Mozilla’s attempt to recreate the success of FireFox on the handheld with its mobile browser initiative code-named fennec has entered pre-alpha test stage. The browser is seeing great many improvements in the efficiency, memory footprint and execution.
There are more features that are planned for the browser that will ingrain it into the touchscreen experience that was all the more popularized by the iPhone. Ongoing processes also includes better integration with desktops and other computing equipment and essentially making the browser the main application for the mobile experience rather than just another app on the mobile.
Add-ons, the one feature that has endeared FireFox to its users will also be supported for the mobile browser. The browser will look to be platform agnostic.
The iPhone has set a very high benchmark to mobile computing and as more equipment makers seek to get similar features into their phones, application developers for mobiles get a lot more leverage to be creative.
Mozilla’s Fennec will enter the mobile space as a major competitor to already established players like Opera and the IE. But entering late in the game may prove helpful here since developers get a chance to anticipate the kind of innovation that is taking place in the mobile equipment space. Nokia is also partnering with Mozilla in the mobile browser effort and most certainly will look to the browser when it comes out with its challenge to the iPhone
With Google’s Android software stack based handsets set to debut this year, expect Mozilla to be ready by then to make full use of the features that would come with the handsets. Touch and gesture based interfaces have infinite possibilities from the UI perspective and here’s hoping that Fennec will extend their applicability to the full.