WebRTC World Feature Article

November 27, 2012

Mozilla Releases Beta Version of Firefox for Retina Displays


The Firefox Web browser is easily one of the biggest in the field, joining some major names and even taking some market share away from the biggest of them. But the newest version, Firefox 18, recently went beta and brought several new key features along with it – specifically, support for the Retina Display system that Apple commonly uses, as well as preliminary support for WebRTC.

The newest Firefox beta comes just three months after Google made its own move to offer Retina support for its Chrome browser in the form of Chrome for Mac, and makes it part of a very short list of applications from third parties to offer support for the Retina system.

But that's not all the new version of Firefox is looking to offer, with improvements made to the JavaScript JIT compiler known as IonMonkey that look to speed up code handling with ARM machines, as well as both 32- and 64-bit machines.

There's also a built-in PDF viewer, as well as preliminary support for WebRTC, the real-time communications project with roots in HTML5 and Java API.

Those interested in getting hands-on with the new version of Firefox and getting the most out of its Retina support will need to be running a Retina MacBook Pro with at least OS X 10.7.

Mozilla's browser has come a long way from its early days, and despite the fact that it's free to use, has generated plenty of extra revenue for Mozilla. But it's also brought one of the first major alternatives to the Internet Explorer line, and it could even be said that it was largely responsible for the growing number of third-party browsers we see today.

Adding that extra Retina functionality will likely help to draw in users from the Mac community – a community that should offer plenty of opportunity for third-party browsers, especially those with Retina support.

The benefits don't stop there; the combination of Retina display technology and both JavaScript and WebRTC alike should work well together, as a powerful display technology gets backed up by extremely useful services.

Firefox's continued additions to the browser community offer not only enhanced service for users, they offer enhanced choice for the market, helping every other browser improve in performance and overall quality. What Mozilla will bring out next is quite unclear, but if their previous versions are any indication, we should be looking for some terrific new operations to come.

Are you interested in learning more about WebRTC Communications? Then be sure to attend WebRTC Conference and Expo in San Francisco, Calif. from November 27-29. Stay in touch with everything happening at WebRTC Expo: Follow us on Twitter.




Edited by Braden Becker




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