Firefox for iPads and iPhone now available to select group of beta testers

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A select number of users can start testing Firefox for iOS. The test is remarkable as Mozilla has long been reluctant to submit the browser to Apple due to its App Store rules which prevented Firefox to use its own browser engine. Nevertheless, Mozilla is currently looking for the first beta testers for Firefox for the iPad and iPhone which will use the Webkit engine.

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Firefox for iOS is currently nothing more than a skin for Apple’s Webkit and Nitro Javascript engines. Nevertheless, Mozilla has likely decided to start offering a browser on iOS due to its dropping market share, especially on mobile devices. The minimum requirement for the Firefox Beta is iOS 8 and the pre-release version might still contain some serious bug and might not work as expected.

Mozilla has long refused to implement Firefox for iOS, because it didn’t want to comply with Apple’s App Store policy. This policy prevents app developers to use another browser engine than the default one on iOS.

 

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Firefox has a lot to gain on mobile platforms. According to NetApplications  almost 40 percent of all mobile users browse with mobile Safari on the go and 30 percent with Chrome. Firefox has a market share of only 0.58 percent on mobile platforms.

Update: At the moment Mozilla no longer accepts new testers

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