How's this for irony - Internet Explorer 8 is Microsoft's best browser to date and, save for IE7, might be the company's most ambitious update to the IE series yet, but for the first time in over a decade, IE's market share appears to be in trouble.
According to StatCounter, a free online stats tool, Internet Explorer has coughed up 11.4 percent of the browser market share since March. This despite IE8 continuing to show strong growth, though much of that growth is coming at the expense of IE7, as Microsoft has been aggressively pushing its latest browser version.
Mozilla's Firefox, Apple's Safari, and Google's Chrome browsers are the ones responsible for 'stealing' away IE users in the past three months, with Firefox claiming at least half of the IE defectors.
What browser are you using? Hit the jump and sound off.
"We will try to narry down any important bugs that were missed, or were regressions from Firefox 3.5, and get them into a point update quickly," reads a post on quality.mozilla.org.
Some 55 known bugs exist in the latest release, some of which will be addressed in Firefox 3.5.1 expected to be released by the end of the month.
Far be it for Microsoft to shy away from hiring known celebrities to pitch its products, as was the case with hiring Jerry Seinfeld as its OS pitchman. But now the software maker is looking to push Internet Explorer 8 in the cutthroat browser wars, and it's getting a bit of help from TV Superman Dean Cain. Oh, and there's puking too.
So far there are a total of four adverts, each one starring Dean Cain as the on-screen narrator. But it's the fourth video in the series that will get all the attention for its vivid portrayal of a woman puking after viewing something apparently offensive online - or maybe she's a Houston Rockets fan and just read up on Yao Ming's foot.
After several delays, beta releases, release candidates, and even a version number change (Mozilla originally intended to call its next browser release 3.1), Firefox 3.5 is finally available for download as an official release.
In addition to better performance, Firefox 3.5 sports a heaping handful of new features, some of which include Private Browsing mode, Open Video and HTML support with cool tricks like augmented video, location aware browsing, better add-on management, and more.
Mozilla is also hoping that Firefox 3.5 will help them champion the open HTML5 standard, and start putting a dent in proprietary video technologies such as Adobe Flash or Windows Media. HTML5 has seen a lot of support from third party browser developers lately, and could prove to be a very capable and flexible alternative. “Somebody has to take a stand” said Mozilla senior platform engineer Damon Sicore. "Somebody has to put open video on the Web. It's important that these formats are unencumbered. We feel that it's something that's in our mission that we have to do to keep them moving forward, in keeping the Web open."
Have you been playing with the Beta or RC version of Firefox 3.5, or do you like to wait for the final release?
Much has been made recently over HTML 5, the next major revision of the web's core language and what some refer to as the second coming of the web. But will HTML 5 be the the death knell for rich Internet application (RIA) technologies like Adobe's Flash? Not happening, says Adobe.
"I think the challenge for HTML 5 will continue to be how do you get a consistent display of HTML 5 across browsers. And when you think about when the rollout plans that are currently being talked about, they feel like it might be a decade before HTML 5 sees standardization across the number of browsers that are going to be out there," Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen said during a quarterly financial call.
Not only does Adobe feel HTML 5 is a decade away from having any kind of real impact, but Adobe says HTML 5 will benefit Flash, just as "Silverlight's launch helped to boost the popularity of Flash." According to Adobe, the recent publicity surrounding HTML 5 brings RIA technologies to the forefront of everyone's mind, putting Adobe's Flash in a position to "deliver on those heightened expectations."
Google on Monday released an update to its Chrome browser, bringing the current version to 188.8.131.52. The update -- which Chrome users should have received automatically -- fixes a critical security issue and two other networking bugs, Google says.
Prior to the update, Chrome was vulnerable to a buffer overflow in certain responses from HTTP servers. When exploited, a hacker could not only crash the browser, but potentially run code with the privileges of the logged on user.
Far less dangerous are the pair of networking bugs squashed with the latest update. No longer will NTLM authentication to Squid proxies fail when trying to connect to HTTPS sites, and Chrome should no longer crash when loading some HTTPS sites.
Mozilla, who still plans to release Firefox 3.5 by the end of the month, took one step closer to that goal on Friday by finally making available the first Firefox 3.5 Release Candidate (RC). Prior to Friday, lingering bugs had forced Mozilla to delay the RC rollout on more than one occasion.
If you've already installed Firefox 3.5 Beta 4, you should receive an offer to update to the RC automatically. If not, try using the "Check for Updates" option under the "Help" menu.
In just a couple of days, Mozilla will make available a release candidate (RC) for its upcoming Firefox 3.5 browser, and according to Pocket-Lint.com, a final version is expected by the end of the month.
Firefox 3.5 -- which trails in release behind Microsoft's Internet Explorer 8 and Apple's Safari 4 -- sports a number of improvements, over 5,000 according to Mozilla. Some of the more notable features include private browsing, a faster rendering engine, geolocation functionality, and better tab management.
Already looking ahead, Mozilla's next browser, currently codenamed Namoroka, will take a page from Google's Chrome and utilize process isolation features. There will also be a 64-bit version of Firefox for OSX users.
Last night, Opera released an alpha build of Opera Unite and, to hear them tell it, reinvented the internet in the process. With a claim as big as that, we think it's important to take a good, hard look at Opera Unite
—what is it, what can it do, and will it really change the way we use the web?
So first, what is Opera Unite? Basically, it's a version of the Opera browser with built-in server software, which allows users of Opera Unite to send data (everything from text to multimedia) directly to other people on the web, even if they're using a different browser, and all without having to upload anything to a traditional server. Opera's billing this as a way to get free yourself from the tyranny of the datacenter, allowing you to share pictures without having to put them on a strangers computer, network socially without having to subject yourself to Facebook's terms of service, collaborate without relying on the Google Docs server and so on and so forth.