Tony Edwards
Switching to Firefox

Switching to Firefox

- 1 min

At this moment in time, my third switch to the Firefox web browser is underway. Recent changes in both the organisations focus and browser development are once again making it a compelling choice of window into the web.

The first switch came during the noughties browser wars. Internet Explorer had a strangle hold on the market, brought about by its inclusion as the default choice within windows. At the time, Firefox felt like a breath of fresh air, and its open source nature and heritage gave many of us inhabiting the web confidence. It also scored really well on the acid test, which was similarly reassuring to my fellow web masters.

This stuck until Chrome started making waves. The promise of a fast and stable browser with an accompanying open source engine was welcomed.

The second admittedly half hearted switch came during uni in the mid 20-teens. With more time spent developing front ends, the browser tools were handy when cross-browser testing. It didn’t stick, but stayed installed and fired up occasionally for a touch of testing.

The third, but undoubtedly not final, switch is underway. It’s been a gradual move over, starting on mobile as an effort to increase privacy. As a consequence, ads are reduced and speed is increased. The uptick in travel corresponds with a decrease in connectivity whilst moving through a rural area. There’s only so much JS a shaky 3g connection can handle.

The ad blocker is a staple of the modern web for anyone in the know. Moves by Apple, similarly large companies an even governments are shining an increasingly bright spotlight on user data and the privacy of it. The result is a gradual restriction on the privacy invasive methods. As a user,it’s just nice to have the relatively ad free experience available via my mobile phone. The privacy benefits simply come along with it.

After a month of using Firefox as a daily browser, I absent mindedly opened Chrome to browse some F1 news. The adverts were almost overwhelming, and I quickly became convinced that the choice to switch was the right one.

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