Firefox’s AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chrome’s OmniBox!

mozilla labs firefox prospector image Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!

After the release of Firefox 4 which just changed the stats of browser war with its awesome features, Mozilla never stopped working hard on future of Firefox browser! Well we must agree, Firefox 4 got back Mozilla into browsers war and going strong day by day.

During the development phase of Firefox 4, Mozilla labs started new channel for experiments which they named as Mozilla Prospector.

Prospector is a series of experiments from Mozilla Labs focused on analyzing, experimenting and prototyping improvements on how you search and discover content with Firefox. We’re focusing on three main areas: websites you have visited, tabs you are currently viewing, and pages you haven’t visited yet.

As Mozilla says, Prospector mainly focuses on address bar which actually does the above mention areas. And now, here come a question! Is Mozilla actually planning for something like OmniBox in Google Chrome?

Awesomeness Inside AwesomeBar HD:

firefox awesomebar hd image Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!

Welcome to AwesomeBar HD! AwesomeBar HD is an add-on for Mozilla Firefox which turns the address bar to something more and something awesome. AwesomeBar was first released for testing on October 27, 2010.

Mozilla first started imitating Google by suggestion for the letter typed. Mozilla found it very useful and added this feature to Firefox 4. Recently AwesomeBar HD got an update and user can “Find what you want” at their finger tips!

Following are the points which show AwesomeBar HD can do something more and better than OmniBox on Chrome can do.

AwesomeBar HD project focuses on experiments on a combined location and search bar with a Mozilla twist. Unlike other browsers, the combined input will not send every letter you type to a remote server.

When user starts typing on AwesomeBar, Firefox will only look through its local history without any network activity. And results shown will be dependent on how frequently and how recently the page has been used.

Download AwesomeBar HD

Following are the top options available in AwesomeBar HD,

firefox awesomebar search web image Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!

  • Search: users can search through AwesomeBar by typing “search:” and followed by keyword they want to search. AwesomeBar currently allows Google, Bing and Yahoo search engines.
  • Books: if you are a book addict then AwesomeBar provides a shortcut to find them with ease! User can search books from Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Google Books.
  • Maps: user can search a restaurant or any address through AwesomeBar HD directly by top three providers like Google Maps, Bing Maps and MapQuest.
  • Pictures: search for any image on Flickr, Google Images and Bing Images by just typing “pictures:” and image keyword.
  • Videos: search for your favourite video from YouTube, Bing Video and Flickr Video.
  • People: This is an awesome feature added by Mozilla. Now user can search someone very easily on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Awesome! Isn’t it?

firefox awesomebar book search image Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!

These are the not only options, AwesomeBar also has shortcuts for,

  • Food: Yelp, Google Places, Menuism
  • Movies: Internet Movie Database, Rotten Tomatoes, Fandango
  • Music: Pandora, Amazon Music, Songza
  • News: CNN, NY Times, BBC
  • References: Wikipedia, Answer.com, Dictionary.com
  • Shopping: Amazon, eBay, Google
  • Sports: ESPN, Yahoo! Sports, Sports Illustrated
  • Weather: Weather Channel, Weather Underground, AccuWeather.com

Tech Link: First Look At Firefox 5 – A Site Specific Browser!

For those who don’t like to use their mouse for clicking on the options always, Mozilla has also got some useful keyboard shortcuts as well.

  • Ctrl-L focuses the location bar with the URL selected — ready to copy, edit or replace
  • Ctrl-K pre-fills with “search: ” so you can search the web just like from the search bar
  • Ctrl-T + tab opens a new tab and activates search (as if you tabbed to the search bar)
  • Easy to search like “boo: book name” is enough to search for books. No need to type full work “book:” or “picture:” for any search.

firefox awesomebar catagories search image Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!

Notice that “boo:” is good enough to activate the books category (it turned green), so if you wanted, you could just type “b:” to get books as well.

What Awesomeness Is Still Missing?

  • One related side effect of defaulting to opening new tabs is that replacing pinned app tabs is a bit more difficult. You actually can’t change the URL of an app tab with AwesomeBar HD installed because the URL will open up in a new tab. So for now, you’ll have to remove the app tab or create a new one.
  • Instant search will be more useful if we stop thinking about server hit every time.

The Prospector team is very interested in hearing back from you, so please install it for a bit, and let Mozilla lab know what you think. The Awesomebar HD is strictly an experiment so there’s no need to worry, or rejoice, just yet, it’s probably going to be a while before changes like this end up in Firefox.

We may expect to get these features in Firefox 5, Firefox 6 or Firefox 7 which are expected to b available by this year end!

Are you able to easily browse to websites that you normally go to? Do you care that you can return to your history without someone else knowing? Does the category list of text and clicking behaviour work for you? Share your experience with us icon smile Firefoxs AwesomeBar Getting Better Than Chromes OmniBox!


Microsoft’s HTML5 Add-on To Support H.264 On Chrome & Firefox!

microsoft h264 addon chrome firefox image Microsofts HTML5 Add on To Support H.264 On Chrome & Firefox!< credit >

If you all remember, Google Chrome will drop support for H.264 in the coming months and will only support WebM (VP8) and Theora codecs.

The reason is being getting into rapid innovation in the web media platform in the coming year and are focusing our investments in those technologies that are developed and licensed based on open web principles.

Well Google has started pushing its browser more towards HTML5 standards. Mozilla’s Firefox and Opera are the other two browsers which are encouraging developers to use WebM codecs.

The only important website that uses WebM is YouTube, Google’s video sharing service. Internet Explorer, Safari and iOS devices are still yet to think about supporting WebM.

microsoft h264 chrome extension image Microsofts HTML5 Add on To Support H.264 On Chrome & Firefox!

Upon all this stories, Microsoft started releasing few add-ons for Chrome and Firefox which keeps them in touch with H.264 video format. Microsoft has started interoperability work related to modern web standards which are no way limited to Internet Explorer 9.

microsoft h264 firefox addon image Microsofts HTML5 Add on To Support H.264 On Chrome & Firefox!

According to Microsoft,

The HTML5 Extension for Windows Media Player Firefox Plug-in is an add-on that enables Firefox users to play H.264-encoded videos on HTML5 pages by using the built-in capabilities found in Windows 7.

The Extension is based on a Firefox Add-on that parses HTML5 pages and replaces Video tags with a call to the Windows Media Player plug-in so that the content can be played in the browser.

This Add-on replaces video tags only if the video formats specified in the tag are among those supported by Windows Media Player. Tags that contain other video formats are not touched.

Tech Link: Download this add-on.

microsoft h264 chrome extension installed image Microsofts HTML5 Add on To Support H.264 On Chrome & Firefox!

Similar to Firefox add-on, this extension for chrome enables its users to play H.264-encoded videos (aka MP4) on HTML5 pages by using the built-in capabilities found in Windows 7.

Tech Link: Download this extension.

Well both the extensions checks if the browsers already supports MP4 (H.264) video codec, if so the extension will not be effective.

It’s very clear that H.264 provides a high-quality videos and is widely-used video format that serves the Web very well today. But browser providers like Google, Mozilla are stopped supporting it as they have to pay more royalties!

Microsoft has worked closely with Google to help them deliver a WebM implementation on Windows.


Gmail Web App For iPhone And Android Now In HTML5 And 44 Languages

gmail iphone android Gmail Web App For iPhone And Android Now In HTML5 And 44 Languages

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No one can ever beat Google in releasing number of updates per day. How many of you counted Google’s daily update for Chrome, search engine, android, Chrome OS, Gmail and others? It’s tough to keep track as we get minute to minute updates!

Google had made major revision to Gmail for mobile that should take advantage of the browser technology available on iPhone and Android devices. The major updates were made on UI part.

gmail mobile Gmail Web App For iPhone And Android Now In HTML5 And 44 Languages

Today Google update Gmail web app for iPhone and Android to latest HTML5. This makes it smooth and gets better UI with new HTML5 tags.

Availing Gmail web application for iPhone and Android is not so tough. Just visit gmail.com from your device and you can find a application download link.

Features such as search, stars, labels and threaded conversations all work in the mobile webapp just as they do in the desktop Gmail experience. But all these were available for only English version of Gmail web application.

But today Google has rolled out Gmail web application for 44 more languages. Below is the list of languages,

Arabic, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English (UK and American), Estonian, Filipino, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian (Bokmal), Polish, Portuguese (for both Portugal and Brazil), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish (for both Spain and South America), Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukranian, Urdu and Vietnamese.

This latest update from Google will work automatically when you visit Gmail from your iPhone or Android device which has default language in one of those listed above.

This latest Gmail web application comes with bunch of new goodies including offline support, smart links (titles will appear in links for Google Maps, YouTube and Google Docs), the ability to add and remove labels, layout improvements(HTML5 updates) and more, in addition to the existing features like starring, better threaded conversations and search.

This new version works fine for iPhones running iOS 2.2.1 and above, and all versions of Android.

Hope many iPhone and Android users experienced these Gmail updates. Please share your thoughts icon smile Gmail Web App For iPhone And Android Now In HTML5 And 44 Languages


20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2

apple ios 4 2 image1 20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2

As every one are updating or upgrading their products, even Apple is updating their products smoothly. They are not so hurry like few other players out there in market. Apple is having so many products and their strategy of updating them frequently is really awesome.

As you all know iOS 4 is new Operating System by Apple for its products iPhone, iPod, iPad etc. Initially Apple released iOS 4 with iPhone 4 adding 100′s of awesome feature.

Well here comes one more iOS 4 update. Apple is releasing iOS 4.2 tomorrow and fixes some initial glitches. 2 months back on Sept 15th first beta of iOS 4.2 had released. And as usual Apple has brought a plethora of new features to iOS.

Here are the list of updates coming through iOS 4.2,

Common For iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad

apple ios 4 2 iphone image1 20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2

1. AirPlay (replacement of AirTunes, AirPlay will offer stream video, music, and photos over Wi-Fi)

2. AirPrint Wireless Printing with Print Center

3. Import .ics calendar files directly for events

4. Birthdays icon has been changed in calendar

5. Updated Carrier Settings (US is AT&T 9.0)

6. Text search on web pages

7. 2 new fonts for Notes in Settings (Helvetica and Chalkboard)

8. Added support for Chinese URL over Safari

9. Added an indicator in the App Store which shows if an App supports Game Center

10. Support for CoreMIDI

11. YouTube voting

12. Minor improvements in UI graphics

13. New Parental Controls for deleting Apps, changing mail accounts and location services

14. New wallpapers in Settings

iPad exclusive features

Finally iPad is finally going to many features which iPhone 4 got. Features such as: multitasking, a unified email inbox, Game Center and folders are going reach iPad.apple ios 4 2 ipad image1 20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2

1. iOS 4 features for iPad (Multitasking, Folders, etc.)

2. Updated Carrier Signal Strength Display (3G iPad only)

  • Increase in the length of the smaller signal bars
  • The method in which signal strength is calculated has been enhanced

3. Additions to the multitasking tray

  • Brightness
  • Volume control
  • AirPlay Controls

4. iPad screen rotation lock switch is converted into a sound/silent switch in iOS 4.2 (Just like on the iPhones)

5. More than 30 new keyboards and dictionaries, including Arabic, Greek, and Hebrew

6. New Multitasking animation

7. New bookmarks design

iPhone and iPod Touch Exclusive Features

apple ios 4 2 ipod touch image1 20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2

1. Bug Fixes

  • Fixes glitch that can let a user get into the phone app while the phone is locked via “Emergency Call” by dialing a random number and quickly pressing the lock button after dialing that call
  • Fixes the alarm bug caused by daylight saving time changing, affected on a part of iPhone and iPod Touch owners located in Australia, New Zealand, and some European countries.
  • Improved iPhone 3G performance

2. Additions to multitasking tray

  • Volume controls
  • AirPlay controls

3. New Voice Memos icon

4. FaceTime shortcut from Messages app (iPhone 4 only)

5. New Text Tone Alerts (New & Original tone lists) (iPhone 4 only)

6. Ringer & Alerts on/off switch (Settings > Sounds) for volume buttons (iPhone only)

7. Assign different text tone alerts to each contact (iPhone only)

8. Restores full Field Test Mode

Well these are some cool new features coming to iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. And soon iPad owners will get to enjoy its 100+ new features and innovations.

Tech Link: Apple on iOS 4.2

You think these features are good enough to fight against Android? Raise your voice and listen to what others say icon smile 20+ New Features/Updates Of Apple iOS 4.2