Feeds

Fennec squeezes into Android users' pockets

Have yourself a foxy weekend

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Mozilla has pushed out another alpha version of Firefox for mobile phones, Fennec, and it's inviting Android, and N900, users to have a shot with the little fox.

Fennec is the working title for the mobile version of Firefox, incorporating the irritatingly-named "Awesome Bar" and synchronising in real time with its bigger brother. Previous alpha releases of Fennec have only been available for Nokia's N900 internet tablet, with one "pre-alpha" release being built for Android. But now Android users get a proper "alpha" and are invited to download to see what they think.

The more-wary user might like to take a look at the video instead, which shows how Fennec recreates the Firefox experience in miniature - using sideways scrolling to provide access to tools and demonstrating how Fennec manages the add-ons which have proved so popular for Firefox.

But synchronisation is one of the more interesting features. Android users who've made the jump to Froyo will have Crome2phone already showing them how useful the continuity of browsing can be. But for everyone else the task of synchronising history, tabs, bookmarks, passwords, and form defaults is complicated at best, and one of the things that Fennec is really good at.

The new release includes separation of rendering and interface into distinct tasks, making it more responsive to the user. The concept of add-ons is supported, with Fennec having a special menu for adding and managing the additions which have proved so popular on the desktop.

The usual caveats apply - this isn't even a beta release, and can't be expected to be very stable. The Known Issues list suggests that scrolling speed could do with improving, and that some add-ons developed for earlier version of Fennec won't work, but these seem like minor issues for a first version.

We've not had a proper chance to see how stable Firefox is on a mobile phone, but early indications show a surprisingly usable little web browser, though as yet little advantage over the one built in. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Same old iPad? NO. The new 'soft SIMs' are BIG NEWS
AppleSIM 'ware to allow quick switch of carriers
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Brits: Google, can you scrape 60k pages from web, pleeease
Hey, c'mon Choc Factory, it's our 'right to be forgotten'
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.