Categories: BrowsersWorkspace

Firefox 49 Adds Android Offline Viewing But Removes Firefox Hello From Desktop

Mozilla has released Firefox 49 for desktop and Android, improving performance and adding offline viewing for smartphones, but removing the Firefox Hello communication feature.

The non-profit organisation explained the latest release of the open source browser built on the introduction of multiprocessing in Firefox 48, which promised to isolate any potential problems so other tabs still functioned.

Firefox 49 release

“Last month, we began rolling out the most significant update in our history, adding multiprocess capabilities to Firefox on desktop, which means Firefox is more responsive and less likely to freeze. In fact, our initial tests show a 400 percent improvement in overall responsiveness,” explained Nick Nguyen, vice president of Firefox product.

“Our first phase of the rollout included users without add-ons. In this release, we’re expanding support for a small initial set of compatible add-ons as we move toward a multiprocess experience for all Firefox users in 2017.”

The reader mode now has a narrate feature so text is read aloud and there is a dark mode for night time reading. An updated Firefox Login Manager now lets HTTPS pages use HTTP logins as part of Mozilla’s encryption drive and there are improvements for Mac.

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Previously, users were unable to update Firefox on Mac unless they were the one who installed it. Now, anyone, just just administrators, can install updates.

An offline mode lets users read pages in areas with no connection, such as planes, but Mozilla has removed the WebRTC-based Firefox Hello.

Firefox Hello let users send messages and even make video calls to any other WebRC0enabled browser like Chrome or Opera, but support has been discontinued with Firefox 49.

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Steve McCaskill

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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