Google rules out developing Web browser

Google’s Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt has ruled out the development of browser software by the search giant, in the short term.

In a conference call with financial analysts yesterday Schmidt denied plans for direct competition with Microsoft’s dominant Internet Explorer, reports Reuters.

‘It looks like people have some good browser choices already,’ the agency quotes Schmidt. ‘We would not build a browser for the fun of building a browser.’

While Firefox can claim an approximate ten per cent market share, Internet Explorer is still recording almost 90 per cent of browser usage (see here and here).

Google co-operates with a range of partners, Schmidt maintained, such as Apple and its Safari browser for Macs, and Opera and its offering for mobile devices.

However, the possibility of future development is not completely ruled out. ‘We would only do something … if we thought there was a real end-user benefit,’ Schmidt is reported as adding.

In the past, Google has lent its weight to the Mozilla-backed project, but it has also benefited from Firefox developers jumping ship to the Mountain View colossus, with Firefox’s lead engineer, Ben Goodger, being a prime example.

In his blog, following his move, Goodger declared: ‘My role with Firefox and the Mozilla project will remain largely unchanged, I will continue doing much the same work… with the new goal of successful 1.1, 1.5 and 2.0 releases. I remain devoted full-time to the advancement of Firefox, the Mozilla platform and web browsing in general.’

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