A new version of Mozilla Firefox is now available to download.

Firefox 87.0 is the latest stable release and includes a modest set of changes. The update is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux. Ubuntu users will receive the update automatically at some point in the next few days.

Mozilla promise fewer website breakages when using Firefox’s Private Browsing mode

So what’s new?

Well, Mozilla promise fewer website breakages when you use Firefox’s Private Browsing mode or have the ‘strict’ Enhanced Tracking Protection enabled. This is thanks to something called SmartBlock which provides stand-in scripts to ensure that well-known websites load both properly and promptly.

Another change on the privacy front: Firefox 87 comes with a new default HTTP Referrer policy. This cuts out path and query string information from referrer headers so that, Mozilla say, egregious sites you visit can’t accidentally glean this (sometimes sensitive user) data.

Finally, the Find in Page feature is a now more helpful thanks to the addition of reference points in the scrollbar when the “Highlight All” option is toggled on. At least, ‘more helpful’ is the idea. Personally, I think it looks a bit… OTT. You can see this change in action in the hero screenshot (unless you’re reading from a scraper or RSS client, sorry).

A few other changes worth knowing about:

  • Backspace key no longer a navigation shortcut for the back navigation button
  • Video and audio controls are now keyboard navigable
  • Synced tabs, Recent highlights, and Pocket removed from the Library menu
  • Simplified Help menu 

In summary, Firefox 87 doesn’t deliver anything particularly persuasive. If you don’t already use the browser daily I don’t think anything in this release will change that.

But with a big UI redesign on the way that could very well change…

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