Mozilla pivots towards AI future as Firefox market share declines

Alfonso Maruccia

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In a nutshell: Mozilla is seemingly on a journey to change the internet again, but it will not get there with Firefox. The open-source browser is barely mentioned throughout the company's latest corporate manifesto, where AI algorithms have become the real focus of the show.

In the recently published State of Mozilla for 2023, the open-source foundation made some bold statements about its plans for the future. The organization aims to build a better internet "by the people, for the people," countering the overwhelming influence of Big Tech corporations with open data and AI services.

The updated State of Mozilla is essentially designed to be a company manifesto written in corporate lingo but it also comes with the latest financial statements related to 2022 results, providing some interesting food for thought about how and where the organization is spending its money.

Mozilla's CEO, Mitchell Baker, received a substantial compensation increase, as stated in the document, going from $5,591,406 (2021) to $6,903,089 in 2022. Baker mentioned that the organization is clearly moving in the right direction but needs to do more and have a larger impact on the market.

While the CEO is raking in millions of dollars for her "vision," Mozilla's overall results have actually dropped between 2021 and 2022. Total revenues went from $600 million to $593 million, the foundation noted. The Firefox browser, which continues to be Mozilla's main offering to internet users, experienced a substantial market share decline during the same timeframe, dropping from 3.79 percent (2021) to 3.04 percent (2022).

Mozilla's CEO is being paid a lot more while Firefox keeps losing users, and someone has suggested that the organization's plan is now to fully transition away from the open-source browser. Mozilla is increasing its pile of financial assets, and Baker has clearly stated that the organization is ready to make "difficult choices" when it comes to shutting down unprofitable projects.

So, what future is Mozilla trying to build for itself and internet users? The foundation is pushing the idea of a trustworthy AI, improved ML algorithms with rich data, and privacy prioritization. Mozilla still wants to put people ahead of profit, the company's CEO said, but also take more risks and move quickly in the growing AI market.

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I didn't used to like FF back in the day, I had stability issues with it but now it has been solid as a rock. I switched to FF about 3-4 years ago primarily to use UBlock Origin extension and block YouTube ads. I'd have no issue paying for FF and uBlock if it was a reasonable cost but meant this service will online get better and stronger. I'd also have no issue paying YT either if they didn't shadow-ban the crap out of my comments, which have been perfectly respectful but don't align with YT's political agenda.

This CEO seems quite greedy, and quite happy about it. I hope this changes but FF will probably eventually get abandoned if it can't make them money.
 
I didn't used to like FF back in the day, I had stability issues with it but now it has been solid as a rock. I switched to FF about 3-4 years ago primarily to use UBlock Origin extension and block YouTube ads. I'd have no issue paying for FF and uBlock if it was a reasonable cost but meant this service will online get better and stronger. I'd also have no issue paying YT either if they didn't shadow-ban the crap out of my comments, which have been perfectly respectful but don't align with YT's political agenda.

This CEO seems quite greedy, and quite happy about it. I hope this changes but FF will probably eventually get abandoned if it can't make them money.
They wont ditch it so long as they are paid to maintain it be google as controlled opposition. Last thing google wants is a monopoly charge from the EU.
One reason I like using Firefox is that it is one browser that I can use on Linux and android that also has top tear adblocking and works as a password manager across all my devices.
Brave browser does that and is way snappier on android VS firefox.
 
Brave browser does that and is way snappier on android VS firefox.
I don't have any issue on my s21+ or my galaxy tab s8. I've heard good things about brave browser but haven't had much experience with it because when I switched from Chrome I went to FireFox and stopped. I'll give Brave amd honest try, though. You aren't the first person to sing it's praises to me
 
One reason I like using Firefox is that it is one browser that I can use on Linux and android that also has top tear adblocking and works as a password manager across all my devices.
I do the same, albeit on Windows and Android. Although I use Bitwarden for passwords, the bookmark sync between PC and mobile is great. And yes, uBlock Origin is a must-have.
 
I stopped using Firefox a while back because I could not get over the lack of the ability to set keyboard shortcuts.
I invested so much time in customizing Firefox, setting flags, interface CSS, finding the best add-ons, and I overlooked many annoyances, but the lack of this basic functionality made me switch entirely to a Chromium-based browser (now Ungoogled Chromium). I think the Firefox team should dedicate half their energy to improving accessibility and usability, and the fact that it keeps losing market share is an indication that this is indeed a major reason behind this.


 
This is terrible news. I suppose Firefox is open source so when Mozilla collapses, a community of open source developers can keep it going.
 
I do the same, albeit on Windows and Android. Although I use Bitwarden for passwords, the bookmark sync between PC and mobile is great. And yes, uBlock Origin is a must-have.
UBlock Origin is a massive must have for me. I've never used an adblocker that works better. I even see anti-adblockers get beaten by them frequently in under 12 hours where as other adblockers spend days trying to beat anti-adblock measures.

Frankly, I think Google has stopped trying to combat uBlock because they're just that fast and good. If anything, Google's aggressive anti-adblock measures have drawn enormous attention to uBlock
 
It's a testament to human stupidity why FF usage is so low and garbage like Chrome reigns supreme. AI won't improve FF usage. FF will disappear one day and Mozillla will sell AI tools.
 
I have used Firefox since it was called Phoenix, but I really dislike how it has been completely broken on Facebook and Instagram for almost two years now, with no fix in sight. The real problem is probably with bad/incompliant JavaScript code from Meta, but that doesn't really matter for end users who only care about their experience being broken with Firefox and not with Chrome/Edge/others.

The problem with Firefox on FB/IG is that after scrolling down a few screens, entries start to jump around, making it impossible to read anything. Scroll down 10 screens, then up two to read an entry that you had scrolled by, then every second the whole thing will scroll up a screen, making you hunt for the post for several seconds until it has settled. What I imagine happens is that after scrolling down, they expire posts at the top to save memory. When that happens, Firefox scrolls up the height of the removed entries, while Chrome/Edge/Opera/Vivaldi/Brave/etc stay put where they are.

I really want to recommend Firefox to people, but I can't, because most people I know use Facebook or Instagram and the Firefox experience there for the past two years is just horrible.
 
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