Since being added to Firefox, I have not spent a lot of time talking about App Tabs. What are they? Well, in a nutshell – they help you keep pages you visit or want to keep track of – extremely handy. When you make a tab an App Tab, it shrinks it down to just the favicon of whatever website it is. For example, you could set Gmail up to be an App Tab and then it would shrink down to just show you the Gmail envelope favicon.
It saves screen real estate – so that is extremely helpful to some of us who run maybe 5 or 6 windows at a time. So, how do you make a tab an App Tab? It is really quick and easy to do. All you need to do is right-click on the tab you want to turn into an App Tab and select “Pin as App Tab” from the menu. To remove it, simply close your browser or select “Unpin Tab” from the menu.
Here are a few more examples from Mozilla on how App Tabs are different from regular tabs:
- App Tabs are small – only showing the site’s icon, not its title – and they live on the left side of the Tab Strip.
- App Tabs don’t have a close button so you can’t accidentally close them.
- You can still close them by right-clicking on them and selecting Close Tab from the menu.
- App Tabs notify you with a blue highlight when they change.
- If you have Gmail set as an App Tab, for example, and you are using a different tab when a new email is received, your Gmail tab will glow.
- All of the App Tabs you have set when you close Firefox will open as App Tabs when you start Firefox again.
- Links to other websites open in a new tab so that your App Tab doesn’t change.
- Many web apps, like Facebook, already do this but an App Tab will make this happen even when the website isn’t set to do it.
App Tabs give you one more way to organize the websites you want to view in your browser to make your internet browsing experience better. Have you found App Tabs handy in Firefox? Let me know how you are using them.