After Australis, Firefox is going to get another UI overhaul. Mozilla is working on a new UI for Firefox browser, called Photon, likely to ship with Firefox 57. Nightly user, if you’re excited about seeing upcoming UI changes to Firefox and want to test them, let me tell you Photon UI changes aren’t landing on a separate branch, Firefox team is landing them behind preferences, you can enable the preference in Firefox 55 Nightly and follow the developments.
Enable Firefox’s new Photon UI
- Visit about:config
- Find the preference browser.photon.structure.enabled and change its value to ‘true’.
- Restart Nightly.
June 30, 2017: Latest Photon update has moved ‘Bookmark this page’ star icon to location bar or address bar. And the onboarding overlay will now also be shown on toolbar at the bottom of Firefox window.
June 27, 2017: Clicking on fox icon appearing on about:home or new tab will open Firefox 57 Photon onboarding tour.
June 18, 2017: Mozilla has enabled Photon UI by default in Nightly, so you don’t need to flip the above said preference.
June 14, 2017: With the application menu landed completely, new photon update has added new downloads icon to the toolbar. Have a check it in the below screenshot.
June 2, 2017: As we told in the previous update, the Photon designed menu on Nightly has been now fully in place with the addition of Zoom controls.
June 1, 2017: New update has added Exit button to application menu, and when Photon team adds Zoom controls to the menu, the hamburger menu will be completed.
May 30, 2017 : New Photon update landed on Nightly made Firefox browser title bar color dark by default on Windows 10.
May 28, 2017: Latest update landed on Nightly has added ‘Bookmark This Page’, ‘Send to Device’ menu items to Page actions menu and Customize mode has been updated.
May 25, 2017: New Photon Update has added ‘sign in to Sync’ and ‘Edit , cut, copy and Paste’ menu items to hamburger menu.
May 21, 2017: Latest Photon Update has added Help menu item to the menu.
May 17: 2017: Photon Update has added Web developer sub menu to menu and now page actions menu in address bar is now functional and got two menu items: Copy URL and email link.
May 14, 2017: More sub menu has been added to Firefox Photon Menu, which offers ‘Text Encoding’ and ‘Work Offline’ options.
May 13, 2017 : Latest update to Photon UI have been landed and Firefox team has added Library, Add-ons, Options and Customize items to the menu.
The advantage with this is everyday you see little or no UI changes or Photon updates landing on Nightly.
Update: We’ve decided to add Photon updates below as Mozilla lands the changes in Nightly:
Mozilla wants to surprise release population with Firefox 57 release, where UI looks completely different and new when compared to present Australis. FYI, Firefox team has no concerns of advanced users discovering the hidden Photon preferences before the 57 release.
Living with Photon UI
You’ll miss the Firefox menu and options, but still they can be accessed on Windows as you can press Alt for menu bar to appear. Enable the menu bar and then you can able to open Add-ons manager (Tools > Add0ns (Ctrl+Shift+A), newly organized Firefox preferences page (Tools > options) and help menu (Help > About Nightly) for installing Nightly updates. Or, you can disable the new Photon UI and come back to the Australis UI by toggling above said preference value.