Firefox, once the darling of the tech and IT crowd is slowly but surely losing love from the same people who used it because of the crappy Internet Explorer. In the years since it launched, Firefox has become a browser loved and used by a broader range of people. At one point of time, Firefox looked all set to conquer the world and overtake IE.
However, in the past two years, a browser called Google Chrome has been making dents into both Firefox and IE’s market share. The browser which is barely 2 years old almost has 10% market share. This is definitely something that is worth talking about.
So where is Chrome winning users from? Chrome is winning over the same users that Firefox stole from IE, the tech and IT crowd. This has been made more than clear with recent Tech powerhouse sites like TechCrunch and Techmeme reporting that most of their users now use Google Chrome, pushing Firefox to the second position.
So why this change? When Firefox came out more than 6 years ago, it brought about a fresh perspective to a software in which we spent most of our time in on a computer. It also introduced add-ons which made our lives easier. However, with all those additions, Firefox in itself started to become bloated, eating precious memory and CPU.
Once Chrome came in, it defined a minimalistic approach to browsing. It got rid of unwanted toolbars and presented users with a simple way of browsing and searching. It also brought a much more sleeker look which helped users focus more on what they needed to have rather than what they should have had.
One of the key reasons people I had talked to who were not switching to Chrome was the lack of extensions, which made them stick with Firefox. However, once Chrome came out with extensions, many users switched to it. Top that with cloud sync and security and it made Chrome a darling of the tech crowd.
Frankly speaking, for the past two years I have used Firefox only when necessary. I hate the fact that it is so bloated that it makes me less productive than I would like to be.
I would say that Mozilla and Nokia are two similar companies who were sitting on the top of the pile, but have been struggling to keep up ever since competition has cropped up. I admit that Firefox 4 does provide a better experience, however, people would now ask the question; Why should I switch to Firefox 4 from Chrome when they have delaying it for so long and Chrome is dedicated to adding features every 6 weeks?
Once again, Chrome is bound to grow leaps and bounds in the future. With the Google Web Store around the corner, it would bring more and more people towards it. Alas, Firefox 4 is still a long way from release, hopefully once it comes out it should make the competition more even.
In the end, this is my honest opinion about a browser I loved at one point of time. I have been struggling to find reasons to use it now and I feel that several other users do the same which is why Chrome is gaining over Firefox. There are few questions though which only you can answer. Do you use Google Chrome? Do you prefer it over Firefox now? Would you switch back to Firefox 4 when it comes out? Do let me know your thoughts.