Mozilla Firefox to Implement add-ons through Tweaked Extension APIs

By CIOReview | Tuesday, September 22, 2015
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FREMONT, CA: Mozilla, announces major changes going forward Firefox will implement add-ons. The most important of these will be the adoption of new WebExtensions API that will be largely compatible with the one’s currently in use by Blink-based browsers like Chrome and Opera.

These new WebExtensions API will ensure that developers will need to make fewer changes to their code for the add-on to run on Firefox. Writing extensions for Firefox used to be more complex than writing something with the same functionality for Chrome, reports Frederic Lardinois, TechCrunch.

As Firefox uses technologies like XPCOM and XUL to build user interfaces, which allows the browser to be written in JavaScript and ensure that extension developers have access to Firefox’s underlying features and added complexities. Developers will be starting with Firefox 42 after which they will have to get their extensions reviewed and signed by Mozilla before the extensions can be deployed. According to Mozilla, the move to the WebExtensions API will enable them to review add-ons significantly faster.

As for the future of extensions and add-ons, Mozilla plans to automate the review process and bring the review time down to five days for extensions listed in its web store. Currently Mozilla is in the process of making a major change to Firefox, too. Through the Electrolysis project, Mozilla is planning to separate the browser tabs and user interface into different processes. This will help to secure the browser by ensuring that a crashed tab doesn’t bring down the entire browser.