Mozilla on Tuesday announced that Google had agreed to a new search referral deal with it, ending weeks of suspense over the search giant’s willingness to renew the deal ever since it expired last month and allowing the latter to remain the default search provider inside Firefox. This also brings to an end the recent speculation regarding the fate of Firefox, which was seen as being closely linked to the proceeds from the deal.
The cool thing about Mozilla's rapid release schedule for Firefox is that you never have to wait long for the next version to come out, which is a real boon if you want to play with the latest and greatest but aren't real keen on the thought of mucking around with beta code. And if you've been waiting around for Firefox 9 to go gold, your day has come.
Browser vendors are constantly on the lookout for things to brag about. While just about any type of bragging rights are welcome, vendors are mostly found crowing about either speed, security or HTML5 compliance. This time it’s Google’s turn to break into a victory lap, for Chrome has just been crowned the most secure browser in a study conducted by Accuvant Labs.
Mozilla is in the middle of a difficult phase. Chrome is said to have overtaken Mozilla Firefox in terms of market share and there is ongoing suspense over the open-source outfit’s lucrative search referral deal with Google. The latter in particular is being seen as a major concern, with almost 80 percent of Mozilla’s annual revenue at stake. All said, It’s just about the best time for a non-profit to remind everyone about its selfless goals and make a pitch for donations.
Firefox is in big trouble, there’s no point trying to sugarcoat the truth here folks. In addition to slipping from 25% to 22% in the most recent market share results, we are now also hearing word that the search partnership with Google which made up over 84% of the company’s revenues is about to expire, and may not be renewed. The Google deal according to Mozilla’s financial statements was set to expire at the end of November, and so far nobody at the company has confirmed any extensions.
At the rate things were going, it was only a matter of time before Google's Chrome browser skipped ahead of Mozilla Firefox, and according to at least one Web analytics company, it's finally happened. This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who's paid attention to the browser market. Chrome has been gaining ground ever since it was released, while Firefox long appeared to plateau, and even fall back a step a time or two.
Hey, have you heard about Twitter? It’s kind of a big deal. Apparently people use it to communicate in 140 characters, detailing revolutions, protests and intricacies of knitting free-ranged wool sweater for cats. Thanks to the service’s soaring worldwide popularity, there’s no shortage of applications designed to help get your tweets out, few are as easy to use as Twitter’s native homepage. Thanks to Twitter Address Bar Search for Firefox, leveraging the power of Twitter’s homepage has never been easier.
Over the years, Firefox has made the second position on browser market share charts all its own by refusing to budge either way. A few years ago, it was ridiculously difficult to even imagine a market scenario with Mozilla's browser at any place lower than number two. But the release of Chrome three years ago started threatening the improbability of such a scenario. Now, there is strong indication that the unthinkable might have already happened.
Ever since Adobe announced its decision to abandon the development of Flash for mobile devices, there has been a lot of speculation about the ubiquitous plugin’s future. While it’s difficult to tell exactly how much more time Flash has left to go, that it will be usurped by HTML5 is almost certain. In the meantime, browser vendors can hone their browsers’ HTML5 skills. This is what Mozilla has been doing for some time now. Now it’s readying yet another feature that will benefit Firefox’s overall HTML5 capabilities.
Amazon's HTML5-based Kindle Cloud Reader lets you read your Kindle books in your Web browser, a neat idea that's hampered by lack of widespread support, including Internet Explorer and Firefox. Well, Amazon is still shunning Internet Explorer (or vice versa), but the Kindle Cloud Reader does now work with Mozilla Firefox, along with existing support for Chrome and Safari (on the iPad and desktop).