Can a single browser made by no single company and without any real marketing dollars actually cure all of the web’s woes? Probably not, but the team behind the increasingly popular FireFox browser are certainly going to make a run for it. Thankfully, they aren’t the only ones. Standing behind them are more than 10,000,000 devoted fans, fanatics, radicals and soccer moms.
As we noted last week, FireFox is definitely making its mark on the Internet. Nearly 10,000,000 downloads in its first week. A “security and standards first” mentality. A commitment to its user base. These are traits the web has never really seen from a mainstream browser company or product.
Here at eBCVG we don’t like to take sides on anything, with the possible exception of Rugby League rugby, and we aren’t taking sides in this little David vs. Goliath battle. However, it is hard not to get excited about The Little Browser That Could… Hopefully.
Ultimately we believe that competition is good. Very good. Competition made Internet Explorer the undefeated king of the web for half a decade. The hope is that after this little turf war is done it will transform the web once again, and really we don’t care who comes out on top as long as consumers win out in the end.
The FireFox team has borrowed some fantastic innovations and made them mainstream: tabbed browsing, download managers, popup blockers, a better security model and better developer tools. Innovations that Microsoft’s newly repurposed Internet Explorer team can’t help but take note of. Microsoft will, being Microsoft, put their own slant on everything and may even find a solution which is more elegant than what FireFox has come up with.
But, really, that isn’t the point. It’s quite likely that without FireFox we wouldn’t have seen very much innovation for Internet Explorer, outside of Longhorn. Ever.
So, it is with quite a bit of glee that we aren’t just cheering for FireFox, we’re actually cheering for competition. We really don’t care who wins, as long as consumers win.