Firefox 5 may take cues from Chrome, IE9

No doubt about it, Firefox 4 is a worthy competitor to other browsers out today. Mozilla still appears to be in partial catch-up mode, though. A story by ConceivablyTech suggests the next version of Firefox, due on June 29, will incorporate several features that premiered in Chrome and Internet Explorer 9 not so long ago.

Among the Chrome hand-me-downs: a "new tab" page, an integrated PDF viewer, and the ability to select multiple tabs at once, which has reportedly cropped up in nightly builds of the Google browser. ConceivablyTech also says Mozilla will support "taskbar web apps," which sound not unlike an IE9 feature that lets you pin sites to the Windows 7 taskbar.

Firefox 5 might not be all about playing catch-up, though. Word is that Mozilla also has plans for more original changes and additions: user interface tweaks, a file upload indicator, a "permanent Home app tab," a more elaborate system to manage site log-in details, and tight integration with social networking sites, allowing users to share links with their friends on, say, Facebook or StumbleUpon directly from the browser interface.

That sounds like quite an ambitious roster of additions for a release due in only three months—especially given how long Mozilla took to get Firefox 4 out the door. Even Google, which has been following a breakneck-paced release schedule for some time now, tends to add major new features relatively slowly.

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