Question:

Google Chrome Extensions VS Firefox extensions

by Guest14272141  |  9 years, 9 month(s) ago

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What is the difference between Chrome and Firefox Extensions?

 Tags: Chrome, extensions, Firefox, Google, vs

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  1. Ali Abdullah
    Hi, Mozilla and Google share a common enemy: Microsoft. They also share a lot of money (Google pours millions of dollars in Mozilla and is responsible for most of its revenue). And it would seem that ideologically they share the same belief that the web is the platform of the future. All of this has blunted a lot of the talk that Google’s Chrome browser was competing with Mozilla’s Firefox browser. But with the launch of extensions for Chrome it’s pretty hard to deny it at this point. Perhaps Firefox’s biggest selling point is that it has an expansive library of extensions that work with the browser. Even as Firefox gets beaten in performance tests, and people complain about its bloat, the extensions are always the thing that users go back to as the reason that they can’t switch. But now Chrome has those too. Sure, not as many yet, but they’re coming — fast. And fast is maybe the main key to this. As Google demonstrated tonight at a Chrome Extension launch event at its headquarters in Mountain View, it is very, very easy to make extensions for Chrome. “Extensions are just web pages,” Chrome engineer Erik Kay noted at one point before he and fellow engineer, Aaron Boodman, made an extension live on stage in all of five minutes. Later on in the event, Google had third-party extension developers come up and describe just how easy it was to create them for Chrome. Obviously, those guys are all going to say the right things on stage, but I had conversations with a number of different extension developers after the event — every single one of them gushed about the ease of making a Chrome extension. Not only did they gush, but many made the obvious comparison to making an extension for Firefox. Again, every single one of them noted just how much easier it was with Chrome. This is largely thanks to the fact that Chrome extensions really are built simply using web languages as Kay noted. Creating a Firefox extension is a much more involved process. But perhaps even more problematic for Mozilla is the extension submission process. With Chrome, for the majority of extensions, once you submit them, they are instantaneously live in the Extensions Gallery. The exceptions are if they use native code or access the file system, Google reserves the right to review them (which basically amounts to the developer signing an agreement that they have no malicious intent, and sending it to Google). The process for submitting a Firefox extension can take longer — in some cases significantly longer, I was told by multiple developers. The few I asked wouldn’t go so far as to compare it to Apple’s App Store review process, but they said it’s not entirely dissimilar either. Google, on the other hand, is much more open. And that’s gaining them a lot of fans in the extension developer community.

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