We all know how annoying adds can be when browsing the web, especially without an ad blocker. But most sites rely on the income related to advertising in order to remain operational.
Mozilla might have the solution for some of these websites. Just last month, the company revealed it would offer a paid version of its popular Firefox browser, later confirming it on its website, and providing us with more details. The ad-free access will cost $4.99 per month and will provide an ad-free view of some journalism websites, featuring the slogan: “Support the sites you love, avoid the ads you hate.”
The company gave its official statement regarding the matter, saying “We’ve partnered with some of the world’s greatest publishers to bring you a better journalism experience. We share your payment directly with the sites you read. They make more money which means they can bring you great content without needing to distract you with ads just to keep the lights on.”
Other features will also be included in the premium service, like audio versions of articles (great for when you’re walking), synced bookmarks across all of your devices, recommended reading picks, and a content discovery app. Most of these are features can already be added to Firefox for free by using add-ons, but these could be useful for people who don’t trust third party developers or for someone who doesn’t want to waste time searching for add-ons. There will also be a reading synchronization system, where Firefox will pick up articles where you left off, even if you change devices. This feature is already found on reading apps like Pocket, but having it built into a browser is a plus.
Mozilla plans to allow free Firefox browser users continued free access to the current slate of browsing services they use now. Mozilla’s premium browsing services were revealed in an interview with Mozilla’s CEO Chris Beard.
Beard offered up a few details about Firefox’s future premium service, mentioning that it could include services such as VPN bandwidth access or “something like a secure storage solution.” Beard described a possible version of the premium VPN service, saying “We have tested also VPN. We can determine if you’re in a public Wi-Fi and do online banking and say: ‘Wow, you should really use VPN.’ You can imagine that we will offer a solution, for which we give everyone a certain amount of free VPN bandwidth and offer then a premium level via a monthly subscription.” Beard assured that Mozilla wouldn’t be taking away any current free services from free Firefox users, even after the premium subscriptions roll out. Beard commented on the matter, saying “Now, we still want to make it clear: There is no plan to demand money which is now free of charge for things. So, we will roll out a subscription service and offer a premium level,” he said.
The company confirmed that the ad-free experience will be available on both desktop and mobile browsers. The payment structure works will probably have you paying a single monthly fee for ad-free browsing on all of your devices, which will prove of great use for people with multiple devices, who are presumably the target audience.
The service isn’t available yet, but you can fill in a survey that will allow you to be notified as soon as the beta launches. The interview with Mozilla’s CEO Chris Beard suggested that Mozilla’s first premium browsing plan may be introduced in October.