Anne van Kesteren


I would just love if the following rumor was true: Google builds a browser based upon Mozilla. Of course, there is some evidence Google is going to build a browser, just whois and look at the results:

           Google Inc.
           1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
           Mountain View

The New York Post writes about Google hirering people: Based on the half-dozen hires in recent weeks, Google appears to be planning to launch its own Web browser and other software products to challenge Microsoft. See also: Will Google Launch A Browser? at /.

However, why would it be based upon Mozilla? They could come up with their very own browser of course. Well, there are some reasons. First, the Mozilla Developer day in August was held at Google Campus and second, people talk about it in Bugzilla.

See also my previous I would love it if Google…, More evidence of a Google browser and Gbrowser?


  1. But they've hired MS guys, not Mozilla guys. What's the betting any Gbrowser will actually be an IE6 skin (like the Avant browser) rather than Mozilla-based?

    Google use Linux for their servers to save money, but they've always been a Microsoft shop.

    Posted by RichardPW at

  2. In my opinion Richard is right. Also if Mozilla Developer day in August was held at Google Campus, the signs point to an IE6-Dumb-Something.

    Posted by Markus at

  3. This sounds good, and I'm really beginning to wonder what the browser scene will look like in a few years. I would be suprised if Google would choose to embed IE though. This would probably be a lot of work on an outdated piece of software while choosing for Mozilla would give them platform independence and Mozilla's powerful XPFE [Cross Platform Front End], which I think is quite usable in future webservices and technology like RDF. Developing a new look and features with it shouldn't be too difficult.

    And it could give a nice boost to Mozilla's codebase too ofcourse ;)

    Posted by Berend at

  4. Considering the amount of people who downloaded the Google searchbar/toolbar/(whatever you call it), which I hear is a lot, then I imagine a Google browser will be quite instantly popular even if it doesn't come bundled in an OS. Which'll just be awesome (if it's a good browser - moz or no moz). The browser scene sounds like it'll be good looking in a couple years and really press Microsoft to make IE render better.

    Posted by Devon at

  5. Oh, if they push IE out of the market I don't care if Microsoft does any improvements at all. However, I have seen some signs on www-style that IE has some QA people walking around who report to developers.

    Posted by Anne at

  6. Let's hope Google clean up their act and start serving up standards compliant HTML pages.

    Posted by Hemebond at

  7. Besides the popularity of Google (which can result in a lot of downloads of a posibily new browser) I don't think it's a good idea to create a new browser or a embeded version of IE or Mozilla.

    Because why doesn't Google work with Mozilla (Firefox) in some kind of way. When you put your hands together, you can use the brilliant peace of software (Firefox) from Mozilla and use the popularity of Google to promote it. And their you go, you'll have a far much stronger position against MS.

    Posted by Mark at

  8. I personally think they will be using the Gecko (Moz) engine as the basis for their browser. If anyone's ever taken the time to browse through Google's API documentation they might notice that you can connect to their powerful engine using SOAP. Having tools in the browser which feel native to the application but connect to such a powerful resource would probably push them down that route rather than trying to hack IE to do the same job. I know I've been toying with the idea. Think MAB for Google, incorporating Froogle, the translation tools, etc. Wow.

    They've probably hired the MSIE guys because of their experience in browser development, not because of their IE-specific knowledge. I wouldn't pre-judge these guys just because they're from the MSIE camp. I mean, how many developers have been forced to produce a product using a specific language/platform, knowing full-well that its just the wrong way to do things? I know I have. And how many times has re-implementation using this better method produced something which surpasses the original spec?

    Maybe they were more like hostages over at the MSIE camp rather than "the administration".

    Posted by Dysfunksional Monkey at

  9. I certainly hope they'd base it on Mozilla. It'd save them over $100,000,000. :-)

    What I'm wondering, though, is will it have any special features that might be specific to google? Not just something like an integrated search bar, but special interfaces for gmail, for example. That kind of thing could really force IE out of the market.

    Posted by dolphinling at

  10. What Dysfunksional Monkey said.

    I know one of the recent hires tangentially, and he's just a smart, non-ideological coder, plain and simple. Presumably he and his equally-smart colleagues will be able to build a product based on the actual business requirements, rather than the exact skillset they had in Summer 2004.

    And if it is true that Google and Microsoft, et al. are heading full tilt into the "search wars", it seems unlikely Google would choose to build their platform on IE, a technology is completely under the control of their rival. Competing directly with Microsoft in a major market on their home turf requires having some sort of strategy for reducing the impact of malicious OS or API changes. Picking IE as your isolation layer just seems suicidal.

    Posted by Evan at

  11. Looks like the Gbrowser won't see the light?

    Posted by Tinus at