Firefox might be coming to Windows 11’s Microsoft Store

Windows 11 Firefox

With Windows 11, Microsoft said it wants to make it easy for
developers to submit any apps and games to the store regardless
of the framework used for the program. Microsoft is also
planning to bring its own apps, like Teams, Office and Visual
Studio, to the redesigned store.

In addition to Microsoft apps, Windows 11 Store is also open to
all third-party desktops (Win32) programs, such as Chrome and
Firefox. In the past, Google has tried getting its Chrome
browser onto the Windows Store by publishing an installer for
the app, rather than the app itself.

Microsoft prevented Google’s move citing a number of reasons,
most of which revolve around Windows Store policies.
Thankfully, Microsoft has relaxed those strict policies and the
Store is now open to everyone. As a result, companies like
Mozilla and
Adobe can now bring their desktop apps to the Store.

In a bug post, a Mozilla engineer confirmed the company is
considering a new Microsoft Store version of Firefox. Replying
to a user’s question on Firefox’s availability in the new
Windows Store, Nick Alexander, Senior Performance Software
Engineer at Mozilla, said:

Indeed! There’s a lot of activity that will happen very
quickly starting in just a few short days on this very subject,
but I can’t link to most of it just this moment. Next week
[July 5+] you should see public movement.

Additionally, one user told us that Firefox’s Microsoft Store
product page briefly appeared on Google and Bing search results
with the following meta description:

Things are looking different in 2021. The Firefox browser
has been designed to bring you a more modern and calmer web
experience on-the-go. Download now!

Microsoft Store now allows Chromium and Gecko rendering engines

It’s also worth noting that Microsoft has already updated its
store policy
page with a clarification that web browsers in Windows
Store “web must use either the Chromium or the Gecko
open-source engine”.

Previously, Windows Store only allowed browsers that use “the
appropriate HTML and JavaScript engines provided by the Windows
Platform”, otherwise known as EdgeHTML.

Basically, Microsoft has been insisting that the Store-based
browsers must not use their own engines, so if Mozilla had
published Firefox in the old Store, it wouldn’t have been
Firefox.

This is changing with Windows 11 and the updated store policy
explicitly allows Firefox’s Gecko browser engine.

Firefox on Windows 11
Firefox on Windows 11

In terms of looks and performance, we’re expecting the
Microsoft Store version of Firefox to be the same as the
version currently offered on the company’s website. Thanks to
the new policies, monthly updates for the Store-based Firefox
can be delivered directly via Mozilla’s own CDN services.

The refurbished Microsoft Store is currently set to go live
this fall on Windows 11 and Windows 10.

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