Firefox adds multitouch gestures for Macs


Allthough Mozilla's Eddie Lee had successfully proven the concept in a beta back in October, the latest beta of Firefox 3.2 brings multitouch gestures to the MacBook line... even on previous generation MBPs!

Gadget Lab's Charlie Sorrel was impressed:

I gave it a try, and the gestures are even better than those in Apple's own browser, Safari...

On my old (multibody?) MacBook Pro, the gestures are all supported. The "pinch-to-zoom" differs from Safari's in that it will keep zooming as you move your fingers -- in Safari, each pinch motion only gives one level of zoom meaning you need to repeat the gesture to zoom more than one level.

The twist-to-switch-tabs gesture works a lot better than you'd think, including wrap-around so that once you get to the last tab, another clockwise tweak brings you to the first tab.

I'm distrustful of Firefox upgrades after being burned after every upgrade as yet another indispensable extension defuncts, otherwise I'd give it a go. Anyone in our readership taken it for a spin?

Firefox Adds Multitouch Gestures for Macs [Gadget Lab]

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  1. I’ve been running 3.2b1 build 2 for several days now *specifically* for this feature – and I LOVE it. It’s soooo natural to be able to swipe to go forward/back. 3 finger swipe to the top and bottom work great. I love it all.

    I patched the Addons that I use (Greasemonkey, DownThemAll, etc.) that didn’t list 3.2.* support so that they’d work – all work flawlessly so far.

  2. You can already do this on previous gen Macs with any browser using a free program called MultiClutch. I can go back and forward by swiping left or right, switch tabs using rotate left or rotate right, open a new tab by pinching out and close the current tab by pinching in. The program lets you choose everything and also somehow unlocks 3 finger swiping up and down. I set swipe down to use the “All windows” feature of Expose and swipe up clicks my stumble button for me. There’s also zoom in-zoom out and zoom out-zoom in that I haven’t assigned to anything. It works globally and for specific applications. It’s lots of fun.

  3. @#2: I tried MultiClutch on my computer (MBP 15″, but not the super new one – previous gen) but had usability issues with it.

    Namely MultiClutch sometimes would and sometimes wouldn’t work.

    Pinch/Grow in the new build does font increase/decrease for size.

    I agree that MultiClutch is great, but if it’s not a pure Cocoa app, it seems to have some issues.

  4. I have the same version of the MBP that Pudquick has. I was instantly happy to see multitouch built into the hardware, and then just as easily disappointed at the lack of implementation. How can you not have a multitouch prefpane in Safari? Or on a smaller scale, just some kind of multitouch command for switching tabs?

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