Firefox 5 beta lands right on schedule

Last Friday Mozilla kept to its promise and shipped the first beta of Firefox 5.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Last Friday Mozilla kept to its promise and shipped the first beta of Firefox 5.

Here's a 'what's new' listing:

  • Added support for CSS animations
  • Added support for switching Firefox development channels
  • The Do-Not-Track header preference has been moved to increase discoverability
  • Improved canvas, JavaScript, memory, and networking performance
  • Improved standards support for HTML5, XHR, MathML, SMIL, and canvas
  • Improved spell checking for some locales
  • Improved desktop environment integration for Linux users

Note: Google's Chrome and Apple's Safari browser both support CSS animations.

There are also a whopping number of bug and stability fixes, detailed here.

Contrary to some report that say that the Firefox 5 user interface is identical to that of Firefox 4, there are, in fact, some small changes. Mozilla's Director of Community Development Asa Dotzler details a few changes:

As you can see, the buttons and textfields are much crisper. The corner radius has been sharpened up a bit and the button and textfield shadows have been tightened up and pulled into the border line.

The overall effect might seem subtle but after using it for a while and then going back to Firefox 4, you can really "feel" the difference.

Full release notes here. If you're thinking of running this beta, I suggest you check out the known issues list first.

Final release of Firefox 5 is schedule for June 21.

Editorial standards