With a more open iOS 8, Firefox is coming as a new browser option

Gigaom

After sitting on the iOS sidelines for years, Mozilla is planning to bring its Firefox browser to Apple’s mobile devices. Lukas Blakk, Mozilla’s release manager, tweeted the news, saying, “We need to be where our users are, so we’re going to get Firefox on iOS.”

With iOS usage growing strong since 2007 and its users among the most engaged web surfers, why hasn’t Mozilla done this sooner and why is it now choosing to work with iOS?

Firefox OS reference phone

The answer is actually simpler than you might expect. Until [company]Apple[/company] released iOS 8 a few months ago, third-party browsers for the platform were hobbled by comparison to Apple’s own mobile Safari app, particularly when it comes to executing JavaScript code and the Nitro engine. Safari, for example, supported JIT, or Just In Time, JavaScript compiling, but third-party browsers didn’t have access to that.

That changes with iOS 8 and Apple’s addition of…

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