Mozilla - Firefox Symbian Mobile Browser - Updated 28/01/2009 Out Next Week
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  1. #1
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    Post Mozilla - Firefox Symbian Mobile Browser - Updated 28/01/2009 Out Next Week

    Just been reading an article about this, ok, its an old article, but some people may not of read it.

    Turns out, it will be out next year for Symbian devices, and that they are prioritizing Windows Mobile first due to the similarities with its current platform.

    Windows Mobile and Linux phones are likely initial candidates for the browser in part because those operating systems share code with their corresponding operating systems on computers, making it easier to build the mobile version of the browser, said Doug Turner, a Mozilla engineer working on the mobile project.

    Symbian, however, is totally different from any of the desktop operating systems and so would require more work, he said. "But because Symbian has such a wide market, it may make sense to do that," he said. Symbian, which runs on Nokia's phones, has the bulk of smartphone market share, even though its presence in the U.S. is small.

    On Tuesday, Mozilla Vice President of Engineering Mike Schroepfer announced on his blog that the company had decided to develop a new mobile version of Firefox. He said Mozilla hadn't determined which phones the browser would work on. Judging from the comments left after the post, a Symbian version of the browser is in big demand.

    Regardless of the way that Mozilla prioritizes Firefox mobile compatibility, the beauty of Firefox is that it's open, Turner said. "It's not like Mozilla needs to bless someone to build something," he said. Developers will be free to build Firefox mobile for Symbian, or any other mobile operating system, if Mozilla doesn't. That's happened in the desktop environment, where developers have built Firefox browsers for very old operating systems, he said.

    The browser will be based on Mozilla2, the new Mozilla platform expected to come out in 2009. By then, a number of other mobile browsers including Internet Explorer, Opera, and Safari will have been available for years.

    Mozilla isn't worried about the competition, though. Internet Explorer once had nearly all of the market share in the PC, Turner noted. "So it's not like we haven't been in this fight before," he said.

    Plus, the smart phone market is still relatively small, so Mozilla actually won't be late to market, said Chris Hazelton, an analyst with IDC. In 2006, smartphones made up about 8 percent of the market, he said.

    In addition, there's no dominant browser yet in the smart phone market, he said. And because mobile browsers could use some improvements, there's opportunity for a new entrant. The iPhone, which runs Apple's Safari browser, has shown some innovation in the way that users can navigate Web pages by sweeping their finger across the screen to drag the page and tapping to zoom. That capability requires close integration between software and hardware, but if Mozilla could work closely with a device manufacturer, it might be able to produce features like that, he said.

    Mozilla also has a leg up because of its strong market share in desktops, Hazelton said. Firefox is a recognized brand and users may want to mirror their PC experience on their smartphones, he said.

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  4. #2
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    Should be good when it comes out. The article reads as though Mozilla is very confident.
    Thanks GSi-R

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    Is Safari available for Symbian then?

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    As GSI said this is relatively old NEWS. There have been no actual evidence of this project undergoing development.

    Bubba, there are no plans whatsoever to bring Safari into the mobile platform.

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    Ok, this is still old news, but shows a development.

    Firefox Mobile is planned to be available later this year.!!



    Last October, Mozilla announced that they were working on a mobile version of the Firefox browser. As it turns out, they were working on two versions: one designed for touchscreen devices like the iPhone and another for traditional phones. Now Mozilla has finally given us a glimpse of their designs by posting the plans, mockups, and details of these two upcoming mobile browsers on the Mozilla wiki.

    Non-Touchscreen Firefox Mobile

    The non-touchscreen browser introduces a virtual cursor that is controlled with the keyboard navigational keys. Using short presses (clicks) on the directional pad's left key will quickly navigate through clickable elements. Longer presses on the left key will begin smooth scrolling. When scrolling, after a set amount of time the page will gradually zoom out to give you a view of the entire layout which will allow for faster scrolling. When you stop pressing the directional pad button, the browser will gradually zoom back in on the element that the cursor is positioned over.

    The right key of the directional pad will bring up a menu that provides access to navigation functionality, including items like the Address Bar, Refresh, Back, History, Bookmarks, Tabs, Bookmark This, and Quit.



    Weave Integration to Come?

    Although not detailed in these specifications, many sites are speculating that these new mobile browsers will provide bookmark syncing through Weave, Mozilla's new project for data and metadata portability. This is likely since mobile syncing was one of the listed "Use Cases" in the Mozilla Labs forum on the project. With Weave, though, bookmark syncing could really be just the beginning. Weave could, in theory, also sync up browser settings like sessions and passwords from desktop to mobile to laptop and beyond.

    Another big possibility is the development of extensions designed just for Mobile Firefox. This would be a break-out feature that could make Mobile Firefox unique in this space. However, no plans for this type of development have been announced yet.

    The Mobile Firefox browser should arrive sometime in late 2008
    .
    ...But Opera Mini Already Does That

    What's interesting about the Mobile Firefox announcement and surrounding hubbub is that Opera Mini today offers nearly the same features that Mozilla is still developing.

    Most notably, Opera Mini 4 can already sync your mobile phone bookmarks with the bookmarks on your computer by using something called Opera Link. Although not as seamless as the possible Weave setup (perhaps), syncing bookmarks with Opera is fairly simple.

    You click "Synchronize Opera" on the Start Page and then sign in with your Opera Account. Opera Mini will continue to synchronize your data until you log out.



    Why Firefox Might Win

    Although Opera Mini is a great mobile browser with tons of features, back on the desktop, Firefox has more users. So, when it comes time to choose a mobile browser, the one that syncs with your desktop browser of choice is likely to win out. Plus, if add-ons are developed for Mobile Firefox, it has the possibility of becoming a killer mobile app.

    Source

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    Nokia Guru Leong's Avatar
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    I'm getting tired of waiting........ Why are they taking so long... Not even an Alpha or Beta after almost more than 1 year,
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    I know what you mean, its frustrating, but I would rather wait, and get a perfectly usable browser, than a beta or early release full of bugs.

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  11. #8
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    They haven't even started to build yet. Because they all build on Linux and Unix there are no build software or compilers for Symbian on that operating system. Therefore they are having to basicly build blind then compile and test and hope, this means that it is going to be a hard trek for them unless someone wants to make them some software.

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    Well, building itself is not a problem especially if they want to have WM version too. The reason I think is rather that Gecko they want to use is not final (it is now 2.0 prerelease) but I see that they are working on it (the last xulrunner is three days old). With such rendering engine like Gecko it is always easier to debug it under one particular platform and only after it is really stable.
    Of course they have prereleas builds of 1.9/2.0 for Windows too but remember that ARM is completely different architecture than x86 and at some point it may have big impact on decision what is stable and what is not. So the goal right now s to finish engine itself and after that make working browser (which can take place any week after engine is done and marked as stable release)

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    Possibly bad news. I don't know if anybody here read this: Mobile/Build - MozillaWiki but it (Fennec will use xulrunner) doesn't seem good. Mobile/Build/Symbian - MozillaWiki confirms that currently there are only initial efforts and Fennec's development so far says that in a few months we can expect it but not for Symbian (Symbian edition can be delayed). Of course this is not certain but we must remember it.

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    Nokia Guru Leong's Avatar
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    Thats a looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo oooooooooooooooooong way from now.
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    Anyone tried the SKYFIRE browser yet?

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    Update..

    Today we (Mozilla) are focusing our efforts in mobile on Linux and Windows Mobile devices. In Q3 2008 Symbian had 49.8% of the total smartphone sales (and 57% in Q2) according to Gartner compared to 11.1% for Windows Mobile and 7.2% for Linux. There are a few other platforms: iPhone, RIM and Android that have or are gaining market share, where we for technical or licensing reasons can’t be deployed. So in order for Mozilla to be relevant in the smartphone space we need to have a presence on the Symbian platform. We have worked with Symbian to understand and scope the size of the project and Symbian are supporting this with engineers to start working on this project so far. At the same time, several Symbian houses are interested in contributing work.

    We have now kicked off a project in an incubator repository to get the development kick-started and are inviting everybody who is interested in seeing Fennec (Mobile Firefox) on Symbian to get involved. Harry Li already started some of this work, where he has ported NSPR to Symbian.

    The current high-level plan (that we will revise as we move forward) is split into 5 phases:

    1. Fennec compiling and linking
    Planned completion date: end of January
    2. Basic/limited browsing possible
    Planned completion date: end of February
    3. Full browsing
    Planned completion date: end of April
    4. Fennec ready for initial testing
    Planned completion date: TBD
    5. Bug fixing and productisation of Fennec
    Planned completion date: TBD

    Source

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  21. #17
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    Mobile Firefox Out Next Week


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    Oh I am so looking forward to this!

  23. #19
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    Me too

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  24. #20
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    Update..........

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  25. #21
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    but it says that this will only be available on win.mobile devices,what's up with that?

  26. #22
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    Yeah I read that shortly after. Sucks.

  27. #23
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    ive got this, i think, well i have a web browser branded as firefox and called firefox on my 8gb. i havent really used it though
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  28. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by tom_moran View Post
    ive got this, i think, well i have a web browser branded as firefox and called firefox on my 8gb. i havent really used it though
    What the fudge!?

  29. #25
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    yes well im not sure its the real deal though. i got it from mosh but it doesnt appear to be there anymore. ill have a look in my apps folder at work to see if i still have the installer
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  30. #26
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    No way its legit. I'd place my left bollock on it.

  31. #27
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    to be fair i was dissappointed in it, i had expected better from mozilla which is why i didnt use it.
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  32. #28
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    found it: Nokia MOSH: Firefox mobile browser

    but it turns out its a browser called teashark
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  34. #29
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    mozilla is american so why would they prioritize for an OS thats non existant in the US? just makes sense.

  35. #30
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    So this is mostly hot air then? Bugger.

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