Happy Third Birthday, Chrome!

First released on September 2, 2008, Chrome is credited with fueling the browser speed race to accelerate JavaScript as well as a trend that removed the focus on complex menus and shifted it to more space for web content.

Chrome has not been an instant hit. It took Google over half a year to collect more than 2 percent market share as users took time to adjust to the radically different look of the minimalist interface. However, since the second quarter of 2009 Chrome has been adding market share from its rivals IE and Firefox aggressively and has recently broke the 23 percent mark, according to StatCounter. At the current pace, Google will surpass Firefox in November at the 26 percent mark and could exceed IE's share by mid-2012 at about 32 percent.

As Mozilla challenged Microsoft in 2004 with Firefox and reignited a browser war we thought was long gone, it is Google that has been fueling the battle with a rapid innovation cycle in web browsers that has caused more than one headache for Microsoft and Mozilla. Both have responded to Google's speed and interface challenge and significantly accelerated their browsers. Mozilla recently also adopted Google's rapid release cycle model that unveils a new browser version available every six months. Microsoft has also cut its release cycle in half and is generally believed to be on a 1-year release cycle, instead of the previous 2-year cycle (Microsoft does not officially comment on its release cycle).

While the business model of Chrome as well as the Chrome-based Chrome OS is questioned, Chrome has become a critical component in Google's structure that protects core revenues. Chrome users are strongly tied to the use of Google's search engine and are seen as key in shielding Microsoft's attempts to attract search advertising business to Bing. Google said that there are currently 160 million active Chrome users.

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  • eddieroolz
    While I may have been a vocal critic of Google and Chrome at times, I must congratulate Chrome on its third birthday. You've come a long way and did indeed accelerate the browser wars.
  • Other Comments
  • stm1185
    Well Google's plan to get people away from using Bing with Chrome has failed at least once as I set Bing as the default search engine.

    Take that Corporate Brand Identity Stooges!
  • legacy7955
    Ever since the Black Bar of Distraction showed up on the Google Web Search page I've refused to use it. I now use Alta Vista as my home page. PS iHATE Eric Schmidt, Larry Page, and "the Wiggo" Chris Wiggins.
  • legacy7955
    otacon723 years and it's on version 14...LOL

    While Google Chrome is still better and faster than the others I think it is getting slower not faster as time goes by. They are adding features and this is slowing it down gradually.

    So who is going to create the next "light weight super fast" browser? .