Mozilla releases first nightly build of Firefox for Windows 10 on ARM

Mozilla has today released (opens in new tab) the first pre-release build of Firefox for the ARM64 architecture, making it the first third-party browser on Windows 10 to support Windows 10 on ARM natively. Today's release comes in the form of an early nightly build, which is an unfinished, untested, pre-release version of the Firefox web browser.

As such, this isn't an official launch of Firefox for Windows 10 on ARM just yet, but users are welcome to download the latest nightly builds for the ARM64 architecture to give them a whirl and report and bugs that may arise during use. Firefox Nightly is not intended to be used as a daily browser, and Mozilla says that this is especially the case with the ARM64 compiles of Firefox Nightly.

Please note that these builds are even nightlier than our normal nightlies on other platforms: they have not gone through our usual automated testing process, bugs are almost certain to crop up, etc. etc. That being said, I have been using builds off automation (manually updating them) for several weeks now and have had a pleasant experience.

Now that ARM support is being tested in the nightly branch for Firefox, it shouldn't be much longer before we see an official release of Firefox for Windows 10 on ARM. Chromium and Firefox are two web browsers we know are coming to Windows 10 on ARM in the near future, which should improve performance in these browsers when using them on an ARM devices.

Will you be downloading the Firefox Nightly build for Windows 10 on ARM? Let us know in the comments. You can download the Firefox Nightly for ARM64 installer here.

Thanks for the tip, Simon!

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • Is good to see devs put the effort and port their apps, I would like to see some games being ported to ARM too. We are seeing not only ARM getting supported but we are also seeing more and more major apps being available on the Windows Store. The future looks bright for Microsoft.
  • Indeed, IF (and it is a big if...) we eventually see some Windows ARM devices in a form factor that takes advantage of the smaller chipset. The day I can buy a sub 10 inch device (7 or 8 inch tablet or the Andromeda) is the day I get very interested in this browser and other ARM software. Until then, these ARM software releases are just a curiosity.
  • As Qualcomm invests more and more into the ecosystem, you're going to see more and more laptops with ARM, so software will be needed for not just small form factors.
  • People - me included - haven't given Firefox the respect it deserves. I just recently started using it on my Surface Go because I wanted to see if it was ready to finally replace Edge (Not because Edge is better overall, but it works great on low-end devices). I'm stunned at how great it works since last I checked. Performance is great, with pages loading quicker than Edge ever did. As they say, it seems faster! And there's the added bonus of greater compatibility with websites (Windows Central) included. And the impact to battery life hasn't driven me away yet. I know everyone likes to immediately scream Chrome for everything, but there are truly some software geniuses working at Mozilla, and Firefox Quantum is a great browser... unless you want to pinch to zoom and then you might as well boot up Edge.
  • This^
    I wonder why Firefox is often overlooked these days. Ever since quantum launched, I've been forced to consider it alongside Edge. It's really a very good browser. Chrome is a total no-go for me
  • For me it was the shift to the Australis UI that killed it. A non-customizable button bar that splits control elements in half (navigation buttons left from the address bar and everything else to the right) makes it a pain to use and is outright stupid. Plus i use more and more portable computers and i don't need a battery killer on them.
    I have since then switched to Palemoon on the desktop and never looked back. And for portable use i have Edge, which has the same crappy button layout as Firefox but is at least very power efficient.
  • Agreed. I've now switched, by default, to using Firefox / 1Password as my browser platform of choice on Windows, macOS and iOS and it all works great, with favourites syncing, good performance etc. Certainly, if you haven't given it a try, do. One tip I would give is that on Windows 10, customise the UI and you can choose 'big' tabs which makes it look much more like Edge and helps with touch.
  • Since Edge is soon to become a Chromium skin, Firefox is now particularly interesting. I just wish there was a compelling ARM device to use it on. Still waiting for a small tablet to drop so I can dump Atom.
  • I'm really hoping the MS Edge team can pull a miracle and preserve the touch fluidity and smooth scrolling even after switching to Chromium under the hood. Really worried we'll just end up with another chrome clone like Vivaldi et al which are all just not so good with touch.
    Firefox is actually quite good with touch, but Edge reigns supreme with touch and smooth scrolling.
  • Hi, did you notice any difference in battery life? I also have Surface GO and I am thinking about switching to Firefox, which I like.
    There are test's which comparing battery life but during playing videos but I am wondering how about a typical internet browsing?
  • If you are to believe Microsoft's own test, then Edge completely slaughters Firefox in battery tests. However, PC World ran their own tests and found Edge's lead wasn't nearly as dramatic as original claimed. I say go for it. Worst case scenario, Firefox doesn't perform the way you want and so you can quickly switch back to Edge.
  • I love Firefox, but in my experience it's pretty CPU intensive, so not good for battery life. I'm actually using Opera now, which is much better in that regard, and even has a built-in battery saver.
  • It' looks CPU intensive at first but open 10+ tabs and you will see a huge difference when using Chrome or even Edge!
  • @HeyCori. Edge could've been alot more but it needed o/s level updates which always hampered it's progression and not to mention the lack of resources given to the team. How else does one example the amount of time it took them to get extensions working for Edge? Edge does alot of things but the caveat is that these amazing functions are touch based and Windows 10 touch UX is sorely lacking.
  • If this version has the same high energy consumption as the x86 one then it's pointless (in December18 tests it managed 8 hours VS 16 of Edge). ARM devices are meant to be portable, and i don't need a browser on them that manages to cut autonomy by half.
  • So far, trying out the nightly build on my Lenovo Yoga C630 (Snapdragon 850), I am getting about the same battery life as Edge, about 14 hours or so. It actually seems snappier than Edge is most pages as well.
  • How are you finding the c630. Any good?
  • Since it can't be submitted to the store, it won't be available on Win10 S on ARM
  • Win10 is dead, bruh. Surprise!
  • It's a nightly build, not a full fledged release.
  • Yeah, I would imagine the final release would be in the store.
  • Luckily, you can easily switch to Home on pretty much any Win 10 in S mode device for free. Then you can download and try the nightly build.
  • Just switch to Home. Is not like it makes a difference. You just can use MS store apps and external apps when you need too.
  • Is pinch zoom still horrendous?
  • Yes. It's nice to have a native ARM alternative to Edge for sites that don't load correctly, but it's not a perfect replacement in tablet mode.
  • Pages not load correctly... about 1% of pages or less?! I use Edge on a daily basis and it is great. I don't need chrome at all! Its all about habits. And they don't change so easy.
  • From my experience I don't see the hate with Edge at all. YT works better on Chrome but it's not like is unusable on Edge and even the I can just apps like Tubecast and skip the ads by default.
  • Haven't used FireFox in years, but I might actually consider just because of this.
  • Firefox putting on the work! This was unexpected. If I see ARM Windows devices with a tablet form (optional keyboard, not attached to the device) I might consider picking one up in the future. I like iOS but I just prefer Windows on bigger screens.
  • Does it works on windows mobile 10?