Proton, the new design that Mozilla will debut in Firefox 90

Proton, Firefox 90 design

Personally, I am not complaining about the design that Mozilla uses in its browser, but the truth is that almost all modern software uses something different. More specifically, there are almost no vertices and almost everything has rounded tips. That is something Mozilla is working on, and it will be a reality in several months. In fact, it will be one of the most outstanding novelties of the next release with a ten numbering change, that is, in Firefox 90.

So has reported Techdows, where there are captures a little better than mine, partly because to me in Manjaro and with some tweaks in his Xfce, some of the promised functions do not appear. The design change will come under the pseudonym of Proton and, to the aforementioned change with softer edges, another will also be added that will change the way of displaying the options that we access from the three lines that are also known as a «hamburger».

Firefox 90 is coming in May

The most visible change and one of those that will attract the most attention can be seen in the screenshot that heads this article: lashes will be more rounded, something that we will see whether we leave the top bar or not. The other change that we will notice the most is what is shown when we access the hamburger: the menu will be drop-down and at first it will only show what we use the most. This is what I have not been able to verify in my tests, simply because it does not appear that way. We must not forget that everything is in the experimental phase.

The Firefox 90 Proton will change the UI as follows:

  • Address bar.
  • Toolbox.
  • Tab bar (as in the header capture).
  • Burger menu.
  • Information bars.
  • Deployable.

Mozilla has also prepared changes to initial configuration after a zero installation, the new tab page, applications menu bar, among others. The new tab page looks a bit like the one in Opera, one of the most popular Chromium-based browsers.

How to test the new design

In Firefox 84, the one I use by default, it is not possible to test Proton, but it is in the Nightly version, currently Firefox 87. Therefore, the recommended steps to follow would be these:

  1. We download Firefox Nightly from this link.
  2. Unzip the downloaded file.
  3. We go to the Firefox folder that we have unzipped and double-click on "firefox". It usually already has execution permission but, if not, we give it by right clicking and allowing it from the options.
  4. Once in Firefox Nightly, we go to the address bar and type about: config.
  5. We accept the notice.
  6. We search for "proton" and it will appear browser.proton.enabled. We change it to "true".
  7. Next, if we want to also activate the tabs and the hamburger, we have to create two values. To do this we write the following two, in both cases we create a "bootlean" and make sure that the value is "true".
    • browser.proton.tabs.enabled
    • browser.proton.appmenu.enabled
  8. Finally, we restart Firefox.

And that would be all. If nothing happens, that will be the design that Firefox 90 will have, an update that will arrive in May, or at least part of it. Meanwhile, you can now download Firefox 85 and navigate with greater privacy.


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