Internet Explorer 10 won’t be the only browser that Windows 8 users will be able to enjoy on their devices starting later this year.
Mozilla is also looking into bringing its Firefox browser to Windows 8, and has already offered some details on how it aims to make the move.
However, the company notes that all will depend on whether Microsoft will offer the same capabilities for Firefox as it does for IE10.
In a post on Mozilla Wiki
, they explain that this means “running at the Medium level integrity process that allows us the full use of the Win32 API and what we need from Metro, or a set of APIs that allow Mozilla to port Gecko to the WinRT.”
“For the purposes of this feature proposal, I'm assuming we'll get the first and we won't have to port the bulk of Gecko and instead will use the win32 dlls from within Metro,” the page says.
The proposal is not new. In fact, the said page has been online since last year, and was last modified on December 15th.
Applications designed specifically for the Windows 8 platform will have to be touch-enhanced and to comply with the Metro UI. Apparently, the upcoming Firefox for Windows 8 will be designed in line with these requirements as well.
However, Mozilla is also determined to keep the Gecko capabilities in the new Metro environment. The goal is to have the browser working in full-screen and to deliver “an Appbar that contains common navigation controls (back, reload, etc.,) the Awesomebar, and some form of tabs.”
At the moment, Internet Explorer is the only browser that we know to be working on Windows 8. It will be delivered as a Metro application on ARM devices, though a desktop mode
will also be available for some users.
Also in Windows on ARM, Internet Explorer will not feature support for plug-ins
, and we might expect any other browsers for the platform to lack the capability as well.
Hopefully, Microsoft will take a different approach with browsers on Windows 8 than it did on Windows Phone, where all such applications are IE-based.