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Mozilla's mobile browser Fennec hits Alpha

fennec.jpg
From the "but what about WebKit?" files:

The first alpha of Mozilla new Fennec mobile browser is now out, though its mobile platform availability is extremely limited. Fennec only works on Nokia N810 Internet Tablets currently, though efforts are ongoing for a Windows Mobile version.

But don't worry - if you've got a Windows/Mac/Linux desktop you too can download Fennec to try it out on your local desktop.

"That's right, you can install Fennec on your Windows, OS X or Linux
desktop too! We want you to be able to experiment, provide feedback,
write add-ons and generally get involved with the Mozilla Mobile
project, even if you don't have a device," Mark Finkle Mozilla Platform Evangelist blogged.

While I definitely agree that mobile is a place where Mozilla should be, I also know that Mozilla is at a distinct disadvantage in mobile for a number of reasons.

First off both Google Android and Apple iPhone use WebKit based web browsers. Fennec (unless i'm totally mistaken) uses Gecko. As well Nokia owns Trolltech, developers of the qtopia mobile develpoment suite which also leverages WebKit. I would strongly suspect that Nokia will also standardize on its mainstream Symbian OS phones with WebKit as well.

The simple fact that bleeding edge app developers are targetting WebKit means that Fennec will face an uphill battle. Then again, Mozilla has been facing an uphill battle on the desktop side for years so what else is new right?

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