Mozilla Extends Extension Support for Firefox on Android


Mozilla has announced the expansion of extension support for Firefox on Android, a move that has been long-awaited by the Firefox community. In the past, only a limited set of recommended extensions were enabled, leaving users frustrated and wondering why it took so long to implement this feature. Let’s dive into the reasons behind the delay, the challenges faced by the development team, and the impact this extension support will have on the Firefox browsing experience.

The Long Journey to Extension Support

The journey towards implementing extension support in Firefox for Android was not an easy one. It involved a complete rewrite of the user interface (UI), which was launched in 2020. The rewrite required substantial reimplementation time for extension support, resulting in a gradual rollout of this feature. Initially, only a small set of recommended extensions were enabled, with more being added over time. However, this update still did not fully satisfy users, as many extensions were still not supported.

Several factors contributed to the extended timeline for extension support. One factor was the challenging nature of rewriting the application as a modern Android app, which took a toll on the development team. Unrealistic deadlines, high expectations, and the sheer volume of work led to burnout within the team. However, despite the difficulties faced, the team remained dedicated and managed to bring extension support to Firefox on Android.

The Focus on Ad Blocking Extensions

During the development process, the team made the strategic decision to prioritize support for ad blocking extensions. This decision was based on the popularity of these extensions among users. By focusing on a limited set of APIs, primarily geared toward ad blockers, the team was able to ensure compatibility with the most widely-used web extensions.

One of the key extensions that was enabled from the very beginning was uBlock Origin, a powerful ad blocker. This extension played a crucial role in enhancing the browsing experience for users. The availability of uBlock Origin, along with other ad blocking extensions, mitigated some of the frustrations users experienced with Firefox on Android.

User Feedback and Community Support

Throughout the development process, the Firefox community provided valuable feedback and expressed their expectations for extension support. Users expressed their gratitude to the development team for their efforts in bringing this much-awaited feature to Firefox on Android. The ability to use ad blockers on mobile devices was especially appreciated, as ads on mobile platforms can make browsing experiences unpleasant and data-heavy.

In addition to ad blockers, users also voiced their desire for other types of extensions, such as those providing enhanced video player controls. While not all user requests could be immediately addressed, the implementation of extension support opens up possibilities for future enhancements and a wider range of extensions to be available on Firefox for Android.

Moving Forward with Extension Support

With the expansion of extension support, Firefox on Android now offers a more robust browsing experience. Users have greater control over their browsing, including the ability to block ads, implement privacy extensions, and customize their browsing experience with a wider range of extensions.

While the journey towards extension support took longer than expected, it is a testament to the dedication of the development team and the challenges they faced along the way. The rewrite of Firefox for Android’s UI was a necessary step to provide a more modern and efficient browsing experience. The addition of extension support brings Firefox for Android closer to its desktop counterpart, aligning the features and capabilities of both platforms.

As Mozilla continues to improve and evolve Firefox on Android, the extension support will be refined and expanded further. Users can look forward to an increasingly powerful and customizable browsing experience, making Firefox a strong contender in the mobile browser market.

So, if you haven’t already, go ahead and update your Firefox for Android to take advantage of the newly expanded extension support. Say goodbye to unwanted ads and hello to a more personalized browsing experience. Mozilla has listened to the users, and now Firefox for Android is better than ever.


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