With the Internet as advanced and popular as it is, it is only natural that companies would start competing to promote the best web browser available. A current list of web browsers shows many browsers currently available for different operating systems. However, this comparison is between two of the largest and most popular browsers on the market: Mozilla (Firefox browser) and Internet Explorer, native to the Windows operating system.
Firefox and Internet Explorer are two of the most popular web browsers currently in use. A report on browser statistics from w3schools.com shows that in August of 2009, Firefox made up 47.4 percent of user's browsers. Internet Explorer versions 6, 7 and 8 totaled 13.6 percent, 15.1 percent and 10.6 percent respectively.
The difference is the software itself. Internet Explorer is the default web browser with Microsoft Windows operating system, much like Safari is the default web browser for Macintosh OS. Firefox, however, does not come with either system. Users must visit Mozilla's website to download the browser before they can use it.
These small differences aside, the two are the same in that they are applications used to browse the Internet.
Internet Explorer Analyzed
Internet Explorer has been the dominant browser on the market for the duration of its life, part of its success having to do with it being the default browser on the world's most popular operating system. Most company websites and applications originally were developed to be compatible with Internet Explorer.
One of the main faults with Internet Explorer is its inability to render some pages in the correct way. What may look fine in one browser would look completely different in Internet Explorer. One of the largest issues with page rendering is the way Internet Explorer reads CSS files. An article on webcredible.co.uk shows the ways Internet Explorer reads the files and displays them in contrast to other browsers, but also gives handy tips on how to correct the issues.
Microsoft's browser has been more vulnerable to attacks by way of security holes, bugs and Active X-based add-ons. In 2008, many severe security flaws were found for Internet Explorer.
Despite the issues, Internet Explorer is quick, simple to use, easy to manage and an overall good choice for everyday use.
Firefox is a newer browser, and created by an independent company, rather than being a part of a larger company's operating system development. The first version of Firefox was released in November 2004, with its first major update in November 2005. Since then it has released two new versions, the latest being Version 3.5 in September 2009.
One of the things that makes Firefox so unique is its ability to install add-ons. From its website at addons.mozilla.org, users can choose from thousands of add-ons that do everything from give the user additional themes, give more media options and add to social networking experiences. This ability to customize to such a great extent has led to many good reviews of the browser itself. Firefox is also much better at rendering pages properly.
The Better Browser?
When it comes down to it, it is all up to the user's preferences. Users who use the Internet simply to check email or read the news may not see the need to download another browser simply to do the same thing. Internet Explorer accomplishes everything a basic to intermediate user may need. Firefox on the other hand is for users who may want or need more out of their browsing experiences: different themes for customization, add-ons to assist with website building and social networking sites.
The Future of Web Browsing
Many browsers on the market are competing for as much market share as they can get. Some of the biggest names on the market are Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Opera and Chrome (from Google), and those five currently dominate the browser market. The two largest competitors are Internet Explorer and Firefox themselves.
Firefox's current success could be attributed to Internet Explorer's shortfalls, as with each new Internet Explorer update, not enough seems to change to convince older users to start using it again. As more young-age users start to use the Internet, customization, speed and security is a must, and standards compliance is an added bonus for webmasters who don't like struggling to make their websites fit Internet Explorer's engine.
Internet Explorer is a great browser for basic use, but Firefox appeals to the users with more to do and more time spent online, and that is quickly becoming the norm.
- Photo Credit Google (No specific artist found)
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