Mozilla Promises Firefox Mobile For Symbian Platform By 2009

Mozilla is all set to roll out a mobile version of its Firefox web-browser for the Symbian platform, which currently powers mobile phones from Nokia, Sony Ericsson, and Samsung, by the second quarter of next year, according to a blog post from Christian Sejersen, Mozilla’s director of mobile engineering.

Tagged as “Fennec”, the browser will use the same technology as the desktop version of Firefox, including the enhanced HTML rendering engine termed as Gekko.

Sejersen indicated the development of Fennec browser for Symbian platform through his blog post by saying, “In Q3 2008 Symbian had 49.8% of the total smartphone sales (and 57% in Q2), according to Gartner, compared to 11.1% for Windows Mobile and 7.2% for Linux”, and thereby stated the need to develop browser for Symbian platform, to snare substantial share in smartphone space.

Fennec browser is already available on Windows Mobile platform and Nokia 810 Internet tablet, but as Symbian powers majority of handsets, an efficient browser for Symbian will help Mozilla in bolstering its presence in smartphone arena.

The new mobile web browser from Mozilla will sport touch support, and it will be fully equipped to support JavaScript and Ajax.

Describing the development outlay, Sejersen notified that Symbian version of the browser is divided into five phases, with fully-featured browser is expected to be available by the end of April 2009.

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Our Comments

Firefox will finally come to Symbian after so long. The Mozilla foundation has been ignoring the biggest mobile platform for too long; this has allowed Opera mobile to corner the market and has given hopes to Google and Microsoft. Could they possibly grab 20 percent of the mobile market?

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