Here is what is new and changed in Firefox 83.0
The Firefox 83.0 Stable and Firefox ESR 78.5 release date is November 17, 2020. The new stable version of the Firefox browser and the new Extended Support Release version is provided via in-browser updates and as a standalone download from the official Mozilla website.
Firefox development channels are upgraded to a new version as well; this means that Firefox Beta and Firefox Developer editions are moved to version 84.0 and Firefox Nightly to version 85.0. Firefox for Android will be upgraded to version 83.0.
You can check out the Firefox 82.0 release notes here in case you missed them.
- Firefox 83.0 includes Security Fixes.
- Firefox 83 supports Mac OS Big Sur. Native-compilation is coming.
- WebRender rollout continues to Windows 7 and 8 devices, and Mac OS 10.12 to 10.15.
- Firefox 85 Nightly is the first version without Adobe Flash / NPAPI support
Firefox 83.0 download and update
Firefox 83.0 Stable and Firefox 78.5 ESR are released on November 17, 2020. The new version is downloaded and installed automatically provided that the automatic updating functionality of the browser has not been disabled.
Please note that we publish the release information prior to the official release. You may see a slight delay before the browser is offered via the browser's in-place upgrade functionality or on Mozilla's website.
You can check the currently installed version by selecting Menu > Help > About Firefox. The very same page runs a check for updates when it is opened to download and install updates if any are available.
Manual downloads are also available. The following pages list direct downloads for supported Firefox channels (will be available later on November 17, 2020)
- Firefox Stable download
- Firefox Beta download
- Nightly download
- Firefox ESR download
- Firefox for Android on Google Play
New features and improvements
Performance Improvements, less memory usage
Work on Firefox's performance and memory usage continued, and as a result, Mozilla notes that Firefox 83.0 page load performance has improved by up to 15%, page responsiveness by up to 12%, and memory usage has been reduced by up to 8%.
New HTTPS-Only Mode
Firefox 83.0 includes an option to accept only HTTPS connections when the new HTTPS-Only Mode is enabled. The browser attempts to upgrade any non-HTTPS connection in the process, and displays a warning screen if the site cannot be loaded at all. Firefox users may then continue to the HTTP site anyway or cancel the operation.
The feature is disabled by default. Firefox users who would like to start using it, can do that in the following way:
- Load about:preferences#privacy in the browser's address bar.
- Scroll down to the new HTTPS-Only Mode section on the page
- Switch from "Don't enable HTTPS Only Mode" to either "Enable HTTPS-Only Mode in all windows" or "Enable HTTPS-Only Mode in private windows only".
The mode offers two advantages: first, that it warns users if a site is still using HTTP, and second, that it attempts to upgrade connections automatically. The latter is helpful if a site supports HTTP and HTTPS connections and does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS automatically.
Search feature changes
Firefox's built-in search functionality has seen a number of changes and improvements in this release:
- When you select a search icon in the address bar displayed at the bottom of the search panel, search mode for that engine is entered to enable the display of suggestions. You get the old behavior by holding down the Shift-key before clicking. The old behavior loaded the search engine's result site right away.
- Firefox displays search shortcuts when it detects that you have entered a supported search URL. It allows users to select the option to run the search directly from Firefox's address bar.
- The bottom bar features buttons to search bookmarks, open tabs, and the browsing history next to using one of the supported search engines.
- Firefox makes it clearer which devices or displays are shared when a screen is presented in a video conference in the browser.
- Pinch zooming is supported on Windows devices with touchscreen devices and on touchpads on Mac devices; this can be used to zoom in and out of webpages using pinch-to-zoom, and that makes zooming in and out a lot smoother in Firefox.
- Picture-in-Picture mode supports fast forward and rewind keyboard shortcuts. Just use the left and right arrow keys to go back or forward 15 seconds. All keyboard shortcuts are listed here.
- The new Firefox version supports AcroForm to fill in, print, and saved supported PDF forms.
- The new version comes with a number of screen reader accessibility fixes.
- Firefox users from India will see Pocket recommendations once the browser has been updated.
- Firefox on Mac OS uses less power when restoring sessions with minimized windows.
Firefox for Android
- Firefox 83 for Android includes support for the following additional extensions: FoxyProxy, Bitwarden, AdGuard AdBlocker, Tomato Clock, LeechBlock NG, Web Archives, and Ghostery.
- Support for CSS Conic Gradients added.
- Scroll badge in Page Inspector can be used to debug scrollable overflow.
- The :screenshot helper command supports the --dpr parameter now when taking fullscreen screenshots.
Security updates / fixes
Security updates are revealed after the official release of the web browser. You find the informationÂ published hereÂ after release.
- Firefox 84 includes support for managing optional add-on permissions in the add-ons manager (about:addons).
Additional information / sources