Firefox 3.1 Beta 2 released; adds robust Multi-Touch support for Macs only

Firefox 3.1 Beta 2 is the fourth development milestone and second beta release of Firefox 3.1, the next version of the Firefox web browser.

New features (for Mac OS X, Linux, and Windows) include:
• Private Browsing Mode
• Faster JavaScript engine
• Improved rendering
• Support for new web technologies

Arnold Kim reports for MacRumors, “But one feature unique to the Mac build is support for Apple’s multi-touch trackpad which has been shipping in notebooks since January of this year.”

Supported gestures are even more robust than Safari’s support and include:
(“Swipe” refers to 3-finger Swipe)

• Swipe Left: Go back in history (hold Cmd to open it in a tab)
• Swipe Right: Go forward in history
• Swipe Up: Go to the top of the page
• Swipe Down: Go to the end of the page
• Pinch Together: Zoom out
• Pinch Apart: Zoom in
• Twist Right: Next tab
• Twist Left: Previous tab

More info in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “IslandGirl” for the heads up.]


  1. Ratty,
    Download Webkit. It is the rendering engine for Safari and has solved all of those problems you describe. Safari’s version of Webkit is months behind. When you download Webkit and launch it, it will still say “Safari” in the menubar because only the rendering engine is Webkit. All the other bits are from the Safari frameworks. It looks identical to Safari except that the Dock icon has a gold rim around it.

  2. Is Mozilla the first third-party developer to support Multi-Touch? Apple has at least an 18-month head start over MS with Multi-Touch and it seems it’s being wasted …

  3. Meh. Sorry, but Safari is fine for me. Firefox just seems like a “hacker’s” browser — it concentrates on features features features features features and uber-customizability and less on the simple browsing experience.

    Here’s an example: Why the hell does Firefox insist on opening up its initial window fullscreen? That’s just retarded. I didn’t buy a big monitor to have one app blot the whole thing out. Oh sure, knowing Firefox, there’s probably one of its umpteen zillion settings I could turn off to fix that, but why should I have to?

    I have Firefox, keep it up to date, and use it for a few sites. But I could never imagine using it as my primary browser. Safari is just so much more of a simpler, cleaner experience.


  4. Ratty,
    It is an application. Drop it into your app folder and launch it. Like I said before, it will launch as Safari (in the menu bar) but will have a Safari icon with a gold rim around it.

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