Chrome: Who Won, Who Lost

With the release of Google’s Chrome web browser, there’s bound to be people who will benefit from this and those who won’t. So let us look at who are the winners and losers.

Winner: Google

This is an easy pick. Google grabbed all sorts of positive ink and mindshare from the release of Chrome. Companies pay big bucks for the sort of media attention that Google received today. They should enjoy this while it lasts.

Loser: Microsoft

Given that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer hates Google with a passion, it would not surprise me if he threw a few chairs at the news of this browser. After all, this is just one more reason for people not to run Microsoft software. Plus it’s also is one more reason not to use Microsoft’s on-line services once people get a taste of Chrome.

Loser: Mozilla

Mozilla CEO John Lily put a brave face on today. But let us face facts. Google has a winner here. While it isn’t perfect, Chrome even in beta form does a bunch of things much better than Firefox. Sanboxing, isolated tabs, speed are all things that this browser excels at. Plus even in beta form, Chrome is (so far) more stable than Firefox with a much better user interface. Firefox likely won’t go away, but it has quite frankly received a kick in the groin.

Loser: Apple

Chrome uses Webkit as the rendering engine, and if you compare Chrome to Safari which also uses the Webkit engine, Safari loses. Largely for the reasons that I cited for Firefox being in trouble. Once Google gets rid of what bugs exist for this browser, you won’t have a reason to run Safari.

Winner: Apple

How can Apple be a loser and a winner at the same time? Simple. This expands the influence of Webkit engine. If Google sponsors aggressive Webkit development and doesn’t end up fighting Apple for control over the project, they both will win.

Loser: Opera

Opera has a tiny share of the browser market, which will be less now that there’s more competition. But they have been resilient seeing how long they’ve been around. So they may hang around a while, but be less relevant.

Winner: Internet Users Everywhere

Strong competition encourages innovaton. And Innovation is good for everyone. Watch how fast new enhancements appear now that Google has entered the browser market. That’s a good thing. Internet users should rejoice.

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