Firefox 96 is released! This is what's new

Firefox is a secure, free (as in freedom), and open-source browser developed by the not-for-profit Mozilla Foundation, with a primary focus on protecting the privacy of its users. A new stable version of the browser is released every 4 weeks, and today (January 11, 2022) is the date of release of Firefox version 96, and in this article, we will cover the most important new features in this version, which will be released later today.

First, Firefox 96 will not bring any change to the browser's graphical interface, there will be no new settings to configure or new elements to discover in the interface. This new version comes mainly only with improvements in browser performance and its handling of computer resources, in addition to fixing some bugs that negatively affect the user experience while using Firefox.

The browser development team has made improvements to some MediaStream API properties, including significant improvements in noise-suppression (MediaTrackSettings.noiseSuppression) and auto-gain-control (MediaTrackSettings.autoGainControl), as well as minor improvements to the echo-cancellation (MediaTrackSettings.echoCancellation), to provide users with a better overall experience.

Some improvements have also been made to significantly reduce main-thread load, and you can now choose to print only odd/even pages when printing.

Cookies sent from the same domain but using different schemes (for example HTTP or HTTPS) are now considered to be from different sites with respect to the cookie SameSite directive. Firefox will now enforce the Cookie Policy: Same-Site=lax by default, which provides a robust first line of defense against Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) attacks.

For Linux users, Firefox 96 changes the shortcut key for "Select All" from Alt+a to Ctrl+a for solving what Mozilla calls web-compat and avoiding conflict with access keys.

This version also fixes some bugs found in earlier browser versions, such as:

  • Fixing an issue where video intermittently drops SSRC.
  • Fixing an issue where WebRTC downgrades screen sharing resolution.
  • Fixing the video quality degradation in certain sites.

Mozilla will announce the release of Firefox 96 later today, but you can update to this new version from now, by downloading the stable version already on Mozilla servers via the following link, and if you are using a Linux distribution, Firefox 96 should be available in your distribution's repositories in the next few days.

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