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Mozilla won't submit a Firefox browser to Apple's iPhone App Store. It has no intention of taking its browser where "it's not wanted." But the open source outfit is developing an iPhone incarnation of Firefox Sync, the browser bookmark-syncing service formerly known as Weave. Mozilla has been exploring such a project for months …

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clever

I like the plan - submit lots of clearly half-featured stuff

"And this means you can't synchronize what you do on the phone with your desktop Firefox. Firefox Sync lets you synchronize data across multiple devices, but Firefox Home is strictly a one-way affair."

all Job's proles will see that his silly ideas get them the lesser end of really good.

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The Great Wall of Apple

Apple is the abusive partner in a bad relationship. Instead of leaving apple, the other partner makes excuses, enabling apple to become even more abusive.

Apple are obviously pleased with themselves, with customers lining up at their feet. Still, even they must be surprised at how willing their users are to give into their monarchist model. That users don't revolt is a serious testimony to their loyalty for apple. I find it ironic though, that a free people, who claim to value choice and democracy for everyone, should spend their own hard earned money to support a walled garden under dictator control. I suppose people deserve whatever they want to pay for.

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You don't get to make my decisions, and you don't get to judge them either

That's a free society, not the one you paint. Epic fail.

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RE: The Great Wall of Apple

"Apple is the abusive partner in a bad relationship. Instead of leaving apple, the other partner makes excuses, enabling apple to become even more abusive."

The other partner *is* making excuses. Not to cover Apple but just FUD. Everyone else who have developed browsers have managed to do it without need to run interpreted code. Why are Firefox different?

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Maybe...

Maybe Opera can afford to have every single iphone/opera request run through one of its own servers for pre-crunching before sending to the phone, and Mozilla either can't or can't be bothered?

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WTF?

I don't get it

...with all the people here complaining that Apple have a set of rules for their device.

Microsoft won't let you futz with the Xbox 360. If you do, you're banned from Live.

Sony limit what you do with a PS3. Can't even run Linux on it anymore.

Nintendo have the Wii locked down.

I can't unlock my blu-ray dvd player so it plays Region 2 dvd's (original dvd's, not br ones)

What's the difference? Apple have a set of guidelines for what they will and will not allow on the device they created and spent millions of dollars and man-hours on developing. I know Apple can change the rules and apply them arbitrarily, but you know what, that's their prerogative. They created it, they can do what they want with it. At least I know that when I download something from the App store it will work on any new device I get and it probably won't crash or cause other issues. Stop complaining people.

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Well..

I don't think there's as much complaint about the games consoles (though, see the rants about the PS3's recently remotely reduced functionality) because they are basically toys. One would presume a tablet computer is a little more than a toy, as is its smaller MDA (remember that term, before people thought of 'smartphone?') brethren.

As for why a lot of people think it's wrong for Apple to be able to deliberately brick their very expensive device by remote control for daring to do something against some authoritarian user policy, well see "very expensive" for details. I don't give a shit how much they spent on R&D. If I buy an ipad, it's my ipad. Not Steve's.

And turning the content creation side into a monopolised app store with a 30% premium? Ebay doesn't charge that much! And then adding insult to injury by saying I need to get heavily invested in Apple hardware and learning experience before I'm deigned to be fit to develop for the holy iChurch? Fuck you, Apple. There's a robot next door who doesn't care how an application is made so long as it works.

(also, I'm not touching blu-ray until drives are £30 from China and come with multiregion capabilities).

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Crazy

@Phil Rigby so if you bought a TV you wouldn't be annoyed if 2 months later the manufacturer decided you could only watch TV programmes that they approved of?

Or maybe decided that they didn't like you watching DVDs that weren't purchased from them.

All of this decided after they sold it to you?

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Right premise, wrong conclusion

Yes all of those are equally rotten. But it does not logically follow that we should stop complaining about the iPhone. Maybe we should complain more about the others. Yeah "they created it", and then they *sold it*. Normally it is understood that you relinquish your "do what you want with it" rights when something is no longer your property, see?

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Hear! Hear!

Sorry, but I agree with Phil!

Don't like Apple kit, don't buy it! However having said that, please complain as it makes others aware of the short comings of a device and with any luck people with any sense will avoid it. We need the reviews and the pros and cons. The ad men will feed us the BS and gives the pros, the reviewers will give us the cons.

When I recently wanted a new lens for my camera, I spent about 4 weeks looking at specs to decide what I wanted. I checked the most expensive to the cheapest, I read all the reviews on my short list of candidates. I read the stuff until I was sick and tired of looking these damn things. Then I went to a reputable camera dealer ( took 3 days of reviews to find that too! ) and I spent nearly 2 hours making sure I was happy as I was about to spend, to me anyway, a lot of money. In the end I got the almost perfect fit for my needs and budget and I am very, very pleased with it.

I spent time making sure the thing I wanted, did what I wanted it to do! I didn't not just go to Amazon, click the first advert and buy it. I did not just buy one 'cos all my mates had one. When it was not the wonder gadget the ad men said it would be, spend the rest of the gadget's life moaning about how crap it is!

I spent time researching to make sure I was happy to hand my hard-earned money over. If it's crap, then it's entirely my fault and no one else is to blame if I wasted my money or time, but at least I made sure first.

Making sure it's what you really want, something that seems to be a dying art these days.

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Anonymous Coward

Office of Fair Trading

If people want to complain about the imposed limitations to what you can do with a device you bought and own, then send letters, emails, etc to Office of Fair Trading or to the EU.

If the Tech Companies say you don't own the device, then you should be to send it back at the end of it's life and ask for a refund.

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@Phil: I don't get it

The examples you have given are either games consoles or appliance electronics (in the case of blu-ray). They are designed for a single purpose, and subsidised by the manufacturer (in the case of games consoles), with a levy on the software supporting this subsidisation.

The iPhone is not subsidised by Apple (in the UK it is usually subsidised by the supplying Network provider, again supported by income from your monthly contract), and is designed to run applications. It is pushed as a device that "has an app for that". However, if "that" does not fit in with Apples view of how the iPhone should be, it simply will not be approved.

How many other "smart" phone platforms can you mention where the owner of the device is not the one to say what applications they can use on it?

How many other computer platforms (and we have been repeatedly told that a smart phone is a portable computing device) can you mention where the owner of the device is not the one to say what applications they can use on it?

Now do you begin to understand?

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@M Gale

Why must you shackle the iPad to previous devices? It's like there are a finite set of labels and you've got to put this device in a category that already exists. If you stop doing that you might see it's a different type of device.

The comment about bricking - what are you talking about? Are you talking about phones and getting bricked because you've broken the contract with your carrier? Apple don't brick devices, but if you jailbreak it might undo what you've done.

As for your comment about 30%, you might want to look into channel sales. This isn't a lot of money, many stores charge much more, and the best thing about this store is that there is only one, and that means everyone shops there.

If you buy an iPad, go ahead, jail break it - that's your right, it's your device. Apple isn't going to remotely brick it, that's just nonsense.

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@Matt Hawkins

Really, really poor analogy.

It'd be more like you want to use the television to wash your clothes. Or perhaps you want to put a different tuner in it because the one you made in your garage allows you to pick up satellite illegally. You're still free to do either of those things, but at your risk and you void the warranty. That's your choice, it hasn't gone away.

Why you'd be so stupid to do any of those things, wouldn't it be easier to buy a device that did what you want it to do in the first place?

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RE: Well..

"I don't think there's as much complaint about the games consoles (though, see the rants about the PS3's recently remotely reduced functionality) because they are basically toys."

Toys you were once able to run Linux on. What does that make them - a little bit different from Playmobil and Hula-Hoops! Maybe you know someone who runs Linux in their Barbie house?

"And turning the content creation side into a monopolised app store with a 30% premium?"

You can get free apps. 30% of nothing is still nothing.

"And then adding insult to injury by saying I need to get heavily invested in Apple hardware and learning experience before I'm deigned to be fit to develop for the holy iChurch?"

Erm, no. You need a mac/hackintosh and a copy of the development suite. You also need to know C/C++ or Java. That is all. It turns out you can get the computer *and* dev pack for less than Visual Studio 2010 (currently £483 on Amazon).

"(also, I'm not touching blu-ray until drives are £30 from China and come with multiregion capabilities)."

Yep. Bang on topic for a comment on an article about web browsers.

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RE: @Phil: I don't get it

"The examples you have given are either games consoles or appliance electronics (in the case of blu-ray). They are designed for a single purpose..."

A PS3 is quite evidently a computer. It can run complex code (even Linux).

Phones are of course multi-purpose. Mine can drive my car, video my favourite TV shows and go shopping for me.

Oh wait, last I looked it could text, call, access the internet. That's essentially all I need it to do...

"How many other computer platforms (and we have been repeatedly told that a smart phone is a portable computing device) can you mention where the owner of the device is not the one to say what applications they can use on it?"

The average iPhone user does goet to choose what applications they use on it - they choose them from the iPhone store. Not every application gets allowed on to the store but that's the same in every shop. Tesco don't sell massive dildos, do they?

If Apple can vet every application before it is allowed on the store then that is one good way of keeping the platform virus and malware free.

Now do you begin to understand?

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RE: Hear! Hear!

"Don't like Apple kit, don't buy it! However having said that, please complain as it makes others aware of the short comings of a device and with any luck people with any sense will avoid it."

Sometimes people post comments berating something they know little about. That seems to be the case with the iPhone. Based upon the number of commentards who dislike it, there should be hundreds of thousands of people dumping their iPhones. The thing is - that isn't happening, a few very vocal people who don't have iPhones want to slag them off...

"We need the reviews and the pros and cons. The ad men will feed us the BS and gives the pros, the reviewers will give us the cons."

Reviewers might. Commentards on El Reg rarely do. If Steve Jobs or Bill Gates invented a device to cure cancer, we'd still get negative comments made about them and their new product...

It's all getting really rather tiresome.

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@AC re: OFT

First, however, lodge a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights regarding censorship, because that argument is just as solid as going to the OFT.

They do not say you cannot do what you want with it, except regarding the phone contract, which all phones on contracts restrict (and you risk having it bricked).

What you will do is void your warranty. What you will also do if you jail break it is potentially lose all your changes, so you'll have to jail break it again.

There is no foul here to cry.

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Coat

"Maybe you know someone who runs Linux in their Barbie house?"

No, but I'd be willing to bet that OpenBSD has been ported to it, that ran on anything...

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iPad is different

The iPad is much closer to Jeff Raskin's definition of an 'information appliance' than the PC on your desk. The rules have changed, but it's hardly like Apple didn't announce loud and clear, 'buy an iPad, play by our rules'.

For a huge number of people, the idea of a computer they can pick up and use without worrying about labyrinthine interfaces or bastardly installations or keeping their security up to date is a dream. The iPad overcomes most of the problems of owning a PC - as the slogan goes - it just works. Apple control the hardware and distribution of software so you won't get the range found on a PC; but in exchange you get a generally better level of usability and stability over the mix-and-match install-what-you-like PC.

It's the way of the future, better get used to it. Every manufacturer is looking at the same model - think Gillette's razor blades - they tie you into the platform and then make money selling you disposable extras - except this time Apple have found a way of making the hardware profitable.

As for complaints to the OFT - on what grounds? The introduction of the iPad hasn't resulted in every other computer ceasing to work, you can still go and buy alternative machines.

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@AC re: re:@Phil

"Tesco don't sell massive dildos, do they?" Do they sell small ones? Sorry, couldn't resist.

Great post, btw.

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Coat

What's the difference?

Firstly, all those restrictions are bad. I oppose all of them. Having said that on a gaming console which was never meant to run anything else but DRM'ed games (the Sony PS3 is an exception here), that is somewhat more acceptable. Still bad, but more acceptable.

The iPhone or iPad is a mobile computing device and what this means is subject to interpretation. I interpret it as being a mobile computer that I should have full freedom use as I see fit.

IMHO, that means I should be able to easily write and run any arbitrary code on it. Given an iphone is meant to be a personal device, if I bought one I would be doing at least some of my daily computing on it. The ability to run arbitrary code as desired is TO BE EXPECTED. IMHO you should not have to go thru' some convoluted process, pay apple more money, and still have a hobbled means of customising your kit.

This is absolutely LAME. What are apple going to do next? DRM OS X apps?

This is why, despite the wonderful GUI the iPhone has I have boycotted it.

I vote with my feet.

(as an aside, I am also boycotting the PS3).

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Title required

"Why must you shackle the iPad to previous devices? It's like there are a finite set of labels and you've got to put this device in a category that already exists. If you stop doing that you might see it's a different type of device."

It's a tablet computer, despite what the Cult of Jobs says. It is not a "different type of device" by any stretch of the imagination, unless you include the lock-down and the lack of a keyboard. Or USB port. Or SD card slot. Or multitasking. Or..

"The comment about bricking - what are you talking about? Are you talking about phones and getting bricked because you've broken the contract with your carrier? Apple don't brick devices, but if you jailbreak it might undo what you've done."

My apologies, they only used to brick devices. Now they wipe your machine and undo the jailbreak. Funny though, I can install Linux on my PC and still get warranty support if the hardware fails. Oh, and reinstall Windows if for some bizarre reason I felt masochistic enough. Or I could dual-boot. And still get Windows updates. Why? Because it's a computer. Just like an ipad.

"As for your comment about 30%, you might want to look into channel sales. This isn't a lot of money, many stores charge much more, and the best thing about this store is that there is only one, and that means everyone shops there."

30% is an absolute boatload. There only being one place where you can sell or buy apps is not a good thing. It's what will keep that ridiculous 30% overhead in place.

I'm hopefully going to be doing a computer games technology degree soon. I'm considering mobile and "embedded" devices to make some cheapy games with. Guess what platform I won't be developing for?

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that's the same in every shop

"Tesco don't sell massive dildos, do they?" No, but I'm sure I could find several down town that would be happy to sell me any size dildo I wanted, I expect there are lots of online stores that would too.

I'm not limited to Tesco, I can shop where I want.

And if I started making massive dildos I would not be limited to selling them at Tesco.

You think Apple is locking up the store just to protect you (because you can't protect your self)?

All they would need to do is give a warning when you install a non approved app. Something like...

'this app has not been approved by Apple, it may rape your mother, and kill your cat. You should only install approved apps if you want to be kept safe and happy by your friends at Apple' Continue?

That way people would not need to jailbreak their phones if they want to install a program that Apple will not approve of (like a wifi scanner for example).

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Now ask yourself....

Now ask yourself, why exactly is it that Apple does not want people who have bought iPhones or iPads to use Firefox? What exactly would be so awful about that?

Apple should merge with Microsoft. It would make a lot of sense. It would be a bit like the Hitler - Stalin pact, which also made a lot of sense, two mad totalitarians getting together. Go for it guys!

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WTF?

When your position lacks substance trot out the Hitler reference.

There is no Firefox app that has been submitted. Opera was submitted and approved. If Firefox want to build an app for the iDevice, they are welcome to do so.

Stop crying foul where none exists.

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RE: Now ask yourself....

"Now ask yourself, why exactly is it that Apple does not want people who have bought iPhones or iPads to use Firefox?"

Apple doesn't care.

Apparently, Firefox can't browse the net without running interpreted code. That sounds like a bag of shit to me but that's what Firefox are claiming.

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@Cody

Comparing someone you don't like to Hitler is a pretty low form of argument it eventually becomes inevitable though, it seems.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_Hitlerum

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin%27s_law

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Re: AC - RE: Now ask yourself....

Since a web browser is interpreting HTML and probably JavaScript, it does fall under the rules unless you can take the actual web page reading part of it off the device, quite obviously.

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Not really accurate

@AC - Re: Re: Now ask your self...

>> "Since a web browser is interpreting HTML and probably JavaScript, it does fall under the rules[...]"

That is not really accurate. HTML is not "interpreted", it is rendered, much like a PDF or any other marked-up document. JavaScript is "interpreted" because it needs to execute within a specific context, and not as a native, independent application.

Apple does not prohibit Web browsers on the App Store. It does require any HTML rendering to be done using its own API (which is the same Safari uses, being WebKit) and any JavaScript execution must also be done through its own API (again, provided by the WebKit framework, the same one used by Safari).

There are many other browsers available for the iPhone, and they work quite well, but they are made within these constraints. Mozilla is free to develop a browser and submit it to the App Store, one that offers the many features Firefox provides which Safari does not. However, this browser must not depend on its own JavaScript nor HTML rendering engines; it must use the iPhone SDK APIs for these functions.

It is reasonable and understandable that Mozilla does not agree with this restrictions (given that they produce their own respective engines). It is not very reasonable for them to claim that they were prevented from accessing the App Store for the mere fact of begin Mozilla and/or Open Source. They have the same access as everyone else.

-dZ.

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@DZ-Jay

"Apple does not prohibit Web browsers on the App Store. It does require any HTML rendering to be done using its own API (which is the same Safari uses, being WebKit) and any JavaScript execution must also be done through its own API (again, provided by the WebKit framework, the same one used by Safari)."

Even assuming that's all true, it entirely misses the point.

Taking an existing browser, and then changing the "skin" to make it say "Firefox" is not the same as actually running firefox. Ignoring that, assuming the other browsers did just that, there is very little they can do to improve the browser now that it's running safari's back end.

Hypothetically, lets say safari fails some html5 test cases, and one would expect firefox or opera to work like they do on all other platforms, except they cannot because they're just shells around safari.

Another more serious example, firefox is likely to support ogg/theora on all platforms potentially offering a very significant benefit to end users. When it comes to the ipad version, they'll have to say the feature isn't supported since apple decided not to support it in safari.

Another example, firefox on the ipad would probably not be able to support standard plugins such as adblock, greasemonkey. This would be a major setback for the mozilla project on this platform.

In the end, users would blame mozilla for a shoddy/undifferentiated experience on the ipad, when in fact apple is the real culprit. Mozilla's decision was to have no browser on the ipad rather than one with apple pulling the string. Can you imagine how bad the situation would be if every device manufacturer acted the same way as apple?

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@Lou Gosselin

>> "Taking an existing browser, and then changing the "skin" to make it say "Firefox" is not the same as actually running firefox."

Ah, but it *does*. A browser is much more than a "skin", and much more than its "engine". A browser is the encompassing client, its UI, and all the stuff in it--including the engine.

Are you going to claim then that, say, Chrome, Safari and KDE are the same browser with multiple "skins"? They all use WebKit. What about Camino and Firefox, are they equal? They both use Gecko.

>> "there is very little they can do to improve the browser now that it's running safari's back end."

There is plenty they can do to improve it. For example, Safari has a very stupid and binary Cookie Manager. Firefox's has a more granular Manager which allows users to control which sites are allowed cookies. Likewise, Safari on the iPhone/iPad allow the use of tabs in a very minimal way. A different browser could offer a more rounded approach, allowing for comprehensive multi-tab browsing. Safari also lacks any way to block advertisements or to add such a feature.

Furthermore, there is no reason that an "Extension" framework could not be created. Granted, the current architecture in Firefox may not translate directly to one for the iPhone, but it could certainly be done. Extensions are JavaScript modules, and there is no restrictions on downloading an executing these, just as long as they are executed using the API available. There are some limitations, due to the sand-boxed approach of iPhone Apps, but it is possible to offer third-party extensibility.

The point is that the reason some people may use Chrome over Firefox, is *not* because of a preference of WebKit vs. Gecko, or vice-versa; it is much less dependent on the quality of rendering, and more on available functionality and user interface.

-dZ.

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Jobs Horns

All in all...

...it's just another brick in the wall.

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Megaphone

More like...

With your empty smile

And your hungry heart

Feel the bile rising from your guilty past

You better run like hell!

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WTF?

I have a sensible question

Since you've all been so busy Apple bashing, I suppose I'll have to be the one to ask the question:

Why are Firefox not developing a browser? Why does their browser *need* to interpret code. Opera, Google and Safari have all managed to do without any code interpretation, why is Firefox different?

"Apple has made it very clear in their public statement and their license agreement that it is not permitted to build - not just to host at the App Store, but to build - any program that can interpret code," Dotzler says. "If you agree to their SDK, you cannot build another browser."

Excep, as I previously mentioned, there are at least 2 browsers apart from Safari already out there..!

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Re: I have a sensible question

It's quite simple: a straw man.

While the rest of the planet considers a "Web Browser" to be an HTTP "user-agent" client, one that is capable of rendering HTML documents and execute JavaScript, Mozilla seems to imply that a Web Browser is the underlying architecture that actually performs these tasks, not the overall application itself.

You see, for the rest of the world, Chrome, Safari and KDE, for example, are different "Browsers", yet they all use the WebKit framework. Similarly, Camino, Firefox and SeaMonkey are different "Browsers", yet they all use the Gecko engine.

I suspect that even Mozilla would agree with this description, but for some reason they subvert it by implying that Firefox *is* Gecko, and that the two cannot be divorced. That when Apple requires any HTML rendering and JavaScript execution within an iPhone App to be done using their own API (which uses WebKit), this somehow means Apple is actively preventing Mozilla from adapting Firefox, or even creating any browser at all.

In essence, it is an argument exploiting the semantic use of the term Web Browser. It is artificial and disingenuous, and it amounts to no more than a straw man argument to detract from the actual issue: that, Gecko or WebKit, people do not seem to care too much how a Browser does its thing, as long as it does it right, and that the choice is much less philosophical than pragmatic. That people seem to be moving in flocks to mobile devices and that traditional desktop Web Browsers are not necessarily enough to hold them back; and that whatever features those traditional Browsers offer can be duplicated by others--transparently--even if using differing technology, or aren't significant enough to deter users from using a competing Browser.

In other words, that Web Browsers seem to be turning into a commodity product.

It is also fashionable as of late to hate and bash Apple, and Mozilla does not want to be left behind that chorus.

-dZ.

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@DZ-Jay

"While the rest of the planet considers a "Web Browser" to be an HTTP "user-agent" client, one that is capable of rendering HTML documents and execute JavaScript, Mozilla seems to imply that a Web Browser is the underlying architecture that actually performs these tasks, not the overall application itself."

Mozilla are far from the only ones disappointed with apple antics.

In any case, why should apple have any say as to what a browser can or cannot do? Instead of forcing corporate policy down their throats, let the users decide.

The fact is apple doesn't want anyone to build a better, more powerful, and open browser for the ipad, since powerful online apps could very well yield the app store redundant. Apple are smart, they foresaw this and took preemptive anti-competitive measures to shut down this vector.

I understand the typical consumer doesn't think or care about these things, but that's no reason for me personally not to. I'd rather embrace a platform which is open and embraces all innovation, even that of third parties.

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@Lou Gosselin

So, your argument now is that Apple is "forcing corporate policy down [Mozilla's] throat," while ignoring the most relevant parts of my post explaining why this is not so.

>> The fact is apple doesn't want anyone to build a better, more powerful, and open browser for the ipad, since powerful online apps could very well yield the app store redundant."

There are legitimate reasons why Apple does not want to allow third-party rendering engines to run within their device. Some of them have to do with controlling security and reducing the attack surface. Some of them are due to quality control (it *is* their device, after all).

But my bigger point is this: Would you agree that Google's Chrome is a different browser than Apple's Safari? If you grant this--which I would imagine any sane person would--then you must also grant that the underlying rendering engine is but a small part of the overall application that defines a Web Browser. Both of those browsers use the WebKit engine, yet they are considered vastly different applications, in implementation and philosophy.

Likewise, Apple is not *preventing* anybody from creating a browser for the iPhone. Anybody can (and some have), as long as they use the same underlying engine--which, again, is not the only defining and differentiating quality.

I understand that Mozilla won't do this, it is very reasonable. I do not accept with the premise that it is because Apple is singling them out from the crowd as a competitor, which is their allegation.

>> I understand the typical consumer doesn't think or care about these things, but that's no reason for me personally not to. I'd rather embrace a platform which is open and embraces all innovation, even that of third parties."

Agreed. We all have differing views and values, and you may not agree with mine. You want a more open platform, so then the iPhone nor the iPad are for you. However, this is a value judgement, and Apple is not forcing you nor anyone to make it.

-dZ.

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"Likewise, Apple is not *preventing* anybody

"Likewise, Apple is not *preventing* anybody from creating a browser for the iPhone. Anybody can (and some have), as long as they use the same underlying engine--which, again, is not the only defining and differentiating quality."

Except that your wrong. If any developer creates a proper browser on their own terms, apple will disallow it. Apple has disallowed apps for far lesser things.

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Re: "Likewise, Apple is not *preventing* anybody

You keep saying that I am wrong and that Apple "will disallow it," but this is merely a (very biased) assumption, and one that does not fit within experience. There *are* other browsers for the iPhone which offer different functionality than Safari, while still using the same WebKit framework, can't you understand that? Or do they not count without a recognized big brand name?

Contrary to what you may think, a Web Browser does *not* have to be branded with "Mozilla" or "Microsoft" or "Google", or any other big name; nor does it have to implement its own unique rendering engine.

As I said before, it is perfectly understandable why these organizations would not want to make a browser using WebKit for the iPhone, but to say that it is because Apple won't let them is false.

Making assumptions a priori that Apple won't let competing products in the iPhone without any basis on reality, and ignoring current experience is just gratuitous bashing based on personal biases. Just like when the Register insinuated that Apple may reject the Opera Mini browser, back when it was announced. Of course, its more fun to devise conspiracy theories than to just wait and see.

Mozilla cannot implement their own rendering engine or JavaScript runtime library for the iPhone, that is true for anybody. However, this is not the same as saying that they "cannot implement a browser".

-dZ.

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@DZ-Jay

You are still wrong, firefox is a browser, and apple's terms do not allow it to be ported to their mobile platforms. People like firefox, people want firefox on their iphone. Well too bad since apple will only accept a "third party browser" that is based on their own technology. Maybe you feel this is good enough, fine, but don't make false claims about apple letting competing (browser) products into the iphone, they are not. I dare say you know it too.

Like I said, why should apple (or you...) dictate what a browser is? Let the developers be innovative and let the users choose what they want.

Rationalizing with you is evidently not possible, it's seems very likely that you'd say anything at all to defend apple, but would suddenly change your argument for any other company pulling the same stunts.

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@Lou Gosselin

Lou,

On the iPhone, I use a browser called Atomic Browser, not Safari. It offers Ad-blocking, tabs, and a sort of other features lacking in Safari. This *is* a competing browser, I purchased it, and the developer makes money out of it, and it is different than Safari.

If you claim it is the same as Safari just because it uses WebKit, then you are also claiming that Chrome and Safari on the desktop are the same browser for the very same reasons. This is clearly not so. Why won't you address this point which is the one I've been making since my first post?

-dZ.

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@DZ-Jay

Just because it doesn't affect you personally, does not mean it doesn't affect others.

I don't care if there are a hundred browser front ends on the ipad running off of safari's engine, that's still a subset of viable browser technologies. That you continue to deny the restrictions on choice, competition, and alternatives is insane. The only way a knowledgeable person can adamantly deny the extreme restrictions apple puts in place must either be affiliated with apple, or must have a severe case of reality distortion.

I'm tired of this discussion, this is my last post.

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Linux

Or you if you already have an iPhone you could just....

Dual boot android on the iPhone (when it's finished and when the >= 2.0 version of android is available for it. 1.6 runs quite happily on iPhone 3G, just not so great at the moment with no power management.

Wonder what steve thinks of that... I'll love it when flash is running on the "iDroid".

Safari randomly quits itself on the iPhone for me, hopefully android + firefox will fix that, or some other browser.

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What a waste of resources

Why are Mozilla wasting themselves with this effort. They should be ploughing resources into and developing their own browser, not making excuses for people to jump to iPhone.

Where's the focus? Why bother with this distraction?

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Rob
Bronze badge
Flame

Apple = the AOL of devices

nuff said

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Blimey. A Cade Metz story...

Without the word "fanboi" in it about a bazillion times. Well done matey!

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Back to the Article, How does Firefox Home transfer the data?

I'm not Pro or anti Apple.

I just want to know how Firefox Home works. I know Google Toolbar remembers all my bookmarks by storing them in my Google account on their server, but how does the data for Firefox Home get from my computer to the iPhone?

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Welcome

Zen of users

"When one person suffers from a delusion, it is called insanity. When many people suffer from a delusion it is called a Religion."

— Robert M. Pirsig (Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values)

Clearly, there are two kinds of mobile users out there - those for whom it's just a tool to get things done and those for whom it's a religious/cultural/style exercise. That the former are willing to make or improve some of their tools makes them likely android users is fine with me. That there are hordes of the other kind is also fine with me.

My confusion is when the respective camps complain about each other's app model and control. It is what it is, folks - life is full of little choices, some of them hard.

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FAIL

Or you can just use Opera, it already syncs everything

Has done long before Mozilla ever decided to copy it...

http://www.opera.com/link/

How long will people carry on using inferior and bloated browsers like Firefox, when there are much better, faster and more compliant browsers like Opera around?

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