Firefox Announces New 'Quantum' Browser With 2X Faster Speeds, Coming November 14

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Firefox today announced that the latest version of its web browsing software -- which it's calling "Firefox Quantum" instead of "Firefox 57" -- will be available as an update for users beginning November 14, with a beta of the browser hitting iOS, Android, and desktop today.


The company said that the biggest advantage of Quantum is its speed, which is twice as fast as Firefox 52 when measured using Speedometer 2.0, a benchmark that simulates modern web applications. Firefox said that Quantum takes advantage of multiple CPU cores offered by today's desktop and mobile devices, instead of running on just one core, resulting in a "dramatically faster" web browser.

The company updated a few other features so that Quantum runs smoothly, including making sure that the tab open on the browser downloads and runs prior to other tabs in the background. When compared to Chrome -- which Firefox directly compared itself to in a new video -- Quantum is said to be faster than Google's browser, "while consuming roughly 30 percent less RAM."


The user experience of Quantum has also been overhauled and enhanced through the company's Photon project, which tasked Firefox's design team to research and understand "how users perceive web browsers." The team's findings have resulted in a more "modern" design that's built for "task focused" users. Quantum also comes with more direct integration with read-it-later app Pocket, which Mozilla acquired last year.
The new, minimalist design introduces square tabs, smooth animations, and a Library, which provides quick access to your saved stuff: bookmarks, Pocket, history, downloads, tabs, and screenshots. Firefox Quantum feels right at home with today's mouse and touch-driven operating systems: Windows 10, macOS High Sierra, Android Oreo, and iOS 11.
Quantum will also continue to support Firefox's "Tracking Protection" privacy technology, which the company found to mitigate invasive tracking of online activity throughout various studies. Specifically, Firefox's technology demonstrated a 67.5 percent reduction in the number of cookies set to a user's browsing habits during a visit to 200 websites. These improvements also allow for performance enhancements, according to Firefox, reducing page load times by as much as 44 percent and lowering mobile data usage by 39 percent on the sites visited in the study.

Firefox encourages users to sign up to be notified regarding news about the new Quantum browser, which can be done on the company's website right here. Ahead of the November 14 public launch, developers can also download the Firefox Quantum: Developer Edition starting today.

Article Link: Firefox Announces New 'Quantum' Browser With 2X Faster Speeds, Coming November 14
 

BaltimoreMediaBlog

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Since Firefox ranges from half the speed of Safari to non-functional now (sometimes, just never ending Javascript delays), this just might make it competitive finally. I say might.

I stopped saving cookies and history in Firefox for any length of time mainly because it really only works well with a clean slate to start with. Any history seems to boggle its mind. :(
 

Keirasplace

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Since Firefox ranges from half the speed of Safari to non-functional now (sometimes, just never ending Javascript delays), this just might make it competitive finally. I say might.

I stopped saving cookies and history in Firefox for any length of time mainly because it really only works well with a clean slate to start with. Any history seems to boggle its mind. :(
Funny on my machine it’s chrome which is slow as crap, îm running the dev edition.
 

trusso

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Oct 4, 2003
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Aw, shucks. Mozilla's marketing team must have been hard at work to come up with that one! It's surely not some hackneyed buzzword to try and gain back users.

Some advice for Mozilla (and Apple, you listen now, too): being "hip" will only get you so far. You best deliver what the people want, or we'll go find someone else. ;)
 

shamino

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I hope they fix these problems. In recent months (since switching to a multi-process model), FF has been very slow on my Macs. And version 55 has been unstable on Windows (often crashes when trying to play video).
 
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Return Zero

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I don't use firefox much anymore, and I'm long past the point where browser speed is an issue in my workflow, but competition through tech progress is always good!
 

yesjam

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I don’t know why one would run any browser other than Safari on a Mac, especially a laptop or other mobile device. I’m certain that 90+% of users’ needs would be met by Safari, and Safari sips energy and contributes to increased battery life. Furthermore, the small percentage of users who run Chrome or Firefox out of necessity aren’t likely to change their habits for relatively small speed bumps and/or efficiency gains.

Superior speed, efficiency, cloud integration, and aesthetics are my reasons for running Safari and I don’t anticipate that changing any time soon. Even if a browser surpasses Safari in any one of those categories, no other browser is as good at all of them.
 

bwintx

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Too little, too late. Going to take more than this to dislodge the leaders (Safari on iOS, Chrome everywhere else). But it's good that Mozilla's still giving it a shot.
 
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Vanilla35

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Big fan of this. Although based on that video, Chrome still loads all the important things faster (lol). I have always liked Firefox better than Chrome, but my decision to stick with Chrome for so long has been due to the sure dominance in performance Chrome has had. I doubt this will change anytime soon, but wish Firefox well.
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I don’t know why one would run any browser other than Safari on a Mac, especially a laptop or other mobile device. I’m certain that 90+% of users’ needs would be met by Safari, and Safari sips energy and contributes to increased battery life. Furthermore, the small percentage of users who run Chrome or Firefox out of necessity aren’t likely to change their habits for relatively small speed bumps and/or efficiency gains.

Superior speed, efficiency, cloud integration, and aesthetics are my reasons for running Safari and I don’t anticipate that changing any time soon. Even if a browser surpasses Safari in any one of those categories, no other browser is as good at all of them.
I can guarantee you chrome users (even on Mac) is not a "smaller percentage". Lots of people buy a Mac and immediately install Chrome.

Although aside from that, I agree with your sentiment. People would normally be happy using Safari, if they tried it for long enough.

I gave it a 1 month trial (when buying my first Mac, 3 years ago), but too many little quirks, layout differences, loading speed differences, turned me off.
 

Sasparilla

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But will vimperator work on it? Haven't been able to upgrade from 49 because I can't live without vimperator.
Almost certainly not - this is the release where they throw all the old plugin architecture that was one of their advantages completely over the side and they won't work anymore. Same for the XUL UI plugins. And drop their unique UI. New plugins are basically Chrome plugins from what I've read. And drop the dedicated Search field. After ditching Firefox's UI and going to Chrome plugins the option is there (stage is set?) for Mozilla to drop their own expensive browser engine development and just use Chromium.

For those that still want the dedicated search field like Firefox before - there is Vivaldi which is working well these days - (the folks that created the original Opera are doing this) and gives you thumbnails you can update on demand (somewhat like Safari of old): https://vivaldi.com/
 

nutmac

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Too little, too late. Going to take more than this to dislodge the leaders (Safari on iOS, Chrome everywhere else). But it's good that Mozilla's still giving it a shot.
It probably was always too late, given Safari is the default browser on iOS and macOS and Chrome is the default browser on Android and Chromebook.

However, I really like Firefox as the second browser. It's considerably less resource intensive than Chrome and looks more native.
 
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neliason

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It probably was always too late, given Safari is the default browser on iOS and macOS and Chrome is the default browser on Android and Chromebook.
True, but Windows desktops still account for a large share of the market and Chrome has been really popular on it. Internet Explorer is terrible but Edge isn’t so bad.

I’m not even sure quality (however measured or perceived) accounts for most people’s choice of browser. What I mean is my wife uses Chrome. I think it is because she used to have to use a website for work that said you had to use Chrome. Of course Safari and Opera worked fine as far as I could tell. But the developers were interested in limiting their work (rightfully so) by telling people to use Chrome. It was the same in the early days when websites said you have to use IE. Of course back then it was really true. IE was so messed up proper browsers wouldn’t render it anywhere near usable.
 
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fairuz

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Funny on my machine it’s chrome which is slow as crap, îm running the dev edition.
Both Chrome and Firefox are slow as crap on my machine, so I use Safari. Firefox is a good secondary because it doesn't use native proxy settings or the Keychain and doesn't have any Google login junk, so I can have an isolated browser for dev stuff, but that of course makes it suck as a primary browser. And FF used to be fast and light; IDK what happened to it.
 
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