Mozilla set to compete with Google for developers' Web Apps

The battle of the web app stores is hotting up this week, without any of them being formally released.

Mozilla, the open-source foundation behind the Firefox web browser, have proposed a “prototype of an Open Web App Ecosystem” and open-sourced the code behind it. The Web App Ecosystem differs from Google’s proposed solution in that it is designed to be entirely cross-platform and cross-browser, where Google’s store only currently works with Chrome.

Mozilla’s Web App Ecosystem comes with addons to enable extra features in certain browsers – such as searching, notifications, and better integration with the browser UI. It also supports self-published web apps, along with paid and free apps you see in the Chrome Web Store – implying it is to take a more distributed, open, standards-based approach over Google’s venture. Mozilla have published a sample App Store, App Directory, and all of the documentation on the Mozilla Labs site. The code is also available to clone on GitHub.

Meanwhile, it is rumoured that the launch of the Chrome Web Store is imminent following today’s release of Chrome 7 as a stable version of Google’s browser. Microsoft’s only meaningful contribution to the space is the “Pinned Sites” feature of Internet Explorer 9, where sites may specify custom window chrome colours and Jump List actions when pinned to the Windows 7 taskbar.

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