Mozilla, the company behind the popular Firefox browser for desktop PCs, has been hard at work with the development of a mobile flavor of its browser, called Fennec, and has just announced some changes with the upcoming solution.
In an attempt to bring the mobile browser closer to the desktop flavor of Firefox, the company announced that Firefox for mobile (Fennec) will get new version numbering in the near future, and that “Firefox 2.0b1 for Android & Maemo” is becoming “Firefox 4.0b1 for Android & Maemo.”
Basically, this means that the final flavor of the solution would come with the same numbering. We should expect it to be called “Firefox 4 for Android and Nokia N900.”
“We are aligning mobile Firefox and desktop Firefox since the web rendering engines used in both browsers are the same. Treating them as the same version seemed like the right thing to do,” a recent post on Mark Finkle’s Weblog reads.
However, it seems that the mobile browser is nearing the desktop solution in capabilities and under the hood elements too.
Firefox for desktops makes use of a XUL <browser> to display web content, and the same would be present with the mobile application, although the original Fennec came with a set of <canvas> tiles for rendering web content.
According to Mark, they “removed the <canvas> tiles and switched back to use only <browser> elements to render web content. The front-end code is much cleaner and more simple. In addition, it’s much faster than the previous code so panning and zooming are even better than before.”
He also notes that all add-ons that are compatible with Fennec 2.0b1pre will be bumped to support Fennec 4.0b1pre.
Those interested in downloading the application should find it available on Softpedia too, via this link.
However, newer flavors are available straight from Mozilla, though they are nightly builds, meaning that they contain a lot of bugs.
In case there are some interested in learning more on Firefox for mobile, they should head over to the company's site here.