Mozilla could be developing a new web browser that accepts voice commands. A listing for an all-hands internal meeting has just surfaced, revealing the team's latest project: Scout.
"With the Scout app, we start to explore browsing and consuming content with voice," states the listing. From the looks of it, Scout seems to be a web browser that can be controlled via voice commands, but Mozilla's phrasing is largely vague and ambiguous. What exactly does it mean by browsing and consuming content through the use of voice?
A Voice-Controlled Web Browser Made By Mozilla?
As such, it remains uncertain what the platform may end up doing, as the meeting is focused more on technical matters, such as requirements for a browser that would be able to read an article about polar bears out loud.
While that certainly sounds exciting, it's hardly innovative. Text dictation isn't too hard to come by these days — Apple, for one, boasts system-wide dictation on macOS, and there's also VoiceOver on iOS, tvOS, and watchOS — but suppose Mozilla integrates the feature in a way that'll make it more streamlined, then that would certainly be more interesting.
Mozilla Is Developing A Voice Platform
Scout is likely at the early stages of development, as Engadget speculates. At this point, Mozilla is still discussing the "architecture and key components needed for a voice platform," according to the listing, and it's unclear when the team plans to share more news. When asked about Scout and its other plans, a Mozilla spokesperson didn't offer much clarification, just a boilerplate response, as CNET reports:
"We look forward to discussing these efforts publicly when they are further developed."
If Scout ends up being a voice-controlled browser as speculated, that means Mozilla would be joining Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and every other company fawning over voice-enabled platforms. Choosing to implement it into a web browser is a wise move, though, given Mozilla's experience building one of the best web browsers currently in existence.
At this point, it's not really clear how — or if — voice controls would enhance the browsing experience, but it's an interesting idea to ponder at the very least.
Right now, Mozilla is also hard at work trying to reinvigorate the Firefox brand. A big part of such a comeback are the recently released Quantum versions of its web browser, which are supposedly better than Google Chrome in a number of ways. The first version arrived in November 2017, and since then, things have been looking great — apparently, Firefox is now being used 6 percent more than in the past, according to marketing boss Jascha Kaykas-Wolff.