New Firefox 4 Beta for Android Promises Huge Speed Improvements


The good folks at Mozilla just chimed in to inform us of a new beta release (4) of Firefox 4 for Android Beta. They’ve been hammering away at the app ever since Google released the Android NDK, and while it’s been more of a diamond in the rough, you have to expect that they’ll get it up to speed soon enough.

They’re touting speed improvements across the board: not only have they promised increased application performance (particularly in the neighborhoods of panning and zooming), but they’re claiming javascript performance is even faster than the stock Android browser – and we know Android 2.2’s browser to be pretty damn fast.

  • Recent tests on JavaScript benchmarks show Firefox 4 Beta is faster than the stock Android browser
  • Roughly three times faster on Kraken
  • Twice as fast on SunSpider

Android 2.2’s browser uses the V8 engine, and Firefox says performance is still slightly better than it with the same engine. With this release, they’re also touting that nearly 200 plugins have been created for their mobile browsers. That’s quite impressive for phones, but you had to expect they wanted to make a big push for a desktop-like experience with the advent of Android tablets.

Check out more of their announcement and release notes here, and look for Firefox in the Android market to try it out for yourself.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. No Facebook and other social media forced on us please. I will download it.

  2. then there will be a firepanda !! YES !! pure awesomeness!! oh .. i like panda

  3. I wasn’t crazy about Dolphin until Mini was released (it’s excellent, btw). But I’m *very* excited about Firefox’s add-ons, and will almost certainly switch when the time comes.

  4. Still no flash though,

  5. Juno, you like panda in your pants?

  6. Can’t seem to find it in the market. Very excited though

  7. Not in the Market.

  8. This sucks on my rooted overclocked nook color. It used to be pretty fast, now the pages are unreadable and it renders the pages about half as fast as it used to. Need to find the old beta. Yuck.

  9. Psh, this thing would need to be a lot more faster than my Dolphin Mini for me to even consider changing. I really just want a Google Chrome browser I can sync with my home Google Chrome. Still though Dolphin altogether has left me impressed since before I even owned an Android, and it still hasn’t ceased.

  10. They don’t even support the original Droid!!!! Not even worth supporting them if they can’t support a very popular phone…

  11. “Adobe Flash and other plugins are not supported. Currently, enabling the Flash plugin results in a compromised user experience across Firefox for mobile.” Did Apple merge with Mozilla?

  12. Firefox 4 beta 3 was stable and usable. Beta 4 seems slow and unstable in comparison.

  13. not seeing it in the market. 2.2 only?

    still using Dolphin Mini. not as fast as Opera Mini, but its a lot more solid and takes up less space.

  14. Firefox is garbage on computers now, so I’m not surprised that its still gabage on android. Ill stick with dolphin mini, thanks.

  15. Not worth my time without flash. Get a clue firefox!

  16. Tried on MyTouch 4g. Seemed slower than native browser, performance when rescaling pages was erratic and looked like Safari on my iPod Touch, choice of plugins very limited so far. Needs work.

  17. Download Miren, stupid name, but by far the best mobile browser out there, loaded with great features, but it’s some amazing tweaks and design decisions that really raise the bar…

  18. Mozilla, I love you on the desktop but until your mobile browser can support Flash and exceed Dolphin HD in features, speed and rendering accuracy, I won’t be downloading it. In fact, I won’t even look for it in the Market Place or anywhere else for that matter.

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