of Fall Product Launches

Monday August 2, 2021 9:34 am PDT by
Apple is preparing for a slew of fall product launches according to new filings that showed up today in the Eurasian Economic Commission database. There are listings for new Mac and Apple Watch models, all of which have previously unknown model identifiers that indicate that they're upcoming devices. There are six new Apple Watch identifiers, including A2473, A2474, A2475, A2476, A2477, and...
ifixit iphone12 mini

Apple to Make Space for Larger Batteries in iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks By Adopting Slimmer Peripheral Chips

Monday August 2, 2021 2:12 am PDT by
For future iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks, Apple plans to use smaller internal components in an effort to increase the size of the device's battery, according to DigiTimes. Image Credit: iFixit Specifically, Apple plans to "significantly increase the adoption" of IPDs or integrated passive devices for the peripheral chips in its products. These news chips will be slimmer in size and allow for...
Apple Watch 7 Unreleased Feature

Apple Watch Series 7 to Focus on One Major Upgrade

Wednesday August 4, 2021 2:12 am PDT by
The upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 will focus on one important feature in an attempt to tempt existing Apple Watch users that have an older device to upgrade, according to recent reports. Apple may skip adding new health sensors to this year's Apple Watch Series 7 in favor of improving the device's battery life. The company is said to be adopting new double-sided System in Package (SiP)...
magic keyboard touch id

Apple Makes Magic Keyboard With Touch ID Available for Separate Purchase

Tuesday August 3, 2021 5:22 am PDT by
Apple has made the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID, which previously was only available with the purchase of the new 24-inch iMac, available for purchase individually for $149. Apple also retails the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and a numeric keypad for $179. A standard Magic Keyboard without Touch ID or a numeric keypad is available for $99, and a new Magic Trackpad for $129. One major...
iPhone 13 Wi Fi 6E feature update

Wi-Fi 6E Explained: What It Could Mean for iPhone 13 and Beyond

Monday August 2, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 is widely expected to come with Wi-Fi 6E capabilities, and while it may seem rather nuanced to the average consumer, with only improved speeds and being "up to date" in the realm of Wi-Fi technology, it's actually a fairly significant improvement, laying the groundwork for much of what we know the future holds. To truly understand Wi-Fi 6E, MacRumors sat down for an exclusive...
applestoredown

Apple's Online Store Temporarily Down [Update: Back Up]

Tuesday August 3, 2021 4:01 pm PDT by
Apple's online Apple Store is down at the current time, and attempting to access it to make a purchase gives the standard "Be Right Back" message. Given that it's a Tuesday night/afternoon in the United States and we're not expecting any new products this week, it's likely that this is a temporary maintenance outage that is not related to a new product release. The Apple Store app is also...
themorningshowcarrell

Apple Decided Not to Buy Reese Witherspoon's 'Hello Sunshine' Media Company

Monday August 2, 2021 2:02 pm PDT by
Reese Witherspoon's media company "Hello Sunshine" recently courted various buyers, and while Apple was one of parties interested in buying Hello Sunshine, the Cupertino company did not end up going through with the purchase. Hello Sunshine was valued at around $900 million thanks to its involvement in popular series like The Morning Show," "Big Little Lies," and "Little Fires Everywhere,"...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Apple Brings China's Luxshare Precision into iPhone 13 Supply Chain to Meet Production Targets

Wednesday August 4, 2021 12:19 am PDT by
Apple is tapping more Chinese suppliers as it seeks to meet ambitious targets for iPhone 13 production, according to a new report by Nikkei Asia. Apple is set to produce between 90 million and 95 million iPhones through January, according to a previous Nikkei report, and China's Luxshare Precision Industry has won 3% of orders away from Taiwanese rivals Foxconn and Pegatron. Luxshare will...
mac pro new graphics

Apple Introduces New High-End Graphics Options for Mac Pro

Tuesday August 3, 2021 7:34 am PDT by
Apple today began offering new high-end graphics upgrade options for both the tower and rack versions of the Mac Pro desktop computer. This comes on the same day that Apple started selling the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID on a standalone basis. As noted by CNN Underscored's Jake Krol, the Mac Pro can now be configured with new AMD Radeon Pro W6800X, W6800X Duo, or W6900X graphics when...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...