One of the unique aspects of Windows 8 is that it has been optimized for both tablets and regular computers. What this means is that OEMs can choose to build in a touchscreen display into their desktop PCs or laptops to allow users to interact with the Metro UI which, for the most part, has been designed for touch input.
However what this means is that developers will have to create an optimized version of their app for this touch interface since it obviously functions and looks very different from the regular desktop. We’ve seen developers like VLC do it, and at one point Mozilla attempted to do it as well with “Firefox for Metro”, but in the case of the latter, it looks like the project has since been canned.
This is according to a recent post by Mozilla on their blog which confirms that they will no longer be continuing the project due to low demand. According to Jonathan Nightingale, Vice President of Mozilla, it seems that there wasn’t enough users using the pre-release version of Firefox for Metro compared to those running Firefox on the desktop.
What this means is that it would be difficult for the developers to test their app since there weren’t that many people using it, which could result in a final release that could potentially be extremely buggy. According to Nightingale, “On any given day we have, for instance, millions of people testing pre-release versions of Firefox desktop, but we’ve never seen more than 1000 active daily users in the Metro environment.”
Nightingale does not dismiss the possibility that one day Metro could take off in a big way, but they’d rather wait for that to happen than to sink their time and efforts into something that not many people would adopt. He did state that the code will be available for download for those who are interested, but for it seems like this is the end for Firefox for Metro.
- 2014-04-10: Firefox OS 2.0 Begins To Take Shape
- 2014-03-19: Former Firefox Developer Explains Mozilla's Decision To Drop Its Modern UI Project
- 2014-03-19: Firefox Powers Better In-Browser Games At GDC14
- 2014-03-14: Mozilla Kills "Firefox For Metro" Project Citing Low Adoption
- 2014-03-12: Unreal Engine 4 Runs On Firefox
- 2014-02-11: Firefox Has New Tab Page Ads For Sale
- 2014-02-05: Mozilla's Firefox Launcher For Android Revealed