Mozilla collaborates with Samsung on new browser engine and language

Open source software player Mozilla has revealed it is collaborating with Samsung on a web browser engine called Servo.

The engine is Mozilla’s attempt to rebuild the web browser from the ground up on modern hardware, the firm said. It hopes to address the issues that cause security vulnerabilities when designing the platform. The engine’s code is written in Rust, a systems language that has been in development for several years by Mozilla and a community of open source enthusiasts.

The language is intended to fill many of the same niches that C++ has over the past decades, but is more secure than other programming languages, Mozilla said. Rust also has features that make it easier for programmers to extract more from multi-core chips, according to Mozilla.

“We are now pleased to announce with Samsung that together we are bringing both the Rust programming language and Servo, the experimental web browser engine, to Android and ARM,” said Brendan Eich, CTO at Mozilla.

“This is an exciting step in the evolution of both projects that will allow us to start deeper research with Servo on mobile. Samsung has already contributed an ARM backend to Rust and the build infrastructure necessary to cross-compile to Android, along with many other improvements.”

At Mobile World Congress this year, Mozilla showed off its new HTML5-based smartphone OS.

Telecom Italia CEO Franco Bernabé said that operators will “benefit from more control over the ecosystem while Cesar Alierta of Telefónica said that the new OS would “change the prevailing value chain”.

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