Firefox provides status update on Windows 8 Metro browser

Mozilla announced its intentions to develop a version of Firefox made specifically to run on Microsoft's Metro interface for Windows 8 some time ago. Today, Firefox programmer Brian Bondy updated his blog with a new development update on Firefox for Windows 8 Metro. Bondy says that the team has made "steady progress" since his last development update three weeks ago.

Bondy says that Firefox for Windows 8 Metro now supports using the operating system's "soft" keyboard, meaning Firefox can now be used on Windows 8-based tablet devices with their touch screen keyboards. It also now supports Windows 8's secondary tiles feature. Bondy states:

Like Internet Explorer 10, you can pin any number of sites to your start screen. When you click on the secondary tile, it will load the pinned site in Metro whether or not Firefox is already open.

The team is also working to support Windows 8's many touch events and gestures, along with W3C DOM touch events.

Bondy also says that the coming week will have him heading to Toronto for a Firefox work week. He states:

One of the hacking goals during this week is to get some significant initial work done on the UI for Firefox on Metro. This work will be based on the UX work from Stephen Horlander and Yuan Wang. In the initial work we'll have the tab bar and address bar on the top and site specific options such as pin site on an app bar accessible from the bottom edge.

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20 Comments

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Dot Matrix said,
If Mozilla can't get Firefox's **** together on the desktop, why do they think they have a shot with Metro?

Its a nice opportunity for them as they don't have Firefox on iOS and Metro seems to have nice future for tablets if not desktops. And Firefox on desktop with Firefox 9+ is quite a lot faster and memory efficient than your misconception. Try Firefox 12 yourself

bogas04 said,

Its a nice opportunity for them as they don't have Firefox on iOS and Metro seems to have nice future for tablets if not desktops. And Firefox on desktop with Firefox 9+ is quite a lot faster and memory efficient than your misconception. Try Firefox 12 yourself

+1 Firefox is a joy to use again.

M_Lyons10 said,

+1 Firefox is a joy to use again.

I opened up over 40 tabs on Firefox, the performance is nice!

Don't just me, I was on Tumblr.

gzAsher said,
I'm more excited about chrome metro.

As am I. I wish there was RockMelt Metro, though... (Or maybe Skyfire Metro, which would theoretically allow for Flash just like it does on iOS!)

DJ Dark said,
Nope. Just like IE it wont ba able to.

damn.
Is there a technical reason for this then (in terms of what MS allow devs to do with metro apps)?
Or is it some kind of stance against Flash and web plug ins?
Either way it is really annoying, because an awful lot of websites still use flash, silverlight and other plugins.

DJ Dark said,
Nope. Just like IE it wont ba able to.

Why not? Metro IE doesn't support plugins/extensions by design. Firefox will be using its own rendering engine, and unless the approval process stops devs from providing a plugin system, they (devs working on Firefox) can easily introduce support for Flash.

WelshBluebird said,

damn.
Is there a technical reason for this then (in terms of what MS allow devs to do with metro apps)?
Or is it some kind of stance against Flash and web plug ins?
Either way it is really annoying, because an awful lot of websites still use flash, silverlight and other plugins.


It "won't be able" to coz MS won't allow , all metro browsers are supposed to use HTML5 etc technologies without plugins , one reason I see behind it is to make Win tablets secure , generally virus etc make their way from Browser plugins , or it's easy to hack thru plugins (java). You might say tablets would be able to run Desktop app too , well ARM tablets can only install Office as only program for desktop mode.
So if you are using metro on desktop , forget about metro browsers they are not really meant for heavy usage , maybe just to fill a login form for a metro app you downloaded.

georgevella said,

Why not? Metro IE doesn't support plugins/extensions by design. Firefox will be using its own rendering engine, and unless the approval process stops devs from providing a plugin system, they (devs working on Firefox) can easily introduce support for Flash.

Firefox will have its elementary addons for metro , but not as many as the ones for desktop , plugins can't be supported as per MS

georgevella said,

Why not? Metro IE doesn't support plugins/extensions by design. Firefox will be using its own rendering engine, and unless the approval process stops devs from providing a plugin system, they (devs working on Firefox) can easily introduce support for Flash.

Microsoft does not want plugins that run arbitrary bits of code like Silverlight and Flash because holes in them can break the app sandbox and cause havoc on the system.

bogas04 said,

It "won't be able" to coz MS won't allow , all metro browsers are supposed to use HTML5 etc technologies without plugins , one reason I see behind it is to make Win tablets secure , generally virus etc make their way from Browser plugins , or it's easy to hack thru plugins (java). You might say tablets would be able to run Desktop app too , well ARM tablets can only install Office as only program for desktop mode.
So if you are using metro on desktop , forget about metro browsers they are not really meant for heavy usage , maybe just to fill a login form for a metro app you downloaded.

Metro Style Apps aren't restricted to using only web languages (HTML5,CSS,JS,etc). They can use any language they want.

DJ Dark said,
Nope. Just like IE it wont ba able to.

Microsoft never said other browsers couldn't use flash, they just said IE10 wouldm't run plug ins.

statm1 said,

Metro Style Apps aren't restricted to using only web languages (HTML5,CSS,JS,etc). They can use any language they want.

I never said the "browser" would be "written" in HTML5/CSS etc , i said they are supposed to "use" HTML5/CSS etc rather than plugins...

I am rather interested to see how they make this look, the original mock ups looked VERY similar to what they have done for the tablet version on Android.

littleneutrino said,
I am rather interested to see how they make this look, the original mock ups looked VERY similar to what they have done for the tablet version on Android.

Stephen hasn't yet posted any mockups , the prior was result of porting Firefox for tablets to PC.

littleneutrino said,
I am rather interested to see how they make this look, the original mock ups looked VERY similar to what they have done for the tablet version on Android.

Because that's all that was. They moved their Android browser to Windows essentially to give them something to work with. They haven't started UI work yet that we've seen.