On Tuesday, June 20, seven months since its initial release for iOS users, Firefox Focus made its debut to the Google Play store for Android users.
Last year, the mobile app was created to help users protect their privacy and ultimately give them a simpler, faster, and more enjoyable browsing experience. Dissimilar to the normal Firefox browser, Focus eliminated tabs and menus, calling it “visual clutter.” Aside from creating visual appeal and efficient browsing speed, Focus is empowering users to take control of their browsing history in an age where privacy is no longer a luxury. How does this mobile app have the ability to do this? Simple.
Firefox Focus has the ability to block ad trackers. In other words, it bars third parties from easily collecting information on your surfing trends and the sites you visit. A lot of people are unaware that this occurs, but with Focus, the app brings this act to light. An example of how this would work in the browser is: if you’re doing some online shopping and go to a different tab within the app, you won’t see ads from your shopping excursion on the new browser. No more ads following you around like a shadow. An additional advantage of this is that it gives you a faster browsing experience.
Another great feature of the mobile app is its ability to erase your digital footprint by deleting browsing sessions with one click. Firefox Focus eliminated all the menus and created a simple button that users can click at any point during their session. One of three exclusive features for Androids is the notification reminder, which will send an alert to your phone to delete your browsing history even when you’re not in a session. But it only works if Focus continues to run in the background.
Another exclusive feature Android users get with the release is the ad tracker counter. It’s pretty self-explanatory. Focus shows users how many ads are being blocked from each site you visit during your session. This function can be toggled on or off. It’s suggested that if a web page isn’t performing properly, to do the latter. This is the third exclusive feature that is available with the Android release: the ability to disable the tracker blocker.
According to Mozilla, Firefox Focus has garnered a 4.6 average rating on the App Store to date. People that are using this new browser seem to love it. Since its release to Android yesterday, it will be interesting to note how other users react to the changes in the service. In the meantime, this mobile app is a forward step in fighting against third parties controlling how your data is used.
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