Do you love your iPad, but aren’t so sold on Safari, Apple’s built-in Web browser? The folks at Mozilla, the makers of Firefox, are right there with you. But unlike everyday haters, Mozilla’s engineers are fully capable of whipping up an alternative of their own, and they’re doing just that with “Junior,” a prototype iPad browser with one of the sleekest, simplest and most tablet-friendly interfaces we’ve seen yet.
“We wanted to make something entirely new,” Mozilla’s Alex Limi said as he introduced the prototype browser in a Product Design Strategy presentation. “We wanted to look into how we could reinvent the browser for a new form factor.”
There are plenty of alternative iPad browsers out there, but Junior stands out by keeping things straightforward and visual. Rather than filling the display with tabs and browser bars, Mozilla’s browser gives web pages full-screen attention, with only two faint thumb-sized overlay buttons — a back button on the left, and an icon of a plus sign on the right — taking up additional real estate.
Tapping the plus icon brings up a new screen, which is split into thirds. The top third is dedicated to snapshots of recently visited pages; the middle third is a list of bookmarks, identified by the website’s logos; and the bottom third contains the keyboard and URL bar.
Don’t worry; Mozilla knows a browser that simple can’t satisfy everyday web surfing needs. The two main buttons can expand to display additional options — such as print and reload — and Junior will support multiple user logins and private browsing.
You can see Mozilla’s Alex Limi talking about Junior in this video. The browser talk starts around the 30 minute mark. Don’t expect to see Junior in the App Store anytime soon, however; the prototype browser still appears to be in its infancy.
Via The Verge