Mozilla has released a new Firefox (version 61) across all platforms: Android, Linux, macOS, and Windows. With the latest release, Mozilla promises performance improvements, safer online experience, and “features that let you do more without leaving the webpage you are on.” The Firefox 61 comes only a month after the release of Firefox 60, and is the fourth major update of Mozilla’s flagship browser in the year so far. The new browser version includes new features, bugfixes, security fixes, and modifications to the Firefox UI.
Among the new features in the Firefox browser, are improved performance capabilities that build upon the speed gains that the Firefox 57 Quantum release brought, back in November 2017. Additionally, tab management has received a boost in Firefox 61, enabling power users to manage browser tabs more effectively. Mozilla promises faster switching between tabs on Windows and Linux with Firefox 61. It has also added support to allow WebExtensions to hide tabs.
“One of the most popular uses of browser extensions is to help users better manage their open tabs,” Matt Claypotch, a developer and Web platform advocate at Mozilla, wrote in a blog post. “Firefox 61 ships with new extension APIs to help power users use tabs more powerfully.”
Additionally, the settings for customising your homepage and new tab page in Firefox have been added to a new Preferences section. The settings can also be accessed via the gear icon on the New Tab page. One of the key highlights of the latest release is the ability to add search engines to the Firefox browser’s ‘Search with’ list. You can now add search engines to the address bar ‘Search with’ tool from the page action menu when on a webpage that provides an OpenSearch plugin. Mozilla has made it easier to share links from Firefox for macOS. You can now share the URL of an active tab from the page actions menu in the address bar.
Another new feature in Firefox 61 is Tab Warming, which promises faster response time when switching between tabs, thanks to Firefox pre-emptively loading tabs as a mouse is hovered over the tab. Also, users can access to the pages they frequently visitquickly, thanks to a Retained Display Lists feature. The new functionality locally remembers content that has been visited previously, so it doesn’t need to be reloaded each time users visit the site.
Additionally, a new Accessibility Tools Inspector gives the ability to creators and developers to easily make pages for users with accessibility requirements. Finally, for Android, the browser update brings faster scrolling “due to treating touch event listeners as passive by default”.
Other improvements in Firefox 61 include parallel CSS parsing and TLS 1.3 support enabled bydefault. Firefox 61 also patches 18 security issues, with Mozilla rating six of the issues as having a critical impact. The full changelog from Mozilla has been posted on its release notes.