Monthly Archives: March 2009

Fennec 1.0 Beta 1

Fennec 1.0 Beta 1

I’m super happy to announce the first beta release of Fennec for the Maemo platform.

Fennec 1.0 Beta 1 includes lots of great improvements, especially around performance.  Starting with this beta, I’m able to use Fennec as the primary browser on my N810.  We’ve done heavy optimizations to our frontend code and made a number of optimizations to the platform, resulting in greatly increasing zooming speed and making panning pretty smooth.  We’ve also been able to improve startup performance by reducing a good bit of unnecessary work.  We’ve enabled TraceMonkey bringing to mobile the huge JavaScript speed improvements the JIT has brought to  Firefox 3.1 betas.  A number of performance hotspots have been identified that we’ll continue to focus on until we ship final —  in fact, we have fixed number of issues already for the next beta.

On the feature front, we’ve enabled plugins so you can now watch videos on your favorite sites, and we’ve got in our first pass at improved bookmark management and support for bookmark folders.  A lot of time was spent on infrastructure that we could use to build the rest of our app with.  You’re now able to scroll things like preferences and the new bookmarks list.  One of our main focuses for the next milestone will be on polishing the user interface — areas like the extension manager will get a face lift and we’ll start working more on some of the usability issues people have reported.

Madhava Enros, our lead user interface designer for Fennec, has put together a great video of Beta 1 that not only shows off many of the things we’ve done but also does a great job of explaining many of the choices we’ve made.

Add-ons are starting to pop up and are already showing some of the great possibilities that Fennec provides.

The Weave guys have been working hard and have an extension for Fennec now that allows you to sync data from your desktop to Fennec.  Having your desktop’s tabs, bookmarks, and awesome-bar contents on your mobile device really make a huge difference.

Mozilla Weave

Felipe Gomes’ gesture addon is another great example of what we’re capable of.  You can see a video of the awesome extension he’s done below: