I love Firefox on my Android phone. It’s everything that I could hope for from a mobile Web browser. I will be the first to admit that it’s a little ugly though. It’s a mobile Web browser, all of them are ugly to some degree because the screen is too small. That’s not a good enough excuse and Mozilla completely agrees. That’s why they’re redesigning the mobile Firefox experience from the ground up.
We got a look at the new Firefox Mobile look a few weeks ago, but it was just a few slides without any kind of explanation behind the design itself. Patryk Adamczyk has more information on the new design over at the Mozilla UX blog. He says that the new design is “focused on a swift, direct mobile experience.” What does that mean? It means that the new Firefox Mobile will be putting its design emphasis on the content instead of the unnecessary aesthetics that permeate the current Firefox mobile.
The new Firefox Mobile design is meant to “communicate Firefox’s character subtly through a tasteful aesthetic which accents the native design language.” This is achieved through the new start page which features a colorful layout with large thumbnails, a unified curved tab design and screen data being integrated into the start page. Check out the design with the new Firefox in the front and the old design in the back.
As shown off previously, the new Firefox Android design is indicative of a larger movement within Mozilla to redesign Firefox across all platforms. The Android version is just the first and will be iterated upon for the future of Firefox on tablets and other devices with portrait or landscape orientations.
As to the color of the browser, they feel that using the default colors that Android provides doesn’t serve to differentiate Firefox Mobile from the other browsers. That’s why Mozilla will be using their distinctive orange color alongside a blue-silver to show that the new Firefox Mobile experience is something unique.
The color also serves another purpose – to draw users to the correct interactivity points. Since people will be using the new design on touch devices, it makes sense that they want to attract users to the interactive bits. Having a unified, colorful design will make people feel at home no matter which version of Firefox they’re using.
The rest of the post talks about the sizing of the various apps and what the team at Mozilla has gone through to make this new version. It’s an interesting read and one that really speaks to the design side of development. Any Web developer who is also a designer will want to take a look.