Mozilla continues to chisel away and improve the open source (opens in new tab) browser’s handling of non-secure HTTP connections by upgrading them to secure HTTPS connections.
After introducing a HTTPS by default policy in Private browsing in Firefox 91 (opens in new tab), the latest release adds “automatic switching to HTTPS browsing mode by using the HTTPS RR browser as Alt-Svc headers.”
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The feature is touted as a means to auto-update HTTP connection to HTTPS, whenever possible. However, the company hasn’t shared any details on how the arrangement would affect the end-user, especially when compared to the current arrangement.
Mozilla is yet to reply to TechRadar Pro’s email seeking an explanation about this much-touted feature.
One of the other marquee features in Firefox 92 (opens in new tab) is the official support for the AVIF image format. Based on the royalty-free AV1 video codec, AVIF offers significant bandwidth savings compared to the other image formats prevailing on the web, without compromising on features.
The release also improves certain existing features. For starters, the certificate error pages have been redesigned to give a better user experience. For macOS (opens in new tab) users, the bookmark toolbar menus will nicely follow Firefox’s visual styles.
For Android users (opens in new tab), the headline feature in Firefox 92 is support for the Web Authentication API, or WebAuthn, which will enable the use of bluetooth or USB security keys (opens in new tab) to log into websites.
Firefox releases for iOS (opens in new tab) don’t just use a different browser engine (WebKit instead of Gecko), but also follow a different version numbering. In this release cycle, iOS users move on to Firefox 37, which now offers the ability to manually add new accounts to the browser’s inbuilt password manager.
In terms of security, Firefox 37 for iOS touts improvements to the enhanced tracking protection (ETP) feature, which is more verbose about the security mechanisms of the visited websites.
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