Firefox 16 Launches With Safari-Like Reader Mode On Android, New Developer Tools On Desktop

Mozilla is launching Firefox 16 today. While this version of the browser only introduces a few new features for consumers, developers can look forward to using Firefox’s new Developer Command Line. The Command Line, says the Firefox team, “provides easy keyboard control over Firefox Developer Tools and is intuitive, completing commands and parameters for you.”

In addition to this, the latest stable release of Firefox includes a boatload of other developer-oriented features, including CSS3 Animations, Transitions, Transforms, Image Values, IndexedDB and Values and Units. In addition, Firefox 16 gives developers access to the Battery API, which enables them to see a mobile devices’ battery status, as well as the Vibration API. Both are currently making their way through the W3C standardization process.

For users, the stable release now brings preliminary web app support to Mac, Windows and Linux, as well as initial VoiceOver support for Firefox on OS X. As has often been the case with new Firefox releases since Mozilla moved to this rapid release cycle, there are now major changes to the Firefox user interface.

Mobile Firefox, which doesn’t always get the credit it deserves, is also getting some new features. Most importantly, Mobile Firefox will now offer a Safari-like, distraction-free reader mode. Just like in Safari, users will now be able to click on the “Reader” icon in Firefox’s URL bar to activate this mode. In addition, Mobile Firefox now also allows you to use the “Share” menu and Firefox Sync to send tabs to your desktop or another mobile device.