Firefox 20 debuts with new download manager and private tab browsing


Firefox 20 made its debut yesterday with a few new features, one of which seems downright invaluable: an easily accessible download manager. Seriously, how many times have you or a family member downloaded something only to immediately lose track of where the file went on your system? The latest version of Firefox also includes upgraded private browsing, customizable homescreen shortcuts, and more support for HTML5 and WebRTC. Plus, many of these updates are included on the new version of Firefox for Android. Both the desktop and Android versions are available today.

Firefox 20’s new download manager is a simple little button that lives to the right of the search box. Click on it to see not only what files were most recently downloaded, but also the folder to which they were downloaded. From this box, users may also search for downloaded items and clear previous items. When you’re downloading a file, the icon changes to a handy progress bar. From here, you can also pause and resume downloads as needed.

Mozilla has also upgraded Firefox’s private browsing capabilities on the both the desktop and on Android. Users are now able to make one tab for private browsing while leaving other tabs unaffected. This eliminates the irritating problem of having to close your entire browsing session to exit private browsing mode. Mozilla suggests that the private browsing tab could be used to shop for gifts or for keeping multiple email accounts open, though we’re guessing that people will use that private tab for other, more personal reasons.

Along with the desktop edition, Firefox for Android has also been updated. The new version includes the same support for per-tab private browsing and support for lower-end mobile devices that use the ARMv6 processors, including the Samsung Galaxy Next, Dart, Pop, and Q, and the HTC Aria and Legend.

Lastly, Mozilla has given developers a hand with greater support within the browser for HTML5 and WebRTC protocols, including support for accessing, with permission, a user’s webcam and audio recorder.

Nothing mind-blowingly new here, but still an update we’re excited about.

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