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Microsoft Internet Explorer is losing market share, says a new study from research organisation NetApplications. It's shrunk to 60% of the world market for browsers.

This has a number of implications. First the financial. Browsers make money by selling links - you know that little box at the top right hand corner? Search for something on that, click a sponsored link and your Browser provider gets a cut.

That, if IE's market share is falling, is Microsoft's problem. What's going to be everybody else's problem is the compatibility issue. I've just been helping a friend test a new website, for example. It worked fine in IE for him.

Now, good practice says you always test with different browsers. Why would you expect my site to work with all of them unless you've tried it? But many people , particularly the cheaper developers, don't bother - and given the proliferation of minority browsers that's perhaps reasonable enough.

So my colleague's site wouldn't let me sign up a test membership because the 'enter' button didn't work. In Firefox, on a Mac. Suddenly this doesn't look the small, minor niggle it might have been a few years back - and Web development has gained a layer of complexity as a result.

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