Firefox Remains Android-Only, No Plans For iOS

IT Management

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Even though Google's focus, in relation to smartphone web browsing anyway, is firmly on Google Chrome for the Android, that doesn't mean Mozilla has any plans of branching out to other mobile phone platforms.

Thanks to a report at Pocket-lint, Mozilla's goals for Firefox Mobile have been solidified, saying the Android platform is where the Firefox browser will remain for the time being:

"We haven't seen any change there," [Jay Sullivan, Mozilla's VP of Products] said at a MWC briefing in Barcelona referring to Mozilla's relationships with Apple and RIM. "There are no plans for PlayBook or iOS... Right now, aside from Boot to Gecko, we're really focused on Android," he said. "It's really got the market share, it's where people are and we're off to a good start.

"We've shipped something like a little over 8 million downloads of the Firefox browser for Android and we have a new update that's coming up with some massive performance increases including Flash click to play." [Emphasis added]

While the Android OS does indeed have the higher market share in relation to smartphone operating systems, the iPhone is still the most popular mobile device. Granted, Mozilla is targeting software as opposed to the hardware that runs these mobile operating systems.

Because iOS is only available on Apple devices, Mozilla clearly feels its browser will be better suited for the mobile OS that fits multiple devices. As for the potential Android Chrome confliction, Sullivan's feels there's room for both browsing platforms:

"I don't see that happening. We like to see a competitive browser market and I think Google does too. There are several browsers for Android and Chrome only runs with Ice Cream Sandwich."

Sullivan goes on to say that there have been over 8 million downloads of the browser since it became available to Android users, and that an update is soon expected. Apparently, one of the new features includes the ability to play Flash-based multimedia files, which could help explain, in part, anyway, Mozilla's resistance to the iOS environment.