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Mozilla has released a new beta version of its popular Firefox web browser and it’s got a fantastic feature for Android smartphones. Firefox 42 Beta for Android brings Tab Queuing— i.e. the ability to open external links later in the background in Firefox.

Firefox 42 Beta for Android and desktop also adds Tracking Protection in Private Browsing mode, which stops third-party companies from tracking your web behavior as you go from one site to another. And the desktop version also gets Tab Muting!

Download: Firefox 42 Beta for Android, Windows, Mac, or Linux

What is Tab Queuing?

firefox-42-tab-queue

“Open URLs in the background” is a complex single line to explain a simple action. And once you hear what it actually is, you’ll want it!

Let’s say you are browsing your Twitter or Facebook feed. You come across an interesting link. You want to continue browsing your timeline, but you know that tapping the link will open it in a browser.

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Well, with Tab Queue, that doesn’t happen. When you tap a link, it’s added to your Firefox Tab Queue. A toast notification tells you that the link has been added, without opening Firefox or loading the link immediately.

Your Tab Queue (with the number of links stored) appears in your Android’s notifications bar. Tap that or the toast notification to go to Firefox, which will then start loading all those links.

TL;DR: When you are using any app, you can continue using it. When you see a link, tap it and it’s added to a queue, without moving you away from the app. Go to your notifications to find your Tab Queue, and with one tap, open them all in Firefox.

The whole experience is similar to Link Bubble Stop Waiting For Links to Load: Link Bubble For Android Saves You Time Stop Waiting For Links to Load: Link Bubble For Android Saves You Time Some first-world annoyances are so subtle that we hardly notice them. But once you see one, it's hard to ignore it. Read More , but does not have any of Link Bubble’s limitations and uses the powerful Firefox Android browser, complete with its kickass add-ons Unmissable Addons For Firefox On Your Android Device Unmissable Addons For Firefox On Your Android Device Firefox for Android has a trick up its sleeve: Add-ons. Just as Firefox offers a more powerful extension system than Chrome on the desktop, it beats Chrome for Android by supporting extensions. You can install... Read More .

How to Enable and Use Tab Queuing

Firefox-42-settings-open-multiple-links

Tab Queuing isn’t active by default, but you can switch it on quickly.

  1. Install Firefox Beta for Android.
  2. Tap the Menu button (three-dot icon in the top-right corner).
  3. Tap Settings > Customize > and check Open multiple links.

You will need to make Firefox Beta your default browser How To Remove, Change, Or Set Default Apps In Android How To Remove, Change, Or Set Default Apps In Android The default way of changing your default apps can be annoying, but this app makes it super simple. Read More , or choose it every time you tap a link in any app. The link will be auto-added to your queue.

Firefox-42-tab-queue-notifications

To open your queue:

  1. Tap “Open” in the toast notification when you go to a link
  2. Tap the Firefox Beta “X tabs waiting” notification in your notifications bar.

What is Tracking Protection?

Firefox-42-Tracking-Protection

Firefox 42 Also Adds Tracking Protection, in both the desktop and Android browsers. This feature stops third-party companies from tracking you when you move from site to site. It’s available only in the Private Browsing mode Not Just for Porn: Other Uses For Private Browsing Not Just for Porn: Other Uses For Private Browsing Private-browsing mode has many other names, including "incognito mode" in Chrome and "InPrivate Browsing" in Internet Explorer. Some people refer to private-browsing mode as "porn mode", but it isn't just for porn addicts. It can... Read More .

In case you didn’t know, Facebook and other social networks are tracking you online How To Block Facebook And Other Social Networks From Tracking You Online How To Block Facebook And Other Social Networks From Tracking You Online Whenever you visit a site with a Like, Tweet or +1 button, you're actually sharing data with Facebook, Twitter or Google. And that's not all. There are hundreds of advertising and data collection companies that... Read More . Google searches, ad networks, and even those innocuous Facebook buttons keep track of you. While you can use extensions to protect your privacy Use These 6 Extensions To Improve Privacy & Security On Firefox Use These 6 Extensions To Improve Privacy & Security On Firefox You are being watched on the Internet – but if you use Mozilla Firefox, some of its great add-ons can help protect your privacy and security on the Web. Read More , those aren’t enabled in Private Browsing mode by default.

“Users have a greater expectation of privacy when using Private Browsing,” Mozilla says. “Users reported that they believed Private Browsing was already protecting them from third-party tracking across the Internet.” So Mozilla is baking that feature into the browser.

Tracking Protection will not load those tracking elements in sites that are known to host them. Mozilla clarifies in its Tracking Protection F.A.Q.s that its blocklist is based on the blocklist of privacy and security tool Disconnect Disconnect 2: Make The Web A Safer, Faster Place [Chrome & Firefox] Disconnect 2: Make The Web A Safer, Faster Place [Chrome & Firefox] Read More .

Firefox-42-whitelist-makeuseof

On some sites, Tracking Protection blocks ads too, including here at MakeUseOf. If you are using Tracking Protection, we request that you please whitelist MakeUseOf Please Whitelist MakeUseOf In Adblock: A Plea From a Former Adblock Filter Developer Please Whitelist MakeUseOf In Adblock: A Plea From a Former Adblock Filter Developer It’s no secret that we’re not huge fans of Adblock here at MakeUseOf. But we know that some of you won’t let go of Adblock until it’s pried out of your cold, dead hands. If... Read More by disabling the feature for this site, since we are an ad-supported, free information source.

Mozilla has a clear step-by-step guide to enable and disable Tracking Protection, but it’s actually really simple. Start a new tab and just follow the on-screen instructions.

Firefox 42 Desktop Gets Tab Muting!

firefox-42-tab-muting

One of the best features of Chrome is tab muting I Hate Google Chrome But I'm Trapped In It. Here's Why I Hate Google Chrome But I'm Trapped In It. Here's Why In the Chrome vs. Firefox war, I'm siding with the Google users. But I don't want to. Chrome is my browser of choice because it has features that I can't live without. Read More . With this, when a tab in the background is playing audio—like, say, a YouTube video—then you will see a loudspeaker icon on that tab. This makes it easy to spot where the sound is coming from.

If you want to mute that tab, just click the loudspeaker icon. To unmute, click again. It’s an incredibly easy way to silence individual tabs while keeping the tab open.

Is Firefox Ready to Beat Chrome?

Firefox on Android is looking like a great browser now. On the desktop, Mozilla is adding some of Chrome’s best features, like tab muting and will soon let you run Chrome extensions in Firefox Running Chrome Extensions in Firefox: What You Need to Know Running Chrome Extensions in Firefox: What You Need to Know Soon, you'll be able to run your favorite Chrome extensions in Firefox. This game-changing development is likely to bring about a new renaissance in Firefox users and revolutionize the way extensions are created. Read More . It looks like Firefox is ready to take the battle to Chrome.

Do you think Firefox can beat Chrome? Are you ready to break up with Chrome It's Time To Break Up With Google Chrome It's Time To Break Up With Google Chrome As a big fan of Google Chrome for a long time, I finally decided it was time for us to break up. It came down to overall performance, customization, and extensions. Read More and move to Firefox?

  1. Milind
    October 21, 2015 at 5:06 am

    "Use multiple links" is nothing like LinkBubble or Flynx. The whole point of those is to actually load the page in the background so that by the time you click on the page, it's fully loaded and ready to be read. Firefox beta merely adds the page to the browser. The loading happens after yo have switched to the browser. Which totally defeats the purpose. Maybe the feature is not complete yet. But as it stands, it's nor replacing LinkBubble and is pretty useless.

  2. Jagdesh Singh Jjsd
    October 3, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    I would suggest getting linkbubble especially since its now free.I suppose its somewhat like tab queuing. Not as suitable for a daily browser but defiantly worth having it
    http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/link-bubble-review/

    • Mihir Patkar
      October 3, 2015 at 3:51 pm

      Yup, it's exactly like Tab Queueing, but hey, you get a proper full-fledged browser with Firefox 42 and no floating app icon either!

      • Jagdesh Singh Jjsd
        October 4, 2015 at 9:17 am

        I usually use it to open articles from facebook app,flipboard,twicca etc.

  3. Joe Keeley
    September 30, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    Glad to hear that Firefox is getting a mute tab button, especially as Chrome has had it for a while. It's a simple thing that can be so useful.

    • Mihir Patkar
      October 1, 2015 at 7:33 am

      I know, right? About damn time, Mozilla

  4. likefun butnot
    September 29, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    I've never found Chrome for Android to be a particularly compelling browser. Android actually has a lot of good browsing options and there's no One True Browser for it any more than there is on Windows or OSX.

    Android Chrome is somewhat crashy and seems to eat a lot of RAM. I also notice more rendering defects in it than on Firefox or Dolphin. The only real reason I keep it on most Android devices is that a certain percentage of mobile web developers entirely equate mobile browsing with Webkit a rendering engine and don't fail as gracefully as I might like.

    Fennec (Firefox for Android) has an image problem in that it doesn't have much in the way of marketing, doesn't ship as a default product on anything and the biggest reasons for using it amount to third party addons anyway. I think it's faster and less crashy, but I also wouldn't bother with that if not for Ad blocking and Ghostery support (and Flash, I guess. Maybe. For somebody). I don't know if it needs to have vastly wider adoption on Android, or if growth in Fennec usage would just lead to greater abandonment of developer work on the desktop Firefox product. I also know that I see more Mobile IE traffic than I see Fennec browser sessions in the logs on the web sites I manage. It's very much a niche product.

    In closing, all contemporary web browsers across all platforms are to some greater or lesser degree unsatisfactory and it is probably best to consider each of them as a tool for a particular set of needs rather than the be all and end all of web usage.

    • Mihir Patkar
      September 30, 2015 at 6:48 am

      Fennec actually had this feature for some time, but right now, FF seems to be doing better as an overall browser than Fennec. I tried Fennec for this review and was disappointed, compared to FF. Your thoughts?

  5. Peter Everett
    September 29, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    Ah, the good old tl;dr. I haven't seen that used since they closed swg

    • Mihir Patkar
      September 30, 2015 at 6:47 am

      I'm old-school

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