Firefox snags a new look and healthy speed boost in major update

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As promised, it just released Firefox Quantum (aka Firefox 57) - and it promises to be much faster than you're used to. Early next year should also see the rollout of a new GPU-accelerated rendering engine. More importantly, Firefox Quantum is built to be faster and easier to use, an effort that could help Mozilla scrape back users it lost to rivals Google Chrome and Apple's Safari browser.

As well as focusing on speed, Mozilla has equipped Firefox Quantum with a new user interface called Photon.

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Those who already use Firefox should receive an automatic upgrade to Quantum after restarting their browser. The site for the new version also touts the updated browser's aggressive tracking protection and built-in ad- and script-blocking features.

Firefox Quantum often uses less memory than Chrome (~30 percent less using a Windows 10 PC). It all adds up to a once-in-a-decade overhaul which Mozilla claims will be "fast for good".

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You can check out Mozilla's tests here and technical background here.

"Firefox Quantum is over twice as fast as Firefox from 6 months ago, built on a completely overhauled core engine with brand new technology stolen from our advanced research group, and graced with a handsome new look created to get out of the way and let you do what you do best: surf a ton of pages, open a zillion tabs, all guilt free because Firefox Quantum uses less memory than the competition", boasts Mozilla senior vice president Mark Mayo. It's called Firefox Quantum, and it might give the web's most popular web browser a run for its money. It takes advantage of today's High DPI displays and other hardware across all the devices for better user experience. We call this initiative Photon, and its goal is to modernize and unify anything that we call Firefox while taking advantage of the speedy new engine. "You guessed it: the Photon UI itself is incredibly fast and smooth". The selected stories are chosen out of the millions of items users are saving to Pocket throughout the day, and becuase of this Mozilla says, "they do a great job of representing what's worth reading and watching on the web". "Our designers created a system that scales to more than just current hardware but lets us expand in the future". It also comes with integrations with read-it-later service, Pocket.

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