Firefox 3 has only recently shipped but the first public milestone for its successor is fast approaching. The Mozilla team is expecting that the code freeeze for alpha 1 of Firefox 3.1, code named Shiretoko, will be next Monday and that alpha 1 be available for early adopter testing on July 25.
During a status meeting on Shiretoko Tuesday, Mozilla developers said Beta 1, which will be more generally available to the public for testing, is due in August and Beta 2 is expected to be released in September. The Mozill ateam is shooting to ship the upgrade by year's end or the first quarter of 2009.
The features list for Firefox 3.1 is still in discussion, top developers told ZDNet. "We're not at a point where these sort of decisions are being made," said Mike Beltzner, Firefox project lead. "As you heard at today's meeting, we're currently working towards shipping a first developer milestone (Alpha 1) to get broader feedback on the work that we've been doing to date. Until we've shipped that first milestone, though, the future is still too hazy."
But according to sources, Mozilla is looking at including support for video as defined by HTML 5 specification as well as support for cross-site XMLHttpRequests (XHR) for building stronger web applications and more easily implementing mashups.
Based on planning notes posted on the web, currently, three big items appear on the features list -- tag autocomplete, bulk tagging support, and private browsing mode for corporate users. Also on tap: advanced search UI, a lightweight tagging user interface, integration of a browser's download history.