Will Add-ons be the Secret Sauce of Success for Mobile Firefox?


Add-ons in Firefox Mobile on Nokia's N900

The release of Firefox Mobile should be under the Christmas tree very soon, but some are already looking at the add-ons that will work with the browser. Liz Gannes at GigaOm runs through a bunch of the early extensions that can be installed on the mobile browser that behaves like a desktop client. I didn’t realize that there’s already 42 extensions available, just waiting for the final release of Firefox Mobile.

Of course, the first device to see the production version of Firefox Mobile is the Nokia N900, which I currently have under evaluation. I’ve installed the most recent beta build of Mozilla’s browser, but I’m withholding judgment until I see the final release. As such, I haven’t installed any add-ons just yet, although I’m tempted to install Mozilla’s Weave Sync — that extension synchronizes bookmarks between the full version Firefox and Firefox Mobile.

After releasing the browser for Nokia’s N900, Windows Mobile (s msft) will see it and then Google’s Android platform after that. With each platform already offering or supporting reasonably good mobile browsers — Opera Mobile and Android’s native browser come to mind — Mozilla is banking on desktop features like extensions to win over mobile fans. Extensions have helped make Firefox a success on full computers and it’s reasonable to assume that it will help strengthen their position in the mobile space as well.

Are you patiently waiting for Mobile Firefox or are you content with your current mobile browser?



Sorry, but the browser on the Android platform that Firefox will compete against currently is Dolphin, not the built-in one.


Looks like Weave isn’t yet compatible with the latest Beta5 release of Firefox Mobile. I tried to install the plugin yesterday, but it looks like it only works up through beta3. Will have to wait for that. So far Firefox Mobile on the N900 looks very good, although I miss the “corkscrew” zooming of the builtin MicroB browser included on the N900. They need to come up with better zooming options than just double-tap.


Firefox with add-ons all the way. Biggest win for me will be Weave and solid ad blocking.

Obviously it is not in Google’s interest to deal with ad blocking.

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