Firefox 46 Hits Android With Bandwidth and Security Updates

While the majority of users out there will no doubt be fixed to Google Chrome, there are of course other options out there - both on the Desktop as well as on Android - and Firefox continues to be one of the more mature and fully-featured options. For a long time now, the Firefox team has been introducing updates to their browser in quicker increments, leading to more versions of the device each year, not unlike Chrome itself. Mozilla has recently updated Firefox to versions 47 on the Desktop and version 46 on Android, which comes with a number of small, yet helpful, changes.

An interesting change here is that version 46 of Firefox for Android entirely gets rid of support for Android 2.3 Gingerbread, which really shouldn't be in use by a lot of people these days. It also brings with it security changes in the form of PBKDF2 supporting SHA2 hashes as well as RSA-PSS signature support, but a more user-facing change in this regard would be the removal of favicons in the URL bar to ensure that HTTPS spoofing doesn't happen. On the bandwidth side of things, Mozilla has added the option to hide or show web fonts to squeeze a little more bandwidth out of your connection and save on that data cap as well. On top of this, Firefox will now put a stop to web pages running in the background taking up more of your data, as once the Firefox app is in the background, sites can no longer meta refresh or continue to load.

These are small changes overall, but many of them will be nice and helpful to users looking to get more out of their devices and use less data. Shedding support for a near-ancient version of Android could also allow the team to work on more advanced versions of the browser that require more up-to-date technologies in Android itself. If you've yet to give Firefox a try on Android, users can go ahead and give it a try by tapping the Play Store link down below. With tab sync available with the Desktop version of Firefox, this might end up being as good as Chrome depending on what you need in a mobile browser.

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About the Author
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Tom Dawson

Former Editor-in-Chief
For years now I've had a heavy interest in technology, growing up with 8-bit computers and gaming consoles has fed into an addiction to everything that beeps. Android saved me from the boredom of iOS years ago and I love watching the platform grow. As an avid reader and writer nothing pleases me more than to write about the exciting world of Android, Google and mobile technology as a whole.
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