Browsers are some of the most frequently used apps on smartphones. They’re second only to social media apps and most popular social media apps have their own built-in browser. The built-in browsers make sure users don’t switch apps just to view external links. Of course, these browsers aren’t feature rich and many make for a poor reading experience. In most cases, a mobile browser offers a superior reading experience. This is something developers of browsers are aware of and strive to take advantage of it. Safari for example, has a neat reader mode. In that same vein, Firefox for iOS has just added a new night mode. You can enable night mode in Firefox and it will automatically add a dark grey overlay to your screen which makes reading exponentially easier.
Enable Night Mode In Firefox
Night Mode is a new feature in Firefox added via an update. You must be running version 8.0.1 of the app to use night mode. Open a new tab and tap the hamburger icon at the bottom of the screen. A small window will appear with a set of controls. Look for the Night Mode toggle and tap it.
You can see the difference in the screenshot below. The tab on the left is with night mode disabled. The tab on the right shows the same web page with night mode enabled. Once you enable night mode, it’s enabled for all tabs that you open. You cannot enable night mode in Firefox on a per-tab basis.
To disable night mode, tap the hamburger icon again in any tab and tap the night mode toggle to disable.
Night Mode vs Night Shift
Firefox’s night mode plays extremely well with night shift in iOS. Text is still legible and easy to read when you have night shift enabled on your iPhone and night mode enabled in Firefox. What’s more impressive is how well the night mode works with your device’s screen brightness. If you increase the brightness of your screen all the way up, Firefox’s night mode will overwrite it. Your screen’s brightness remains dimmed. If however you turn brightness all the way down and have night mode enabled in Firefox, the screen does get dimmer.
Firefox can also overwrite auto-brightness in iOS. Basically, any setting in iOS that forces you to look at an uncomfortably bright screen is overridden when you enable night mode in Firefox. While this is pretty awesome for a browser, it’s concerning because Apple doesn’t like apps that overwrite the default iOS functionality.