We Fight For the User

My last blog post looked at what winning (and losing) might look like.

So now we ask: how do we win?

Answer: like this (audio version).

Key points and aspirations from Brendan’s talk:

  • Open web apps – cross-platform and cross-renderer
  • Multiple competing app stores
  • Distribution deals for Firefox on Android
  • Boot to Gecko (a complete OS stack)
  • Firefox Home everywhere
  • Not rewriting Firefox on top of WebKit
  • High-quality Firefox on iOS (either in the store or not)
  • Focus on ARM performance
  • Firefox on Windows Phone 7 as a native app
  • Fixing lock-in wherever we go

Game on! :-)

6 thoughts on “We Fight For the User

  1. Not rewriting Firefox on top of Webkit: I agree 100%. Or at least not calling it Firefox. “Firefox” on iOS should be just as high quality as on any other OS, built on Gecko, and if that requires jailbreaking, so much the worse for Apple dictators. Oh, and BTW, an article about overthrowing dictatures from back in April: “The Power of Mockery”, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/17/opinion/17kristof.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

    Boot to Gecko: hm, interesting. I can hazily imagine it on handheld devices at some indeterminate future time. But on laptops, desktops, even IBM mainframes (many of which run on Linux XEN kernels nowadays? That would enormously surprise me. I believe that there will always be room for Mozilla apps running “on top of” some general-purpose kernel, even if someday we also see devices booting to… who knows? some kind of SeaMonkey-like suite maybe? ;-)

  2. Regain Respect. Mozilla must regain respect of the users by building the best browser on the most open ecosystems (desktop, android, maybe webOS). Don’t endorse closed ecosystems like iOS.

    The reason most people prefer Chrome is not because of minimalism, its because of performance and stability. Nobody will respect a lousy software maker. The boot to Gecko project is ridiculed (look at the comments section of any site posting about boot to gecko) not because it is an unworthy project, it is because nobody trusts Mozilla to implement it properly. Please dedicate one year of development for bug fixing, performance and stability. Firefox 4 was supposed to do that, but got sidetracked with Panorama, UI refresh, Jetpack?? etc. Please go back to the roots and give us a browser worthy of its users.

  3. I don’t agree with the overall tone of mucinch’s comments, but I do with the most of the content.

    As a long time user and Mozilla supporter, I’m feeling as if the entire focus is on the wireless world when Firefox does have some serious issues, especially with user perception.

    I know that the number of people on handheld and other devices and sales for them are massive, and that they are the future, but they are not a replacement for the desktop browser. There are still many people here in the U.S. and even more so around the World that don’t even own a computer yet, and many with computers have either low quality, limited access and services, or no Internet connection at all.

    We are all in the tech field, and Mozilla has to look ahead and I want them to, and I’m psyched about Boot to Gecko more than I can describe, but if I’m seeing all of this, imagine what the average user feels when they’re still dealing with crashes, sick amounts of memory and resources usage (Fx is currently using 255k+ of memory), and their favorite add-ons no longer working.

    I’m just saying, Mozilla needs to be very tactful about this you know?
    It is possible for there to be too many changes at once.
    People need time to adjust to one before another, not be shocked by the massive shift of the poles. :)

  4. I am not a native speaker of English, so apologies if the post sounded harsh. I have immense respect for Mozilla, I have been using Firefox since version 1.0 and intend to keep using it for a long time. Thanks guys for making it happen.

  5. Don’t endorse closed ecosystems like iOS.

    Producing software for a closed platform doesn’t necessarily mean endorsing its user-choice-unfriendly closedness. Producing a Firefox browser for iOS is fighting against its closedness, not endorsing it.

    What is your plan? Ignore iOS altogether and hope people just stop using it? I guess there’s a non-zero chance of that working, but it doesn’t seem that likely to me.

  6. Submit a fully-featured Firefox mobile browser like on Android. If people really want an open web they will jailbreak their devices. Who knows, there could be another grassroot campaign against closed ecosystems. But like what happened with IE6, the browser needs to achieve atleast equal performance against the stock browser for it to gain traction.