I was just reading on Blog on the Side that Firefox 2 is due on in October – a fact I must have missed along the way. In her post she links to about what Firefox will have to do to keep its market share up.
I love the fact that Firefox has 10% of the market which is more than Opera or Safari – but I agree with the author when he says:
But as Mozilla prepares for the October release of the next version of Firefox, the group is facing its biggest challenge yet: Going mainstream. Firefox’s share of the market, however impressive, has been flat after rapid growth in 2004 and 2005. Analysts say that’s because Mozilla has largely reached the natural Firefox constituency-hip college students, Microsoft haters, and tech geeks.
EXPLORER THREAT. To continue to grow, Firefox will have to start winning converts from the rest of Internet-using society. These are the people who don’t know or care what open source means, many of them assuming that all it takes to get on the Internet is clicking on that ubiquitous, oversized lowercase “e.” “The problem is Internet Explorer works,” says Geoff Johnston, analyst at Internet analytics company WebSideStory. “I don’t think they’ll ever get to 15%.”
Mozilla's order will only get taller once Microsoft releases the latest version of Internet Explorer, now available in test mode. The new Microsoft browser already contains many of the innovations that have set Firefox apart. These include “tabbed browsing,” or the ability to have several sites open at once without running several Internet windows. Microsoft has already followed other Firefox features, like pop-up blockers. Some fear Firefox could even lose market share.
Well Firefox fans (since I know most of my readers are using Firefox) it’s time to get our friends and family hooked – before the new IE hits desktops!