Firefox’s latest update brings native support for Apple’s Arm-based Macs

Firefox’s latest update brings native support for Macs that run on Apple’s Arm-based silicon, Mozilla announced on Tuesday. Mozilla claims that native Apple silicon support brings significant performance improvements: the browser apparently launches 2.5 times faster and web apps are twice as responsive than they were on the previous version of Firefox, which wasn’t native to Apple’s chips.

Mozilla says that if you’re already running Firefox on your Mac and want to make sure that you’re running the native build, you’ll need to update to the newest version, Firefox 84, and then quit and restart Firefox.

I’ve got a MacBook Air with Apple’s new M1 chip, so I installed the new Firefox update and gave it a whirl. It seems speedy enough, but I can’t conclusively confirm Mozilla’s claims about performance improvements in my few minutes of testing. (And to be fair, most things have been pretty speedy on this new Mac.)

Firefox’s support of Apple’s Arm-based processors follows Chrome, which added support for Apple’s new chips shortly after the M1-equipped MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and Mac mini were released in November.

Firefox 84 is also the last release to support Adobe Flash, which got its final scheduled update last week.