Mozilla Shows Metro Version of Firefox for Windows 8

Mozilla's Brian Bondy has provided an update on Firefox for Windows 8 Metro, throwing up a few screenshots in the process. Based on his report, it doesn't seem that the browser will make its 2Q12 release, as there are still some unresolved design questions and "a ton of platform integration work to do."

Still, the team has a working browser up and running in Microsoft's blocky OS. The end user can navigate the web, create tabs, bookmark pages, build history, retain cache, adjust preferences, and more. It also looks and feels like the Android browser.

"Our prototype in its current form is based on the Fennec XUL code," Bondy writes. "We used to use Fennec XUL on Android, but changed to a Native UI on Android for startup performance reasons. We haven't seen the same types of startup performance problems we've had on Android yet, even on VMs."

According to the images, the browser's UI is more Android-like than Metro because Metro specific UI guidelines and Mozilla UX work feedback has not begun, but hopefully that should be changing soon. Right now the team is writing up a proposal on how they should proceed with the Metro work which will be posted here.

"If we are able to keep using Fennec XUL we'll be ahead of schedule, but I anticipate some serious discussions once that is posted," he reports. "Since our prototype is based on Fennec we have a multi-process capable browser for free. Currently there is only one content process, but I believe the longer term plans are to increase that."

The Alpha and Beta version of Firefox for Windows 8 Metro are now listed as "2H," or rather the second half of 2012. The Alpha will prove the installation path and basic browsing features. The Beta will be feature complete for a 1.0-capability product, the roadmap states.

  • el33t
    Toms, it'd have been much more convenient if those screenshots were attached in the article..
  • cnox
    You know, the last 'boxy' ui i worked with was Lotus Notes. Oh my god, that was the worst experience I've ever had...EVER. EVER EVER. I hope I never go back, but it looks like the metro UI may be just that...15 years later.

    The optimist in me will say that there will be a transition from what the first release delivers and what the long term Ui design will be, but it's going to be a painful transition methinks. But we'll all take it because there's nothing better for gaming out there...
  • Marco925
    Mozilla! Don't give into pressure! Buck the trend!
  • eddieroolz
    Time for Google to exploit this delay with a Metro version of Chrome?
  • blazorthon
    Ehh, at least Mozilla is trying to keep with the times. I still don't like Metro, but it would be wrong of Mozilla to ignore a UI that a lot of people will be using in the future.
  • seels
    Apple > Microsoft yet again. Microsoft is full of mistakes and too many junky OS' to count.
  • I'm more than worried by these succeeding Windows version, XP, the crappy Vista, 7, now a really worrysome 8, and more importantly all the significant user problems and painful transitions that come with them. I'm still using XP with delight.

    May be application companies have their word to say, by not necessarily following what MicroSoft dictates.
  • You mean like all the pre-OSX versions especially 9.0 and 9.1?
  • franky4ro
    is it me or win 8 will be the next milennium and vista :))
  • wiyosaya
    franky4rois it me or win 8 will be the next milennium and vista )I don't think you are the only one who thinks this.