Mozilla has launched an early beta version of the next Firefox browser (Firefox 4) and plans to release further beta's for testing every two to three weeks. The goal, Mozilla said, is to improve the development process by receiving feedback from developers quickly and getting fixes and changes tested earlier than in previous Firefox development cycles.
The most noticeable improvement to Firefox 4 has to do with the look of the browser. The tabs have been moved to the top to make it easier to control the tools in the web browser itself. Also, if you have Windows 7 or Windows Vista, the menu bar was replaced with a single Firefox button so you can get to the most-used options with just one click.
Under the hood, Firefox 4 integrates a new add-on manager that provides users with more space to handle add-ons, themes and plug-ins. Developers will also be able to build Firefox add-ons more quickly using the new Jetpack SDK to safely connect to existing libraries.
With Firefox 4, users will no longer have to restart the browser in order to install a new add-on or recover from a crash. When a plug-in crashes or freezes, you will be able to resume browsing by simply refreshing the page.
Firefox is known for its add-ons, where it has established one of the richest environments for new capabilities, positioning it as a platform unto itself. Add-ons, extensions and apps are becoming important for browser vendors because it creates additional options for its users.
Future beta releases of Firefox 4 will enable users to synchronize settings, passwords, bookmarks, history, open tabs and other customizations across multiple devices.
If you are interested in helping Mozilla test the future Firefox, download the beta version of Firefox 4 by clicking on the link below. If you are interested in downloading the latest official Firefox release (version 3.6.8) click on the link below.
Firefox 4 Beta