Mozilla CEO talks about a future without WebKit requirement

'We’re always kind of working on it,' she said, when asked about a Mozilla browser for Apple devices not built on WebKit

Earlier this month, it was reported that with the antitrust pressure against Apple growing in the UK, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority is considering classifying the tech giant’s WebKit requirement as ‘anticompetitive.’

Competing browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox on iOS have been forced to use the WebKit rendering engine for their browsers. This is the same engine Apple’s Safari is built on, which limits the number of features that can be offered by competing browsers.

Reports suggest Apple will drop the WebKit requirement alongside iOS 17’s release later this year, and Mozilla is already preparing for it. “We’re always kind of working on it and looking at, ‘Well, what could we do if we had the ability to offer the product we want?’ So we’re always looking at it,” said Mozilla CEO Mitchell Baker in a recent interview with The Verge. “When we’re ready to talk about that, you’ll see it up here.”

Baker also noted that people are more willing to consider switching browsers on their phones than on other platforms and that something significant is needed to prompt users to change their browser.

“It’s not my wish in the world, but I think history shows us that you need something really significant now for people to think about changing their browsers. It’s deeply locked in, especially if you’re using Google or Microsoft systems,” said Baker.

Baker then expressed concerns over the closed nature of mobile phones, which extends beyond the WebKit requirement to things like system defaults. Mozilla has not engaged directly with Apple regarding these concerns, according to Baker.

Find The Verge‘s full interview with Baker here.

Image credit: Mozilla

Source: The Verge