Windows 7, Chrome, Firefox Most Popular, Says Security Survey
Independent lab tests of antivirus products are essential to making an informed selection. We wouldn't want to just rely on each vendor to tout the merit of their own products; they'd all be five-star winners. But it's also important that the labs pay attention to the people who rely on these tests. AV-Comparatives surveys users every year to see what kinds of tests they consider most important, check on their OS and browser preferences, and gather other useful information about the public's understanding of computer security issues.
This survey specifically excluded respondents who work in the computer security industry, focusing instead on ordinary users around the world with enough interest in security that they visited the AV-Comparatives website. Researchers also used statistical filtering to detect invalid responses or attempts to deliberately skew the results.
Mozilla Has No Plans for Firefox iOS App
Apple fans shouldn't hold their breath for a dedicated iOS Firefox browser, according to Mozilla's Jay Sullivan.
During a mobile browser wars panel at SXSW, Mozilla's vice president of product said that until Cupertino adjusts its attitude toward third-party browsers, Firefox will avoid Apple's iOS.
"Due to constraints with the environment and distribution, we cannot provide users the full Firefox experience on iOS at this time," Sullivan said in an emailed statement to PCMag. "We will continue experimenting with new technologies that move the Web forward and keep the user in control."
Apple's rules forbid browsers that don't use its version of WebKit, and prevent users from setting any non-Safari app as their default browser. Apple's Safari currently has more than 55 percent of the mobile/tablet browser share, according to Net Applications. Mozilla holds 0.01 percent.
First Firefox OS Phones Launching in 9 Countries, U.S. in 2014
BARCELONA - It's happening! Mozilla and a slew of mobile operators announced tonight at Mobile World Congress that the first Firefox OS phones will launch this year in nine countries, with others to follow. The U.S. will probably come in 2014, Mozilla CEO Gary Kovacs said.
Rather, the first Firefox OS phones, built by Alcatel, LG, and ZTE, will appear in Brazil, Colombia, Hungary, Mexico, Poland, Serbia, Spain and Venezuela, Mozilla said. Phones from Huawei will follow later, as will other country rollouts.
Mozilla showed off two phones at the event: the Alcatel One Touch Fire and the ZTE Fire. All the demos were done on the ZTE model, though, and even that wasn't entirely functional. Still, though, we will have an in-depth, eyes-on preview of Firefox OS on the ZTE Fire shortly.
Deutsche Telekom said the Alcatel One Touch Fire will go on sale in Poland this summer, with more Eastern European countries following in 2013. Telefonica added that it plans to launch in all of its markets by 2014.
In the U.S., Sprint has expressed support, but didn't come to the press conference or announce a device.
"Most of [Firefox OS's] growth is going to come from the emerging world," Kovacs said. "That's today where the Firefox OS devices will largely be aimed. As follow-on versions come, we'll ascend to the rest of the world and to different levels of consumer," he said.
Mozilla Unveils Firefox OS Developer Phones
Mozilla today unveiled two new developer preview phones that feature the browser maker's Firefox OS.
The phones - dubbed Keon and Peak - are being developed via Spanish phone maker GeeksPhonein partnership with Telefonica.
"This week we are announcing our new Firefox OS developer preview phones because we believe that developers will help bring the power of the web to mobile," Mozilla said in a blog post.
The Keon (above) is described as "light and versatile but also powerful." It features a 3.5-inch touch screen, 3-megapixel camera, and 4GB of storage, as well as MicroSD, MicroUSB, Wi-Fi, GPS, and more. It runs a 1-GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S1 and a 1580mAh battery.
Firefox 18 Beta Promises Speed Boost, Retina Support
Mozilla today released a beta version of Firefox 18 that promises speed improvements, support for Retina display screens, and more.
The updated browser now supports Apple's Retina display for Mac users "to make Firefox even sharper when watching movies, playing games and browsing the Web," Mozilla said in a blog post.
Firefox 18 Beta will also allow users to disable insecure content on encrypted websites "to maintain the privacy of your communication with the website," Mozilla said. With Firefox 14, released in July, Mozilla started automatically encrypting searches conducted via Google's search engine in the browser's location bar, search box, or the right-click menu.
For those with touch-supported devices, Firefox 18 beta joins Internet Explorer 10 in adding support for W3C touch events. That means that websites that respond to touch, tracking your movements as you glide your finger across the screen, for example, will work in Firefox 18.
Mozilla Releases Test Version of Firefox OS
Mozilla this week released an early desktop version of Firefox OS that will let developers experience the mobile OS before comes to phones.
The builds are available for Mac, Windows, and Linux.
"We've been culturally challenged to build up a interested community of testers, but limited to our distribution of builds due to legal contracts," Mozilla's Tony Chung wrote in a blog post. "However, the release engineering team was able to get Daily desktop builds created and published online for anyone to play with."
Setup instructions are available on the Gaia/Hacking site. You'll need a Gaia profile to launch the build; without one you might encounter a black screen; more details are in Chung's blog post.
"If you're a web developer, you can use these builds to create and test your webApp against," Chung wrote. "If you're looking to help do some testing, these desktop builds will also give you an immediate opportunity to play with and help us write testplans and file bugs. We encourage anyone interested to give the desktop builds a spin."
Earlier this month, Mozilla announced that its standalone, mobile operating system - codenamed Boot to Gecko - will be known as Firefox OS, with TCL Communication Technology and ZTE as its first manufacturing partners.
The first Firefox OS-powered devices will run a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and are expected to launch in Brazil in early 2013 via Telefónica's Vivo service, Mozilla said. Operators like Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia, and Telenor have also committed to offering Firefox OS devices.
Firefox OS Smartphones Coming in 2013
Mozilla today announced that its standalone, mobile operating system will be known as Firefox OS, with TCL Communication Technology and ZTE as its first manufacturing partners.
The first Firefox OS-powered devices will run a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and are expected to launch in Brazil in early 2013 via Telefónica's Vivo service, Mozilla said.
Operators like Deutsche Telekom, Etisalat, Smart, Sprint, Telecom Italia, and Telenor have also committed to offering Firefox OS devices.
"Firefox Mobile OS can help us drive an HTML 5-based platform for creating lower cost smartphone options for prepaid, postpaid and wholesale customers," Fared Adib, product chief at Sprint, said in a statement.
Firefox OS comes out of Mozilla's Boot to Gecko project, which was first announced in July 2011. As Johnathan Nightingale, senior director of Firefox engineering, told PCMag at this year's Mobile World Congress (MWC), Firefox OS is intended to do away with the "walled garden" approach of today's modern mobile operating systems, like Apple's iOS and Google's Android.
Boot to Gecko, Mozilla said today, "unlocks many of the current limitations of web development on mobile, allowing HTML5 applications to access the underlying capabilities of a phone, previously only available to native applications."
Firefox 13 Finally Adds New Tab Page
When you open a new tab in Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, or Opera, you'll see helpful links to recent, favorite, and most visited webpages. For several years now, Firefox has been the only browser that shows nothing but a blank white page when you open a new tab—until today.
Announced today on the Mozilla blog, Firefox 13 is a lucky one for those who've been yearning for some new tab assistance. And it's not just the new tab page that's been redesigned; Firefox users also get a new default homepage with the new release.
Firefox's updated new tab page, as in a lot of other things, mimics Google Chrome most closely. As in Chrome and Opera, Firefox's new tab page shows thumbnails of your most recently and frequently visited sites. And as in the other browsers, you can customize what's on these thumbnails, and they shrink and enlarge as you resize the browser window. You can also remove sites and pin and unpin them to the new tab page. But you can't specify which sites to include: They're chosen by frequency of your visits.
But where Google's browser only offers your most visited sites, Web apps, and recently closed tabs, the large icons on Firefox's new homepage give access to bookmarks, history, settings, add-ons, downloads, and sync preferences with shortcuts.
Mozilla Releases Firefox 12 With Silent Updates
Mozilla on Tuesday released Firefox 12, which incorporates silent updates, among other enhancements.
The browser maker initially promised silent updates - or updates that occur in the background - with Firefox 13, but the feature has made its way into today's release.
"Firefox simplifies the update process for Windows users by removing the user account control dialog (UAC) pop-up while maintaining the security of your system," Mozilla said in a blog post. "Once a user gives explicit permission to Firefox on their first installation, they will not be prompted again for subsequent releases."
Last year, Mozilla switched to a Chrome-esque rapid release cycle, which means that it releases new browser versions at a faster clip. In the past, it might have been more than a year between browser versions, but this year alone, Mozilla has already released Firefox 10, 11, and 12. With the silent updates incorporated into Firefox 12, users won't be interupted by multiple prompts to update to the latest version of their browser.
Mozilla Promises Silent Updates With Firefox 13
One day after the release of Firefox 11, Mozilla on Wednesday provided an update on its progress and gave fans of its browser a peek at what's to come in 2012.
That includes silent updates with the release of Firefox 13, the company revealed.
Mozilla touted the 2011 addition of "do not track" technology, the release of Firefox for Android, and the switch to a rapid release cycle, among other things.
"In 2011, we made 10,881 enhancements/changes to Firefox, together with 83 new features and 135 new APIs," Robert Nyman, a technical evangelist for Mozilla, wrote in a blog post.
If Mozilla had its way, version numbers would be a thing of the past, but they remain because "new versions have had cases of non-backward compatible APIs, and the version number have been there to signal that it is not a minor release or maintenance update," Nyman wrote.