Feeds

Zona says MS browser war victor: Oops! Another monopoly…

Stop me before I monopolise again

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

MS on Trial With exquisite timing, Zona Research has announced the end of the browser wars. Microsoft won, and a dead-pan Zona says there's no need to carry on chasing market share stats. But being declared the victor is hardly going to be an unalloyed pleasure for Microsoft. The company took flak for many things in Judge Jackson's findings of fact on Friday, but the section on Microsoft's campaigns against Netscape is particularly long and comprehensive. The good judge is of the opinion that Microsoft set out to hunt Netscape out of the browser market, and systematically eliminated it from distribution channels. So when Zona says Microsoft's IE chalked up a 64 per cent score as the primary browser of choice in October, against 36 per cent for Navigator, you can't help sub-consciously adding "and that's because..." Zona says that corporate browser policy has been an important factor in narrowing the market from nine browsers four years ago to two now. Today 73 per cent of companies have policies, with 69 per cent of them specifying IE and 31 per cent Navigator. At this point it's worth reprising Zona's report from a year ago. Then there was a clear difference between individual users, 60 per cent of whom preferred Netscape, and corporates - 54 per cent of those with a policy specified IE. Netscape's share of user hearts and minds was then up on the previous month. Today, Zona says: "We are witnessing a shift away from the importance of the browser technology to the content on the Internet. It is not surprising that the two dominant browser vendors now play a significant role in the burgeoning content marketplace. The question is how will the content war play itself out?" That is, the browser has become irrelevant, it's merging into the background. But how it got merged into the background is a matter for the judge. Here's what Zona said a year ago: "We see from this study that 84 per cent of IE in use as the primary browser is policy-driven. We believe this significant increase [in IE's share] is largely due to the fact that IE 4.0 is an integral part of Windows 98, that Microsoft has continued to make inroads in the corporate marketplace, and numerous distribution agreements with service providers and other software vendors." That is, Microsoft has succeeded by integrating the browser, thus making IE a no-brainer choice for customers, and by sewing up the other distribution channels via contra deals. Which we believe is what the judge said. Oh dear. ® Complete Register Trial coverage

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.