For the online learning world


Best browser for online learning part 2 – Firefox

How well does Mozilla Firefox work for online learning?

In this series I’m reviewing the major web browsers, and how well they work for online learning, with particular reference to Moodle, H5P, and Big Blue Button.

As an Apple Mac user my primary browser is Safari. But my second, with almost equal use, is Firefox.

Firefox uses the Gecko layout engine (unlike Safari which uses WebKit), and Firefox definitely tried to position itself as the privacy champion. However, Apple’s security approach in Safari, and a number of other browsers that are designed from a ‘security first’ perspective, may in fact be more secure.

Two of the reasons for the popularity of Firefox are:

  • Multi-platform – you can use Firefox on Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android
  • Huge choice of plugins for extending the functionality

Moodle developers love Firefox largely due to the developer toolbar / console.

After many years using all types of online applications and services, my experience is that if Safari doesn’t work for some reason (rare) then I can use Firefox instead, no problem.

Firefox is usually pretty fast two (rated as fastest in 2019 by Tech Radar), and in terms of compatibility I encounter very few problems using Moodle, H5P, Big Blue Button, or any other web-based e-learning application.

Firefox accounts for around 10% of all web browsing (although it had over 30% at one time!), second only to Google Chrome, and that reflects it’s enthusiastic user-base, and strong marketing, and high trust reputation. In some countries, such as Eritrea and Cuba, it has 60%+ market share!

And as for extensions, just visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Firefox_extensions to get a feel for what’s available

Stuart Mealor
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Stuart Mealor

Stuart is interested in all things e-learning, with specific interests in Moodle, e-learning strategy, and business development. His experience in education over 30 years, MBA in International Business, and knowledge of e-learning systems implementation, together with graphic design background, give him a unique skill set for e-learning projects.

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