Firefox 3 to be faster than the competition

March 13, 2008 // 11:37 a.m.

Tags: #3 #4 #beta #firefox #gecko #java #memory #mozilla

Mozilla’s Vice President of Engineering, Mike Schroepfer, has stated that with each beta version of Firefox 3.0, Mozilla is gradually increasing performance. Currently at beta 4, this claim has been put to the test in a couple of simple benchmarks.

Firstly, Javascript performance: In Sunspider Javascript Benchmark, Firefox 3 beta 4 is currently twice as fast as Opera 9.5 beta and Safari, nearly three times faster than Firefox 2 and almost six times faster than Internet Explorer 7. Mozilla also claimed that with every successive beta, the performance has improved - between betas three and four there was a twofold improvement.

Another improvement, and one many of us have been after for a while, is the lower memory footprint.

Using Web 2.0 specific sites saw a 10 percent drop, and closing web pages actually frees 15 percent more memory now. No activity also sees a memory release as well. The only negative performance recorded was when surfing “regular” web pages saw a 9.5 percent rise in memory use.

You can check the specific results and even how to reproduce the tests on the Mozilla Links website. Obviously, personal usage will vary this – but if you work like Tim and have a million tabs open at once, it could provide some significant memory savings. (I might upgrade now - Ed.)

With Firefox 3, the developers claim to have concentrated on developing the browser for more complex web applications than basic web pages, as well as better graphic and text rendering architectures in Firefox’s core engine, Gecko.

If you’re interested in trying it out – Firefox 3 beta 4 is available here – let us know how you get on in the forums.

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