The final version of the Firefox 2.0 browser will be launched on Tuesday.

A spokeswoman for the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation, which maintains the open-source browser code, said the Release Candidate 3 (RC3) version of Firefox 2.0, which was posted for download on Monday has been doing well among users and is ready to be finalised as Firefox 2.0 for distribution.

"RC3 is substantially the same as the final release," the spokeswoman said. The final version will be branded as Firefox 2.0 and will be available for free download sometime on Tuesday afternoon. "That's definitely scheduled," she said.

The news comes days after Microsoft launched Internet Explorer 7.

Earlier this week, Mike Schroepfer, vice president of engineering for the Mozilla Foundation said that RC3 would become the final version of the Firefox 2.0 browser "if there are no showstoppers".

The first release candidate for Firefox 2.0 was available 26 September, while the second was released 6 October as developers sought additional input and bug reports from users.

In its latest study on browser use, last week said that global usage of Mozilla's Firefox browser stands at 11.49 per cent, down 1.44 per cent from its global usage in July, when Firefox use was heading upward. The global use of Internet Explorer browser is presently at 85.85 per cent, which has increased 2.8 per cent since July, according to OneStat.

In comparison, the global usage of Safari is 1.61 per cent, down 0.23 per cent from July.

New features of Firefox 2.0 include built-in anti-phishing controls, built-in RSS and XML feed-viewing capabilities, and a new inline spell checker.