I never saw this day coming, but now that it did, I am very impressed.
The European Union, believing that “not knowing you have a choice is no choice at all“, has made Microsoft integrate a Browser Choice window in their operating system for both new users and existing Windows PC users. This screen will provide users with a chance “to make an active choice in the source of the software that acts on your behalf to broker your online experiences, and meet your own unique needs and interests.”
This decision ends a long-running dispute over the US software giant’s dominant market position. This “browser choice screen” will present users with a list of leading browsers — including Mozilla’s Firefox, Apple’s Safari and Google’s Chrome — presented in a random order. The screen will be offered as an automatic download for XP, Vista, and Windows 7.
The screen gives the user three options:
- To simply “Install” any of the leading browsers listed.
- To “Learn More” information about any of these browsers.
- To “Select Later” – possibly inducing an endless loop for users who will always “Select later”, like I do with my updates.
You can read more about this on the European Firefox Community blog.
Victory for Better Softwares?
I am very happy to read about this news because come on, IE is probably the worst browser out there, and people use it most due to convenience rather than anything else. This decision from the EU will educate users and further give them the chance to browse the Internet with a much better tool.
The market percentages for browsers in February 2010, according to Net Applications analytics run as follows:
- Chrome: 5.61%, up 0.39% from January
- IE: 61.58%, down 0.54%
- Firefox: 24.23%, down 0.2%
- Safari: 4.45%, down 0.08%
- Opera: 2.35%, down 0.03%
Meanwhile, on a parting joke, check out this hilarious image that I randomly found on Flickr (click to expand):
What browser do you use? Do you think this was a good decision from the EU or are novice PC users better off with less choices?
Interested in browser wars? You might like this post on Thoughtpick: What is Google Chrome?