Mozilla, the makers of Firefox are introducing a new browser for iOS called Firefox Focus which puts privacy first.
Firefox Focus is a very rudimentary browser for iOS which blocks ad trackers, social trackers, analytics and even has nifty toggles to turn all of that On or off easily. It even has a erase button which erases all your browsing history instantly to clear everything at any given point.
All modern web browsers have a toggle to turn ON private browsing but that comes with bare minimum functions and only helps clearing browsing data of the session after it’s over. Firefox Focus goes one step beyond that and helps with blocking a lot of content which is used to web profiling of users to serve them ads and other sponsored content all around the web.
Firefox Focus even has one button to switch from this app to the regular browser and continue your browsing on it if you want. This is a great feature if you are looking in shopping websites for some items and gifts and don’t want to be bombarded with ads about it all over the web. Tracking of this sort can follow you not only across browsing sessions but also across your account. Browsing in private mode is recommended for this.
Firefox Focus continues to operate as a Safari content blocker on iOS, and users will be able to take advantage of Tracking Protection on both Safari and Firefox Focus.
End of last year Mozilla had released a similar product which was an add-on for Safari on iOS to block unwanted content easily. At the time of launch Mozilla expressed their disappointment with the release as content blocking was disallowed for third party apps till IOS9. But now with iOS 10 it seems Mozilla was able to implement it in Firefox Focus.
For now this is limited to iOS and Mozilla might consider releasing it on other platforms if Focus works well with users and if there is enough demand for it . The iOS app is so basic that apart from the necessary function not much is added to the app (you don’t even get multiple tabs)
On the flip side this could become ones primary browser as blocking various trackers would dramatically improve browser performance. Usually analytics and tracking slows down website, this is experienced specially when your data connection is slow and loading website takes really long time. But this is still very basic browser with limited functionality and Safari & Chrome still being the most widely used browser on iOS, it’s an uphill battle for them.
You can download and try Firefox Focus from app store.