When you browse the internet on a daily basis, do you ever take the time to consider how this is all possible? The browser you use makes a large impact on the “surfing” experience, and there are a number of companies just itching to persuade you to use their “surfboard”. At the moment, its safe to say that Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari (from Apple) and Google Chrome are the big boys at present. It didn’t start that way though – please take a look at the Evolution of Web Browsers to find out where this all began:
- 1991 – Oh the start of the 90’s. A glorious and colourful time when technology began to break the barriers and steamroll forward. The WorldWideWeb browser was the first released, and later renamed to Nexus. The browser was developed by Tim Berners-Lee, who you all should know, as he invented the World Wide Web.
- 1993 – Two years had rolled by and the internet had been spreading on a massive scale, which resulted in the general public looking for a way to explore. Mosaic is widely accredited for popularising the internet with the man in the street, and many browsers today still use a similar design concept.
- 1994 – Marc Andreessen split from Mosaic to form his own company, called Netscape. Here he released the first commercial web browser which was dubbed the Netscape Navigator.
- 1995 – Microsoft took a giant step into the market with the release of Internet Explorer. This would kick off a battle for browsing supremacy, which Microsoft would win for a considerable amount of time.
- 1998 – After just three years, Netscape had lost considerable ground against IE and decided to release the source code of Communicator. The company would go on to start the open source Mozilla project, a move that put them back in the running.
- 2002 – Microsoft were at the top of their game by now, holding a 95 percent share in the market – and of course it came standard with the Windows operating system for supreme convenience.
- 2003 – Apple’s rise in popularity was in full flow and their Safari browser made its debut.
- 2004 – Mozilla’s hard work had paid off as they released Firefox 1.0 which immediately gained interest from users. Microsoft had been too comfortable with their lead and the release of Firefox made them spring into action.
- 2008 – present: Search giant, Google, was feeling a little left out so they decided to introduce the super-fast Google Chrome. This has resulted in a four-way battle for supremacy in the last three years, with each company releasing improved versions and features as the war rages on.