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Mozilla Opens the Firefox App Store To Early Testers

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the there-are-never-enough-app-stores dept.

Firefox 74

SternisheFan sends this quote from ZDNet: "Mozilla has opened its Firefox Marketplace, with Android device owners and developers getting the first access to the browser's app store. The access arrived on Thursday, in the release of the latest 'Aurora' build of Firefox for Android. Aurora is meant for developers and early adopters, as it is the test stream of Mozilla's browser. The storefront lets people find and install web applications delivered via the browser, and gives developers a place to publicize their apps. 'We're hoping that Aurora users, our awesome early adopters, will go experience the Firefox Marketplace on their Android phones and let us know what they think,' Mozilla Labs engineering manager Bill Walker said in a blog post. 'Our goal is to collect as much real-life feedback as possible about the Marketplace's design, usability, performance, reliability, and content.' ... Mozilla said it expects to follow with a Marketplace for the Firefox browser beta and Firefox OS launches next year."

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No thanks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709055)

Web crApps suck. Watching Firefox OS fail harder than WebOS will be fun, though.

The Firefox what? (1)

Spy Handler (822350) | about a year ago | (#41709073)

App Store? Marketplace? (which is it?) Why?

Yes Apple came out with something and made lots of money, but is it really a good idea for you (as a generic non-Apple entity) to make one as well?

If Ubuntu comes out with its own Ubuntu App Store, should I kill myself? And should I stop ending every sentence with a question mark?

Re:The Firefox what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709137)

There is a Canonical Software Center. Been around for years.

Re:The Firefox what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709155)

If Ubuntu comes out with its own Ubuntu App Store, should I kill myself?

Did you miss the last few Ubuntu versions?

Re:The Firefox what? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#41709343)

You mean the last 7, right? It originated in 9.10.

Re:The Firefox what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710221)

And before that they had repos since it was forked from Debian.

Re:The Firefox what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709179)

Yes. Yes. Both (App Store is the generic one). Because they can.

Yes.

They already have, so I plead the fifth on this. No, it makes it easier to respond.

Re:The Firefox what? (2)

donaggie03 (769758) | about a year ago | (#41709231)

Most App stores that are already out have both free items and pay items. The lack of pay items is the only thing keeping the Ubuntu Software Center from being called the Ubuntu App Store really. But if Ubuntu did start offering pay items through the Ubuntu Software Center, would that be so bad? More options in convenient places is a good thing. Similarly, more app stores can only give more options, not less, so that would be a good thing too. Or are you the type of person that WANTS to consume only what your Apple overlords tell you to? In other words, no one is forcing you to use every app store out there, and it doesn't make sense to want to limit thier existence.

Re:The Firefox what? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#41709287)

The USC has had paid apps for around 2 years. Where have you been?

Re:The Firefox what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709747)

Oblivious to any apps I see with a pricetag I suppose, but if USC has paid apps as well then my original point is even more valid.

Re:The Firefox what? (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about a year ago | (#41709253)

Why?

Probably to encourage add-on devs to keep their app up to date with their crazy release schedule.

A lot of the current add-ons (or apps if you will) aren't compatible with the latest firefox versions.

So make the user (probably) pay for it & encourage that the add-ons stay in compliance.

Of course there is also the opportunity for new add-ons to be developed that are worth the asking price. An example on the android market would be the psx emulator. FF7 on my phone... worth the modest price of admission.

Re:The Firefox what? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year ago | (#41710237)

This is what is sad to me, its nothing but one company after another trying to force us into their own version of Apple's little walled garden...why? Do you HONESTLY think you are gonna take shit away from Apple when it comes to share? Here's a hint, Apple has a rabid fanbase that wait outside the Apple store like waiting for concert tickets when they release a new model...you ain't gonna compete with that.

So just stop it Mozilla, its getting embarrassing. First with the aping Chrome, then with the aping Apple, we already have a Chrome and an Apple, we do NOT need an ersatz. But hey, if that makes ya happy join MSFT and Canonical on the fail train, all aboard! Oh and if an Ubuntu appstore makes you want to slit your wrists, better grab the razor because an appstore is obvious what they are going for with software center [wikipedia.org]. So all aboard the fail train, where we rip off one successful company with a legion of ersatz nobody wants!

Re:The Firefox what? (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year and a half ago | (#41714517)

Ubuntu had a desktop apps store before apple so they are not ripping off apple but they have done more than enough to be on the fail train anyway

Re:The Firefox what? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year and a half ago | (#41719257)

Well when they started calling programs "apps" instead of programs or software I consider that an Apple ripoff, as hardly anybody called them apps before Apple started doing that.

What seriously irks me though is how so many are just trying to ape Apple and Google instead of trying to innovate, its like the entire tech community saw how much money Apple was making and lost their damned minds. I mean we already HAVE an Apple and a Google, why would we want an ersatz copy? MSFT, Canonical, Mozilla, its like they all got together and said "ZOMFG Apple and Google are making crazy money! If we make a clone then we'll make crazy money too!" but in reality people will just pass the ersatz by, it just makes no damned sense to me.

If only... (4, Funny)

Andy Prough (2730467) | about a year ago | (#41709115)

If only Firefox worked with the several hundred million smart phones and tablets running the older versions of Android, then this would be about 1000% more useful. I can watch TV and movies on my Samsung Android phone, I can stream all kinds of music, I can run my desktop computer remotely from it, I can learn to speak and write Chinese, and I can make free international phone calls on it via my Vonage account. But I can't run the Firefox browser. I would say "WTF is your problem Mozilla???", but that just seems so unprofessional.

Re:If only... (1)

Windwraith (932426) | about a year ago | (#41709563)

This.
Requiring 2.3 instead of 2.2 like a lot of other apps is...weird, to say the least. And since their browser won't run in my cheap android device, I can't care less about it.

Re:If only... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709643)

Chrome requires 4.0 to run and both require hardware acceleration

Re:If only... (1)

Andy Prough (2730467) | about a year ago | (#41709737)

Chrome requires 4.0 to run and both require hardware acceleration

Well, good point. Maybe its time to go get that shiny new Galaxy Note 2 I've been lusting after...

Re:If only... (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year ago | (#41710377)

One crucial difference, because Android is made by Google Chrome has mobile share while Firefox? Doesn't even show up on most charts.

Just one more example of how Mozilla doesn't seem to get the market. if they released a fast and light version of FF for 2.2, which is the version most of the low end has settled on and just FYI but 2.2 devices were selling last numbers I saw something like 18 to 1 compared to ICS, well they would have a captive audience and could have gained some serious share. Instead all they do is copy Chrome right down to the needing a later version thus insuring they don't gain squat, way to go Moz!

Of course they aren't the only one, MSFT doesn't have shit in the way of mobile browser share either yet doesn't have enough sense to release a stripped down IE for Android, instead acting like its 2002 and they can just muscle their way into a market...sigh, its like the entire tech sector took one look at Apple and Google and the image literally knocked the brains right out of 'em, now they all run around like chickens with the head cut off squawking "We gotta copy them, we gotta copy them!" without bothering to even look at the landscape and notice that everyone that tried being an ersatz has failed miserably.

Re:If only... (1)

samoanbiscuit (1273176) | about a year and a half ago | (#41716895)

Firefox requires 2.3, not 4.x. Quite a lot of 2.2 devices can upgrade to 2.3 but not 4.x, so it's available on quite a lot more Android devices than Chrome, they do have quite a bit of this captive audience.

Have you used it on a Gingerbread device? Because it's head and shoulders better than any other browser available for Gingerbread. I've been using it on an old (released in 2010) tablet and even with it's higher system requirements, I won't go back to Opera, Dolphin or stock. Firefox has always moved pretty slowly, it just seemed quicker because for quite a long time during it's rise in popularity it was competing (on windows) against IE 6, which stayed still in the water for years.

Re:If only... (1)

Andy Prough (2730467) | about a year ago | (#41709689)

You are right - and maybe I should go slap down a few Benjamins and upgrade my Android phone so that this ONE browser would work. However, there are over 15 web browsers I can add in the Google Play store right now - but not Firefox? C'mon Mozilla - pull it together.

Re:If only... (3, Informative)

BZ (40346) | about a year ago | (#41709809)

http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/mobile/platforms/ [mozilla.org] says Firefox for Android runs on 2.2.

Re:If only... (1)

Windwraith (932426) | about a year ago | (#41709887)

Huhmm? Must be a recent change, I am pretty sure I heard the opposite from Planet Mozilla's posts about FF for Android, though, unfortunately my RSS reader doesn't keep many posts, I'll have to dig to find the source.
Also the fact that it refuses to install in my 2.2 tablet, which never refused any other piece of software marked for 2.2. It can run Chrome and Opera, Dolphin too, Firefox is the only one that doesn't, but should.

Re:If only... (1)

BZ (40346) | about a year ago | (#41710001)

Uh... Chrome needs Android 4.0. There's no way you're running Chrome on a 2.2 tablet. ;)

What's the actual tablet model, if you're willing to say? I'll see if I can figure out why you can't install it. Also, what version did you try installing?

Re:If only... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710043)

It cannot run Chrome. It needs Android 4.0 or ICS

Re:If only... (1)

BZ (40346) | about a year ago | (#41709869)

Andy, what Android version do you have? Firefox runs on 2.2 and above, which according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_(operating_system)#Usage_share [wikipedia.org] as of today covers about 96% of Android devices. It's possible you're in the 4%, but it's also possible that your real problem is your processor, not your Android version. If so (if you're using an armv6 processor), there is ongoing work to make Firefox work on those that should hopefully ship in late November.

Re:If only... (1)

Windwraith (932426) | about a year ago | (#41709931)

Uhmm, I just checked and it's armv7, so it should work. There is enough space in the internal partition, and other browsers run properly. It just refuses to install.
I mean the device is cheap but not THAT cheap...

Re:If only... (1)

Andy Prough (2730467) | about a year ago | (#41710369)

Yeah, I'm running 2.3.6, and its supposed to be a 1 GHz Snapdragon on this thing. Maybe Firefox doesn't play nice with the Snapdragon, I don't know. According to Wikipedia, I'm probably running the armv7 processor instruction set on it. It's an older, cheaper phone, but slick as hell and runs amazing apps. I hope Mozilla makes it work on these chip sets in November - that would be great to try. If I don't buy one of those Note 2's next week, that is -- man those are some cool looking monsters.

Re:If only... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710563)

Firefox is available for almost all android platforms just not in the final versions. They are available in beta, aurora, and nightly stages. Check the link. https://wiki.mozilla.org/Mobile/Platforms/Android
Just make sure you download the version that matches your phones OS version and Processor.

The "App"ification of Everything Continues (4, Insightful)

GerbilSoft (761537) | about a year ago | (#41709127)

Now that any generic webpage can be considered an "app", how long will it take before everything's an "app"? Photos? Apps. Videos? Apps. USB cables? They're no longer USB cables, they're "app cables". Heck, drop the cables - they're just "apps" too.

Besides that point, most of these so-called "apps" are worthless. I remember a time when Apple fans used to proudly proclaim that even though there was less software on the Mac platform, they were higher quality than Windows programs. Now that the iPhone has hundreds of thousands of apps, quality doesn't matter anymore.

At least Firefox hasn't gone full Windows 8 and reduced everything to 16 colors (yet)...

Re:The "App"ification of Everything Continues (1)

aliquis (678370) | about a year and a half ago | (#41711465)

On iOS the situation is better.

Anyway, what I really wanted to say is that they got a shitload of "run/converted through cider"-software to.

This criticism is well-justified (1)

Burz (138833) | about a year and a half ago | (#41713845)

An Internet where people can't be trusted or bothered to enter a URL on their own would be no real Internet at all. It means that the semantics of *who* you are dealing with don't matter nearly as much as the middlemen and their enticing trails of pretty icons. It's IdiocracyNet.

I was going to donate to Mozilla this year, but I decided instead that someone there really needs to get a clue first. The flash-related memory leaks were fixed for a little while in V10, and then came back (and still back after six more iterations). They added a security layer to Add-on downloads and updates... but instead of using GPG like they should have, they based it on CAs (PKI) which have big security issues and so is practically an invitation for abusive governments and more resourceful criminals to MITM malware into our systems.

Mozilla need to start demonstrating real leadership and deep understanding of emerging problems or else be prepared to have their asses forked.

Hey Mozilla (2, Insightful)

AuMatar (183847) | about a year ago | (#41709151)

You're doing a halfassed job of writing your flagship browser at the moment. There's no way in hell I'm using your app store or your OS. This type of wasted effort, useless featuritis, and loss of focus is why you're losing ground.

Re:Hey Mozilla (4, Insightful)

sl4shd0rk (755837) | about a year ago | (#41709427)

You're doing a halfassed job of writing your flagship browser at the moment.

Well, considering the alternatives, I'd say they're doing OK:
IE) is and always has been an application supporting only bastardized version of the HTML standard and focused on adoption of M$ proprietary extensions/standards.

Opera) Closed source and Ad-ridden.

Chrome) All your Web belong to Google. Dubious "Sandboxed" native code execution.

Konqueror/Rekonq) Seems to work sometimes.

Given the alternatives, I don't see Firefox doing anything egregious. In fact, their efforts are laudable. They make an effort to maintain an open-source product that you can download for free. The Mozilla offerings are probably the least suspect when it comes to privacy issues. Mozilla has their fair share of bugs, but honestly a lot of the complaining I read about Firefox is due to misbehaving plugins as well as users not understanding their system resources.

Maybe I live under a rock but the Mozilla products work great for me. Can you point out some factual information behind your rant? If One of the other offerings are far superior I'd really be interested.

Re:Hey Mozilla (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#41709477)

Protip: Opera removed all ads in 2005.

Re:Hey Mozilla (1)

Threni (635302) | about a year ago | (#41709877)

They're never going to live that down, are they? "Opera - Browser of choice for phones too shit to run a decent browser like Chrome or Dolphin, or with not enough memory to run Firefox. But hey, no adverts - and it's free now!".

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41713653)

I contest that, I have found that the Opera browser on my phone is BETTER than chrome or dolphin

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709499)

My personal favorite is Konqueror.
I've never used Opera, but even I know the ads have been gone for 7 years.

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709557)

SeaMonkey

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709581)

Mozilla's Firefox is the best. They've been doing it consistently for the past few years, and across different platforms. It's the reason WHY the other browsers exist, and why the number of suicides among the IE web developers is at an all time low.

Ever since the first version I tried, 0.9something up till today, it was the best, and safest option.

I tried Chrome, but it's too hardware intensive for the websites I use. IE, doesn't run on Linux (it could, but why would I want to?). Opera ... belongs in a museum, and Konq, well, at it's height in KDE 3.4, it was still crashy as hell.

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710147)

http://dolphin-browser.com/

Re:Hey Mozilla (1)

aliquis (678370) | about a year and a half ago | (#41711459)

Yeah. You seem to know what you're talking about.

Not.

I do understand my system resources. Firefox do to. And Opera, Firefox and Chrome likely all use them differently. IE doesn't since it doesn't run on my machine. Well. Chrome more or less don't either, just occasionally.

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709513)

Says you. I really like the new console, even more so than the console of Firebug. The dev toolbar is also an instant classic to me. I also like the non-profit direction Mozilla pushes the web towards. Unlike Chrome that submits what I type to their servers, or IE, or Safari. Keep on truckin' open-source and free Mozilla (you work super on linux; even as an Ice Weasel).

And bring on the Firefox mobile OS too, because iOS, Droid, WP7, and Blackberry don't do it for me, (although the Jolla Sailfish SDK might).

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710959)

They are? Oh, I get it. This is supposed to be funny, one of those "this is the voice of the average youth who moved on to Chrome a few years ago and hasn't checked to see how far Firefox has come since then."

No, wait, apparently it's "insightful". Clearly there are a lot of people out there who share your uninformed farce of an opinion. I can't wait for the next big shiny browser to come along so you'll start telling Google they're doing a half-assed job.

Re:Hey Mozilla (1)

AuMatar (183847) | about a year ago | (#41711021)

Nope, I don't trust Google enough to use Chrome. I'm a SeaMonkey fan- also known as Firefox without the insane release cycle and with a decent UI. Amsuingly enough, I don't even use the rest of the programs it comes bundled with.

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41711735)

Nope, I don't trust Google enough to use Chrome. I'm a SeaMonkey fan- also known as Firefox without the insane release cycle and with a decent UI. Amsuingly enough, I don't even use the rest of the programs it comes bundled with.

Why not just use the extended support version of Firefox?

Re:Hey Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41713659)

I've always found the seamonkey UI dated. I mean I don't think that you should Chromify your UI but seamonkey just has a 90's UI that properly stinks. Also Seamonkey DO have the same release pattern as Firefox now, they just don't increase the major version, only the minor version

Makes kinda sense (1, Insightful)

Floyd-ATC (2619991) | about a year ago | (#41709273)

This must be what they've been doing instead of fixing the crazy startup time, shutdown time and memory consumption. Kinda logical really, if you can't fix the underlying problem just make sure users make an investment in some apps that only work with Firefox. That way the users are less likely to give up and just use a competing browser. Some of you may have seen this trick before.

Re:Makes kinda sense (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about a year ago | (#41709351)

You do realize this will fix the things you are asking for, right. Addons are the ones that usually cause crazy startup time, shutdown time and memory consumption (which is crazy low, already). If people pay for addons, may be the addon developers can spend some quality time in fixing their addons. May be that is all is needed to fix the problems you asking for.

Re:Makes kinda sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709761)

Except, paid software is not any more free of bugs than free software. Specially in smartphones.
This will turn addons we take for granted into paid components because this kind of thing tends to ignite the greed in every developer.

Re:Makes kinda sense (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about a year ago | (#41710091)

Well, most (and I think all) addons I use are GPLed. Even if the developers move into paid only version, I am sure there will be people maintaining the GPLed versions. Only reason people will pay is because the paid version is far better. It is a win-win in my opinion.

Re:Makes kinda sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41710993)

I'm sorry, it must suck in your alternate reality where Mozilla hasn't been fixing those things. I can completely understand why you'd jump to the conclusion that Mozilla is trying to lock people into their technology.

Who's the audience for this? (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about a year ago | (#41709417)

Who's the audience for this?

1) People who love free browsers so much that they'll buy apps for them?
2) People who can't find what they want among the Android's 500K free apps?
3) People who switched to Firefox to avoid browser lock-in (e.g., IE) but now want to their apps to be locked to specific browser?
4) Developers who would purchase some kind of developers license in the hopes that someone won't instantly clone their app before they make their developer fee back?
5) ???

Seriously - can someone "on the inside" tell me who's clamoring for this?

Re:Who's the audience for this? (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about a year ago | (#41709461)

People who want better addons. I am not on the inside though, just some random guy.

Re:Who's the audience for this? (1)

Windwraith (932426) | about a year ago | (#41709855)

Paid is not better. Paid is usually only more expensive unless there's no alternative at all.
Geez, I can't wait for the PRO version of adblock or noscript, it'll be hilarious.

Re:Who's the audience for this? (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about a year ago | (#41710133)

I suppose you meant especially when there is no alternative. The addons I use are all GPLed. The chances of there being no alternative is close to impossible. If the developers become dicks or greedy, I am sure there will free GPLed alternatives available.

Re:Who's the audience for this? (1)

BZ (40346) | about a year and a half ago | (#41711879)

1) Users of Firefox OS

2) You're assuming the apps are not free as in beer. A number of them will be, of course. That's true in both the Android and Apple stores...

A: (1)

Burz (138833) | about a year and a half ago | (#41713867)

People who choose Firefox OS instead of Android, iOS, etc. and want their apps available on other machines too.

The problem with this is the "apps" are mostly websites where you don't get to see the URL and you're treated like a big, fat dummy in other ways too. Mozilla are hopping on Apple's anti-browser bandwagon.

Firefox App Store (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709623)

on Firefox version over 9000...

Re:Firefox App Store (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709669)

That'll be the one out by Halloween, right?

Re:Firefox App Store (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41713671)

...taking it's place right next to Chrome version 100k

App Stores (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#41709863)

I'm getting sick of it. Steam, iTunes, Google Play, Windows 8's proposed app store, and now this...

When did we get so fixated on becoming a nation of middlemen?

Re:App Stores (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41713701)

Because it is actually easier to a lot of people to get the programs and content they want WHEN they want it. The traditional model breaks down when, like at the moment, there is a whole lot of good software that isn't discovered by many people because it isn't either in a box in brick-and-mortar shops nor advertised on google. The middleman software/store allows the discoverability and thus usage of software to go up by a fair ammount because it allows you your target audience to see it and install it without being battered by hundreds of results that your average google search in a software category will return.

That being said, the trick to managing how you implement these middlemen solutions is to not make them the only way to find/install software. This leads to BIG problems down the track

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