Mozilla is building Firefox Reality, a new cross-platform web browser for our virtual...

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,033   +150
Staff member

The Internet is largely accessed from computers, smartphones and tablets today but things could look very different in a decade. After all, just think back to where we were just 10 years ago – smartphones were only starting to permeate mainstream society, flatscreen televisions were still relatively rare and quite expensive and YouTube had been around for less than two years.

Mozilla believes the future will be heavily influenced by virtual / augmented / mixed reality and is building a new kind of web browser to cater to those use scenarios. It’s called Firefox Reality and is being designed to work on standalone VR / AR headsets.

In announcing the browser, Mozilla revealed a few key details such as the fact that it’ll be open-source and cross-platform. The foundation also committed to respecting users’ privacy, conceding that it doesn’t yet have all the answers for what privacy will look like in the new medium but promising to remain committed to finding the correct solution. We’re also told that Firefox Reality will be fast.

For all of its promises, there’s still a wealth of unknowns that need to be addressed in the coming years. How will you type in the virtual world? How will you express emotions or view the billions of existing 2D websites and new 3D content? How will the virtual world be mapped and who will control what you see?

It’s an exciting time, especially for those that have grown tired of existing experiences. From a design and interactive standpoint, everything will be new again with VR / AR… assuming of course that these technologies actually take root. Thus far, adoption hasn’t happened quite as fast as many predicted.

Permalink to story.



Posts: 4,073   +5,591
The true "Firefox reality" is that Mozilla has driven all its loyal users to other browsers. And nobody cares about VR. Nobody.


Posts: 893   +2,113
The true "Firefox reality" is that Mozilla has driven all its loyal users to other browsers. And nobody cares about VR. Nobody.

I care about VR. I also use Firefox. Sorry.
^ I use Firefox too but psycros has a point. I've been using Firefox since it was the "Mozilla Application Suite" (and before that Netscape Navigator during the Dark Ages of "webpage designed for IE6"). As soon as FF hit v4, they've consistently put their limited resources into all the wrong areas (ugly UI changes, removing fine-grained control of Javascript (eg, "generally allow Javascript per page but prevent scripts from blocking right-mouse clicks or obfuscating status bar links" (link)), during the same period they consistently lagged Chrome in speed and Acid3 compatibility. Dumb the browser down too much and make it "exactly like Chrome but slower" (complete with "version number p*ssing contest") = that transitioned more Firefox users to Chrome than it attracted Chrome users to Firefox (link...

Only recently have they finally put an effort into being something more than just "not Chrome", which is good as there are already very good "not Chrome" Chromium based browsers that do that (eg, Vivaldi). Same goes with Thunderbird (which for a simple lightweight multi-account POP3 email client, peaked at v2.0.0.24 for me...) What they need to do now is stop p*ssing about redesigning the UI every 3 weeks, ignore Chrome and gimmicks like "VR browsing" and refocus completely on security, blocking sites from background mining, disabling video autoplay in background tabs by default, maybe integrate Noscript or restore the previous available fine-grained Javascript control back into the browser, etc.
Last edited: