Of late, a major release of the popular web browser, Firefox by the non-profit Mozilla, has been pushed to the release channel. With complete UI overhauls, and new features, the version 29 of the browser has finally landed.
Following Thunderbird, which embraced Australis since long, Firefox 29 is the first official i.e., release version of the open source browser sporting the new Australis interface. This new look, constantly highlighted by Mozilla for nearly two years with numerous sneak peeks, preview builds and teasers, has finally come to its flagship browser.
On her personal blog, Jennifer Morrow, senior user experience designer at Mozilla, wrote,
“It’s not an interface adjustment or tweak. It’s not a bug fix. It’s a complete re-envisioning of Firefox’s user experience, and it’s been brewing for the past five years,”
At the first glance, the new look somewhat looks a lot like its main rival, Google Chrome, which is clear from the rounded tabs and a menu icon in the upper right corner at the side of the awesome bar, just like the Chrome’s Wrench menu. Nonetheless, it’s still stands out amongst others by maintaining the traditional Mozilla-esque look with the heavily orange colour scheme, an oversized back button, and default menu options in the toolbar.
The most prominent change, which is can be summed as the greatest change with Firefox 29, is that the Windows 7-era (ribbon, as many say) orange “Firefox” has been removed, and instead moved to the side of the title bar, with an icon of a “hamburger”. It is simpler, and now has the ability to be customized with drag-and-drop, and again whose interface has been heavily customized too! Out-of-the-box, this menu is quite streamlined with the necessities, such as the option to open window, private browsing, download webpage, printing, history, full screen, page search, browser options, add-ons, and developer tools. Tabs have been rounded and only the active tab has an outline, the rest just blend beautifully with the background.
If you wish to customize, you can easily do that to your heart’s content by clicking the “Customize” option at the bottom of the Firefox menu. This fires up a special tab where, with a click of a mouse and few simple gestures, you can add buttons to the menu or the toolbar. The tab aslo provide options to show hide or show toolbars. And if you aren’t a fan of new buttons and all, you still can get the trusted menu bar back by right clicking the title bar and selecting “Menu bar”. And, another useful option is to get back the traditional title-bar easily, by toggling the “Title bar” tab in the “Customize” tab. This is a great feature and helps in moving window instances around. This feature was present as a hidden tweak as “browser.drawOnTitleBar” in the about:config window in earlier versions.
Among other features that have been brought in are the Gamepad API, a great supplement to the WebGL and will allow users to play games directly on the Web Browser with support for all their favourite gamepads. New HTML5 controls and more.
So, Grab your copy from Mozilla or if you are a Mozilla Firefox user, then you may wait for the scheduled auto-update or can manually update from the “About Firefox” box.