Mozilla today announced the biggest update for its web browser, Firefox. Now known as Firefox Quantum, Mozilla says that it’s “over twice as fast as Firefox from 6 months ago”. Firefox Quantum comes with a new layout, new features and is also optimized to consume less memory. The most surprising element in the launch of Firefox Quantum is, however, the integration of Google as the default search engine and not Yahoo.
Google had been Firefox’s default search engine since 2004, but back in 2014 Yahoo joined in. Although Google along with other search engines was built-in on Firefox, Yahoo became the default search engine. This deal was made after Yahoo paid over $300 million (approximately Rs 30 crores) a year, which was more than what Google offered to pay. However, now Google will be the default search engine for Firefox in the US, Canada, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Mozilla in a blog post says that the decision is part of the company’s ongoing search strategy announced in 2014. This online search strategy is “to evaluate and select the best search experience in each strategy in each region as opposed to having a single global default”.
With the new deal between Mozilla and Google, Yahoo isn’t happy with the change. Charles Stewart from Verizon (Yahoo’s new owner) was quoted by Bloomberg as saying, “Yahoo and Mozilla have enjoyed a productive relationship together since 2014. We are surprised that Mozilla has decided to take another path and we are in discussions with them regarding the terms of our agreement.” As of now, it is still unknown how much Google has offered to pay Mozilla for the search engine position. ALSO READ: Mozilla Firefox 55 unveiled with support for VR, thousand tabs and faster search
Interestingly, Mozilla pits the new Firefox Quantum to be more than two times faster while using 30 percent less memory than Chrome. Primarily focusing on the speed, Mozilla says that it will eliminate the “Wait Face” that appears due to pages not loading, and videos not streaming. ALSO READ: Mozilla launches Firefox Focus, a ‘private’ browser for iOS