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By 26 June 2013 | Categories: news

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Mozilla has released the newest version of its Firefox browser, v22 (available here), which brings a number of new features to the browser’s offerings. Accompanying this though, is a pervasive and exciting vision for the web experience as a whole.

Along with the usual array of bug fixes, the two standout additions to Firefox’s feature set include support for 3D gaming, along with the ability to make video and voice calls from within the browser. The company explained that the former feature, enabled by Epic Games, has been made possible using a supercharged subset of JavaScript called asm.js.

This enables developers to create high-intensity applications, like 3D games and photo processing, directly on the web without having to install additional software or use plugins.

Developers, take note

Mozilla elaborated that this will give developers a low-cost solution to bring high performance games and applications to the web with technologies like JavaScript, Emscripten and WebGL. With the proof of the pudding being in the eating, Mozilla also showcased its 3D first person shooter game demo, BananaBread, rendered in Unreal Engine 3, and which runs in a browser.

However, high fidelity gaming is just one of the features espoused by the company, another is support for video calls, voice calls and file sharing without the need to install additional software or use third-party plugins.

Mozilla explained that with Web Real-Time Communications (WebRTC), it’s easy to integrate these features into web apps with just a few lines of code. This technology makes it possible to place and receive video calls from a mobile or desktop browser or share live video, files and images with friends and family.

This is similarly intended to enable developers to create more rich and interactive websites for people to experience across browsers, such as Firefox and Chrome.

To the point

In a blog post, the company asserted that it was “pushing the boundaries for what is possible on the web today and proving the web is the best development platform.”

“We are excited about the possibilities that these new technologies bring to the web and can’t wait to see what amazing experiences developers will create,” the company added.

After viewing BananaBread in action, we would have to say we agree. Indeed, the proliferation of apps may have stolen the internet’s milk money and kicked sand in its face, but, if Mozilla has its way, the allure of internet development may well be back with a vengeance.

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