Mozilla went back to the drawing board and has delivered the biggest update to its Firefox web browser since its initial launch in 2004. What does that mean in practical terms? First, the browser eats up less memory—no longer will you have to deal with your computer crawling to a halt because you've left 23 tabs open. (You'll only have to deal with your coworkers' incredulous looks, but that's doable.)
Second, Firefox Quantum is fast. According to Mozilla, It's twice as fast as the Firefox experience you may have encountered just six months prior. Additionally, Google is now the browser's default search engine—goodbye, Yahoooooo!—and the company has outfitted Firefox with a brand-new UI, dubbed "Photon."
"The first thing you’ll notice is the speed. Go on, open some tabs and have some fun. The second thing you’ll notice is the new User Interface (UI). We call this initiative Photon, and its goal is to modernize and unify anything that we call Firefox while taking advantage of the speedy new engine. You guessed it: the Photon UI itself is incredibly fast and smooth," reads Mozilla's blog post.
"To create Photon, our user research team studied how people browsed the web. We looked at real world hardware to make Firefox look great on any display, and we made sure that Firefox looks and works like Firefox regardless of the device you’re using. Our designers created a system that scales to more than just current hardware but lets us expand in the future. Plus, our Pocket integration goes one step further, which includes Pocket recommendations alongside your most visited pages."
You should definitely upgrade to Firefox Quantum if you're using an older version of the browser. That's a no-brainer. However, if you're a big fan of Google Chrome, the decision gets a little trickier. Check out these early impressions of Firefox Quantum to see how the browser stacks up against its big rival:
Mozilla for the win: Backyard I.T
Backyard I.T: "I'm very impressed. Kudos to Mozilla again for an excellent web browser."
Mozilla for the loss: DB Tech Reviews
DB Tech Reviews: "After having looked at these over the course of the last five or six minutes, and comparing memory usage, video quality, things like that, I'm kind of surprised that with all of Firefox's big claims, I'm actually seeing better results in Chrome.