Firefox on the iPhone? Mozilla submits Firefox Home to Apple

We've known that Mozilla has been working on a version of its Firefox browser for iPhone called Firefox Home. On Wednesday, it submitted its attempt to Apple.

Firefox Home for iPhone

Updated (12:30 a.m. PT, July 1, 2010): Clarified the relationship between Firefox Home and Safari.

If you've been one of the many clamoring to see Firefox running on an iPhone, you may get your chance--of sorts.

Back in late May, Mozilla announced that it would be creating an iPhone version of its Firefox browser--though the solution is not a browser itself. On Wednesday, Mozilla submitted its Firefox Home iPhone app to Apple for testing--and, it hopes, for approval.

The free Firefox Home is more of a window to your Firefox browsing rather than a competing browser itself, which Apple's software development kit prohibits. Rather, the app relies on Firefox Sync , a cloud-based syncing technology that promises to securely sync your desktop bookmarks, history, and open tabs across Firefox browsers on desktops, mobile phones, and tablets. You'll be able to view recent Web sites directly from Firefox Home via a WebKit viewer or by opening your previously visited Web pages in the default Safari browser.

On the coding end, Firefox Home's URL viewer is based on WebKit, the same technology that powers the default Safari browser. Thanks to the app's role as a browser-helper that merely fetches your Firefox data rather than a Safari replacement, there's a good chance that Apple won't reject the app as a competing browser software, as the company has (in)famously done with full HTML browser attempts in the past.

Apart from delivering Web addresses, Firefox Home will also share links via e-mail.

It could take Apple days, weeks, or months to approve--or possibly reject--the app. We'll keep you posted with what happens next.

 

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