Mozilla Firefox Add-ons hit 3 billion downloads

Look at your Firefox browser on your laptop or phone. It’s likely been tweaked-out with the perfect pallete of colors and acts just the way you want. Since those add-ons became available in 2004,  more than 3 billion have been downloaded — more than the entire Internet user base and nearly half of the world’s population –Mozilla announced Thursday.

“More than 85 percent of Firefox users have at least one add-on installed,” Mozilla’s Erica Jostedt wrote. Of those Firefox users who have add-ons installed, most have five customizations. AdBlock Plus is the most popular add-on, followed by Firebug, NoScript, Personas Plus and Video DownloadHelper. Privacy, security and search top the most popular categories of add-ons.

The add-ons were introduced in 2004 and then went mobile in 2009 as more consumers browsed by phone. Today, there are more than 150,000 collections of Firefox add-ons, such as Family Organizer, Sports Fanatic and the Paranoid Kit. More there are more than 25,000 Firefox add-on developers, Mozilla said.

Firefox may be feeling the heat from Google Chrome’s growing competition. However, the free browser isn’t standing still. Along with featuring a major recent update for Android smartphones, it still can claim dominance over Internet Explorer, the previous desktop champion.