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Mozilla team announced the much-awaited release of Firefox 70 yesterday with amazing new features like secure password generation with Lockwise and the new Firefox Privacy Protection Report.

Firefox 70 also includes a plethora of additions for developers such as DOM mutation breakpoints and inactive CSS rule indicators in the DevTools, several new CSS text properties, two-value display syntax, and JS numeric separators, and much more.

Firefox 70 centers around enhanced privacy and security

The new Firefox 70 includes an Enhanced Tracking Protection, which includes a Firefox Privacy Protection Report that gives additional details and more visibility into how you’re being tracked online so you can better combat it.

The Enhanced Tracking Protection was set up as default by the browser in September this year. The report highlights how ETP prevents third-party trackers from building a user’s profile based on their online activity. The report also includes the number of cross-site and social media trackers, finger-printers and crypto-miners Mozilla blocked.

The report also helps users to keep themselves updated with Firefox Monitor and Firefox Lockwise. Firefox Monitor helps users to get a summary of the number of unsafe passwords that may have been used in a breach so that you can take action to update and change those passwords.

Firefox Lockwise helps users to manage passwords and different synced devices. Firefox Lockwise includes a button where users can click to view their logins and updates. They can also have the ability to quickly view and manage how many devices they syncing and sharing passwords with.

To know more about security in Firefox 70, read Mozilla’s blog.

What’s new in Firefox 70

Updated HTML forms and secure passwords

To generate secure passwords, the team has updated HTML input elements. Here, any input element of type password will have an option to generate a secure password available in the context menu, which can then be stored in Lockwise.

In addition, any type=”password” field with autocomplete=”new-password” set on it will have an autocomplete UI to generate a new password in-context.

New CSS improvements

Firefox 70 includes some CSS improvements like new options for styling underlines and new set of two-keyword values.

Options for styling underlines include three new properties for text-decoration (underline):

  • text-decoration-thickness: sets the thickness of lines added via text-decoration.
  • text-underline-offset: sets the distance between a text-decoration and the text it is set on. Bear in mind that this only works on underlines.
  • text-decoration-skip-ink: sets whether underlines and overlines are drawn if they cross descenders and ascenders. The default value, auto, causes them to only be drawn where they do not cross over a glyph. To allow underlines to cross glyphs, set the value to none.

Two-keyword display values

Until now, the display property has taken a single value. However, the team says that “the boxes on a page have an outer display type, which determines how the box is laid out in relation to other boxes on the page, and an inner display type, which determines how the box’s children will behave.” The two-keyword values allow you to explicitly specify the outer and inner display values.

In supporting browsers (which currently includes only Firefox), the single keyword values will map to new two-keyword values, for example:

  • display: flex; is equivalent to display: block flex;
  • display: inline-flex; is equivalent to display: inline flex;

JavaScript improvements

Firefox 70 now supports numeric separators for JavaScript. Underscores can now be used as separators in large numbers so that they are more readable. Other improvements in JavaScript include:

Intl improvements

Firefox 70 includes improved JavaScript i18n (internationalization), starting with the implementation of the Intl.RelativeTimeFormat.formatToParts() method. This is a special version of Intl.RelativeTimeFormat.format() that returns an array of objects, each one representing a part of the value, rather than returning a string of the localized time value. Also,  Intl.NumberFormat.format() and Intl.NumberFormat.formatToParts() now accept BigInt values.

Performance Improvements

The inclusion of the new baseline interpreter has speeded up JavaScript. The code for the new interpreter includes shared code from the existing Baseline JIT. You can read more about the interpreter on The Baseline Interpreter: a faster JS interpreter in Firefox 70.

New Developer tools

The Developer Tools Accessibility panel now includes an audit for keyboard accessibility and a color deficiency simulator for systems with WebRender enabled.

Pause option in DOM Mutation in Debugger

DOM Mutation Breakpoints (aka DOM Change Breakpoints) let you pause scripts that add, remove, or change specific elements. Once a DOM mutation breakpoint is set, you’ll see it listed under “DOM Mutation Breakpoints” in the right-hand pane of the Debugger; this is also where you’ll see breaks reported.

Source: Mozilla Hacks

Color contrast information in the color picker!

In the CSS Rules view, you can click foreground colors with the color picker to determine if their contrast with the background color meets accessibility guidelines.

Accessibility inspector: keyboard checks

The Accessibility inspector‘s Check for issues dropdown now includes keyboard accessibility checks:

Selecting this option causes Firefox to go through each node in the accessibility tree and highlight all that have a keyboard accessibility issue:

Hovering over or clicking each one will reveal information about what the issue is, along with a “Learn more” link for more details on how to fix it.

Web socket inspector

In Firefox DevEdition, the Network monitor now has a new “Messages” panel, which appears when you are monitoring a web socket connection (i.e. a 101 response). This can be used to inspect web socket frames sent and received through the connection.

This functionality was originally supposed to be in Firefox 70 general release, but the team had a few more bugs to resolve, so expect it in Firefox 71! For now, users can explore it in the DevEdition.

Fixed issues in Firefox 70

  • Built-in Firefox pages now follow the system dark mode preference
  • Aliased theme properties have been removed, which may affect some themes
  • Passwords can now be imported from Chrome on macOS in addition to existing support for Windows
  • Readability is now greatly improved on under- or overlined texts, including links. The lines will now be interrupted instead of crossing over a glyph.
  • Improved privacy and security indicators
    • A new crossed-out lock icon will indicate sites delivered via
      insecure HTTP
    • The formerly green lock icon is now grey
    • The Extended Validation (EV) indicator has been moved to the identity
      popup that appears when clicking the lock icon

To know more about other improvements and bug fixes in Firefox 70 in detail read Mozilla’s official blog.

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