It might be time to look at a different web browser if you have been set in your ways with how you navigate the internet. A brand new beta version of Firefox has just landed and while technically it would be Firefox 57, the changes are so big that it's getting new branding and is called Firefox Quantum.
Nick Nguyen from Mozilla wrote, "Engines are important, both in cars and in browsers. That’s why we’re so revved up this morning – we’re releasing the Beta of a whole new Firefox, one that’s powered by a completely reinvented, modernized engine. Since the version number – 57 – can’t really convey the magnitude of the changes we’ve made, and how much faster this new Firefox is, we’re calling this upcoming release Firefox Quantum."
The big benefit of Firefox Quantum over other browsers out there, according to Mozilla, is speed. Mozilla says you will feel the increased browsing speed on whatever your favorite websites are. Using the Speedometer 2.0 browser performance test Firefox Quantum is two times faster than Firefox 52. Mozilla also wants Chrome users to know that Quantum is much faster, and they have a video to back up the claim.
Firefox Quantum takes advantage of the multiple cores offered in processors inside modern computers and mobile phones to achieve this speed boost. By using more than a single available core, Quantum can complete tasks much faster than other browsers. Firefox also gets a new CSS engine that runs in parallel across multiple CPU cores. That allows faster loading of web pages and Mozilla says that Firefox Quantum is the only browser able to do this.
Quantum has also been tuned to allow the tab you are using in your browser to run faster and to download faster if other tabs are running in the background. By prioritizing the active tab, Mozilla claims Quantum uses about 30% less RAM than Chrome. Quantum has also received a tweaked UI that is meant to work well with the high DPI display common on devices today.
Part of the redesigns for the UI came via the Photon Project that Mozilla was operating. These changes on a Windows PC with a touchscreen know if you are clicking with a mouse or a finger and will change size based on what you are using.
Firefox users will be automatically updated to Quantum on November 14. The browser is available in Beta form on PC, Android or iOS. The developer edition is also available now with new tools for devs to use. Firefox 55 was the last major update we talked about, and that version brought support for VR via the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
Download the Firefox Quantum beta right here.