Desmond File

Blog archive

Google Shines Up Chrome

Google today announced the beta release of its open source Chrome Web browser. Based on the WebKit rendering engine and featuring the new V8 JavaScript engine for accelerating the performance of JavaScript code, Chrome could quickly challenge Internet Explorer and Firefox as a leading Web browser.

As RDN Executive Editor Jeffrey Schwartz reports, industry analysts believe Google's Chrome will have an impact that extends far beyond the browser market. In an interview, IDC Program Director Al Hilwa described Chrome as "Google's platform play."

"It's really becoming the new operating system. And over time this is going to be a significant threat [to Microsoft]," Hilwa said. "Much like virtualization technologies, you are seeing browsers really coming back to being a disruptive force."

So disruptive, in fact, that I expect the Microsoft-Google battle to reach a whole new level over the next year or so. Google has spent a lot of time and effort to build out its platform base from search and ad serving to a robust suite of online applications and developer tools.

So make no mistake: Google Chrome is not just another Mozilla Firefox, a capable Web browser that could eat into IE's market share. Where the Mozilla Foundation's vision seems to have very clear and distinct limits, Google's ambition knows no bounds. Hilwa and other industry watchers fully expect Chrome to emerge as a full-fledged platform, and I'm certain that Microsoft executives are reaching the same conclusions.

What does it mean for developers? Well, I expect a surge of competitive activity as Google and Microsoft both sharpen their toolsets and release updated browser and platform software. I also expect Chrome will quickly achieve prominence, forcing dev shops to support yet another browser target. So the short-term result will be more work for Web developers.

Long-term? Well, you tell me. Can Google do what Netscape and others failed to accomplish, and unseat Windows? E-mail me at [email protected].

Posted by Michael Desmond on 09/02/2008 at 1:15 PM

comments powered by Disqus


  • Microsoft's Tools to Fight Solorigate Attack Are Now Open Source

    Microsoft open sourced homegrown tools it used to check its systems for code related to the recent massive breach of supply chains that the company has named Solorigate.

  • Microsoft's Lander on Blazor Desktop: 'I Don't See a Grand Unified App Model in the Future'

    For all of the talk of unifying the disparate ecosystem of Microsoft-centric developer tooling -- using one framework for apps of all types on all platforms -- Blazor Desktop is not the answer. There isn't one.

  • Firm Automates Legacy Web Forms-to-ASP.NET Core Conversions

    Migration technology uses the Angular web framework and Progress Kendo UI user interface elements to convert ASP.NET Web Forms client code to HTML and CSS, with application business logic converted automatically to ASP.NET Core.

  • New TypeScript 4.2 Tweaks Include Project Explainer

    Microsoft shipped TypeScript 4.2 -- the regular quarterly update to the open source programming language that improves JavaScript with static types -- with a host of tweaks including a way to explain why files are included in a project.

Upcoming Events