Updated 09:58 PM EDT, Wed, Apr 21, 2021

'Firefox' Download & Update: Browser 'Coming Soon' to Apple Devices

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Mozilla is about to release a version of its Firefox browser for Apple devices.

The company announced the news on Monday. The official launch date of browser for iOS wasn't indicated, but Mozilla said in its tweet that it is "coming out soon."

Last year, Mozilla dumped Google and made Yahoo as its default search engine, though users can still use Google, Bing, or other search engines if they want to, Mashable wrote. Firefox's early iOS version is equipped with an intelligent search feature that pops up recommended search results. The browser also has a "visual tabs" system that shows open tabs in a grid, making it easier for users to see the pages they currently have open.

Firefox allows users to sync tabs, search histories, and passwords between desktop and mobile apps as well, Mashable added. This feature can also be seen on Chrome and Apple's built-in software Safari.

The first public preview of Firefox for iPhones and iPads has started rolling out in New Zealand in September, CNET reported. The goal was to gather feedback from customers in one country before expanding to other areas and to a full public global launch before this year ends.

Mozilla already made a browser syncing iOS app called Firefox Home, Mashable noted. This browser, however, was taken down by the company in 2012. Executives said that it would not make an iOS version of Firefox unless Apple eased its restrictions on third-party developers. But all of Mozilla's apprehensions evaporated when the iOS 8 was released, which brings new extensibility features and a friendlier environment.

"Although we can't bring the full Firefox experience and rendering engine to iOS due to the restrictions, we saw an opportunity with the latest improvements and tools in iOS 8 to begin development of a Firefox experience for iOS," Mozilla wrote in a statement on its official website in May.

Mozilla to Remove Old-Tech Plug-Ins

Earlier in October, Mozilla announced that it will be dropping plug-ins created using decades-old technology by the end of 2016.

This move was also done by Google. Benjamin Smedberg, a Mozilla senior engineering manager, said in the firm's blog that support for most NPAPI plug-ins will be removed except for Adobe Flash. The latter will still be supported by Firefox.

NPAPI (Netscape Plug-in Application Programming Interface) is the plug-in standard that has been active since Netscape, the 1990s browser that Microsoft laid to rest in its antitrust, which then prompted competition over the browser market, Computerworld wrote. NPAPI is still supported by Apple's Safari, Mozilla's Firefox, and Opera Software's Opera.

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