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Google and Mozilla: Partners, Not Competitors

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the one-big-happy-family dept.

Google 151

Much has been said about the (perceived) rivalry between Chrome and Firefox, but Google engineer Peter Kasting had enough when he read an article trying to discern Google's true motives for signing a new Firefox search deal. Kasting posted to Google+ to clarify what value the company sees in funding a "rival" browser. Quoting: "People never seem to understand why Google builds Chrome no matter how many times I try to pound it into their heads. It's very simple: the primary goal of Chrome is to make the web advance as much and as quickly as possible. That's it. It's completely irrelevant to this goal whether Chrome actually gains tons of users or whether instead the web advances because the other browser vendors step up their game and produce far better browsers. Either way the web gets better. Job done. The end. So it's very easy to see why Google would be willing to fund Mozilla: Like Google, Mozilla is clearly committed to the betterment of the web, and they're spending their resources to make a great, open-source web browser. Chrome is not all things to all people; Firefox is an important product because it can be a different product with different design decisions and serve different users well."

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151 comments

Google and Mozilla (5, Insightful)

InterestingFella (2537066) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487800)

So it's very easy to see why Google would be willing to fund Mozilla

That is true, but not for the reasons stated. Google is paying Mozilla around $100 million of commissions per year. By the very nature of the deal that relationship is poisoned. Note that Peter is an engineer, and it is very easy to say they want "better web" and stuff like that, but if Google could avoid paying $100 million a year, they would do so. It's better to put that money into their own product, and they really want to do that, but they can't because they would lose users. Google profits from the deal, but at the same time they would want to improve their own market so they don't need to pay anyone else in future.

Re:Google and Mozilla (5, Informative)

theweatherelectric (2007596) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487830)

Google is paying Mozilla around $100 million of commissions per year.

It's now around $300 million a year [allthingsd.com].

Christmas Niggers! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487970)

Ah the wonders of the African Nigger. It's the ultimate "black" box! Welfare money goes in and crime comes out. What happens to turn welfare money into crime (and not gratitude) is the mystery.

For all their whining and crying about "racism" black-on-black crime is MUCH higher than white-on-black crime has ever been. They must breed very quickly to keep up with how fast they shoot each other. This is why so many are fatherless. They would have to breed much more slowly if each nigger father actually took the time to raise his nigger bastard kids. A nigger buck can impregnate another nigger hoe before the first one has given birth. This policy means reduced quality of niggers since they're all bastards but it increases the quantity of niggers to offset the vast numbers of niggers who shoot each other due to nigger gang violence.

What I want to know is: if niggers weren't such criminals (ahahaha no really just humor me) and knew what birth control was (ditto) and didn't ever use welfare then what would our economy look like today? I mean keeping criminals in jail is truly expensive. So is welfare. Oh and let's settle this one, unemployment works on the model of insurance but except for that ANY money you get from the government is welfare it is not just WIC or food stamps. So without niggers I think we'd be much better off.

Ok now go back to feeling sorry for them and telling yourself what a bad person I must be etc etc emotional appeals blah blah pull the wool over your eyes yadda yadda try fucking THINKING just for once and not shutting down just because it's a touchy subject and you react to the word "nigger" like a two-year-old who had his toy taken away.

Re:Christmas Niggers! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488470)

Poor fool. Look around you. I can find at least one white welfare queen for every black one, in America. Not to mention, the prisons have an unhealthy population of white people. And brown people, especially Mexicans. You're worried about dirtballs who happen to be black, and you somehow blind yourself to the millions of dirtballs who happen to be white. Meanwhile, the brown dirtballs don't give a rat's ass about your sensitivities any more than the blacks. Or, me, for that matter. Face it, most racists are just losers who are searching for someone to blame their failings on. And, yes, that goes for black racists, just as much as it applies to you.

sux2BU, huh?

Re:Christmas Niggers! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488520)

Fuck you racist! Merry Christmas!

Re:Christmas Niggers! (0)

kanguro (1237830) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489394)

Black, White, Brown, Yellow People. You USA people have all kinds of colors for people. You are utterly stupid. Is it so difficult to not use colors for people, and talk just about people? I could not believe you still using what you call "ethnicity" and people must tell that. WTF????? You are a shame for the human race.

Re:Google and Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488034)

this kind of cash better be put back into their projects and not lining pockets somewhere....

Re:Google and Mozilla (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488270)

It's now around $300 million a year.

You would think that for $300 million firefox could fix their damn memory leaks.

Re:Google and Mozilla (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489754)

They have, but they didn't enough money to hunt down and kill every retard like you who runs 100 tabs and/or has 20 extensions installed and/or doesn't report on the bug tracker.

No, Google like diversity (3, Insightful)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487832)

Nope. Google understands that diversity is good. If there's just Chrome vs. SomethingElse then the company behind SomethingElse might gain advantage by introducing incompatible features. If there's Chrome vs. Firefox vs. Opera vs. IE vs. .... then there is less probability of this happening. And Google really depends on the open Web.

And Google seems to be more than capable of actually competing with other companies rather than locking users into their products.

And $100 mil.? That's just a small change for Google.

Re:No, Google like diversity (-1, Offtopic)

InterestingFella (2537066) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487850)

Google does need other browsers too, mainly for antitrust issues. They're already being investigated for monopoly abuse in EU and U.S. senators are suggesting that FDC looks into Google's monopoly abuse in U.S. too. EU just recently postponed Google's purchase of Motorola Mobility and may even deny it completely. They have been abusing advertisers on their network by telling that they are not allowed to run same ads on competitors networks. They have a monopoly on internet advertising, and that is the point many are missing. Their antitrust issues aren't about people using Google for searching, but abusing advertisers and other ad networks. After all, Google's customers aren't users - they are merely the product they sell.

Google cannot handle any more antitrust issues than they currently have.

Re:No, Google like diversity (4, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487958)

Uhhhh...that don't make any sense friend as it isn't like MSFT and Apple where if Apple went tits up in the 90s MSFT stood there alone with a big old bullseye. If Mozilla closed shop tomorrow you'd still have Chromium AND Opera AND Safari AND IE AND Dragon AND probably another half a dozen I haven't thought of. Google is about as far from risking antitrust on the browser front as they can get and i'd argue if anything we are swimming in choices more than we have ever had before.

No lets cut through the bullshit and get to the real truth okay? Its not about "advancing the web" or any of that other bullshit its about two things and two things only: Advertising revenue and market share, plain and simple. All of Google's products come down to one thing, selling ads. Even with their numbers declining Mozilla brings them a LOT of eyeballs. if they didn't buy those eyeballs MSFT would have been more than happy to buy those eyeballs so Google shelled out, plain and simple.

Don't you just wish that once, just once, they'd quit with the marketspeak and just tell the truth? I mean how refreshing would it have been for them to say "We make money from ads and searches and Mozilla brings us more revenue, what's to understand?' and left it at that?

Re:No, Google like diversity (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488070)

Actually the really nice thing with google is that they can advance the web and at the same time make tons of money. More power to them. Making money aint bad at all. Since consumers aren't damaged in any way (quite the opposite), i'm all for what they are doing.

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488374)

It is a proprietary feature to be developed, patented and delivered that increases the viability of bing on IE, and consequently makes Windows more relevant (at the expense of everyone else), in other words the bad old days.
The ultimate goal is to keep googles adverts business ubiquitous (not make it so by any means possible).

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488462)

Opera has negligible market share and Safari isn't usable on Windows. I had to duckduckgo for Dragon because I haven't heard of it before. You don't need to have 100% of the market sewn up in order to run afoul of antitrust regulations.

Right now you've got IE, Fx and Chrome combining for something like 90% of the web browsers used at the moment, what the other 10% are doesn't really matter that much, they're not likely to gain much traction and most of them are just reskins of the top 3 browsers.

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

Shadow99_1 (86250) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488600)

What...? Safari 'isn't usable on windows'...? Where do you get that? My machine at work has it so I can test browser issues and that PC is running windows... Oh and it works just fine...

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488976)

He probably just hasn't used it in a while. The first several releases really were unusable. I've got a friend who uses it regularity on Windows. It works find now, and has some snazzy graphics to boot. I'm still a dyed in the wool Firefox users (I'm an add-on [mozilla.org] author for Pete's sake), but for what it's worth Safari is faster than Firefox, not that it matters much on modern hardware.

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489598)

safari is barely usable on mac osx, due to their shitty implementation of plugins. safari is fast whenever it doesn't freeze up for whatever random reason..

but some people say that itunes is usable too so..

Re:No, Google like diversity (4, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489964)

Dude you never tried the Dragon? it fucking rocks man! It by default (you can change it on install or after in options if you wish) will set it up so the browser and ONLY the browser uses the Comodo secure DNS which is not only excellent at blocking malware and driveby sites but if your regular DNS goes down its easy to spot with Comodo using a different DNS. It also supports all the chrome extensions like ABP and ForecastFox, is VERY fast and most importantly (at least for me) there is NO tracking. They remove ALL the google ID and phone home behavior of Chrome. You should try it, they even have an option on install that will make it portable and install to a thumbdrive if you wish. Just a rock solid browser and since switching my customers over i haven't heard a single complaint as they all just love the speed and ease of use!

Now this is OT but this is something that most folks forgets about that needs to be said: Today i invited a guy down the hall to Xmas dinner with my family, I just assumed everyone here would have somewhere to go but when the guy invited me to go with him to try to find a food joint open on Xmas it hit me the guy literally had nobody, nobody at all that gave a damn. I get to talking to him and his whole family is dead and the few that are left are distant kin that probably wouldn't even bother to show up to the man's funeral. So I told him to hop in the truck and I'd take him where we would get some REAL food, brought him out to my mom's and had a real old fashioned Xmas dinner with roast turkey and beef, all the fixings, and pies and pudding for dessert. I swear he ate like 3 helpings and was just thanking us over and over because i found out later his Xmas dinner was gonna be a TV dinner.

So on this holiday when so many of us have so much, family and friends, GFs/wives, more tech junk than we could ever use (I just counted and I'm up to 4 PCs and a netbook, how did THAT happen?) please don't forget to ask around and make sure that those around you aren't spending this Xmas alone because that is just damned depressing. After supper i loaded a couple of dozen movies off my USB drive onto his PC for him to watch and mom loaded him down with leftovers so at least i know they'll be one less person out there that had to have a sucky Xmas simply because nobody gave a damn. So do your little part to make this world a better place, okay?

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

quixote9 (999874) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488720)

I mean how refreshing would it have been for them to say "We make money from ads and searches and Mozilla brings us more revenue, what's to understand?' and left it at that?

Seconded, thirded, fourthed. Bloody Mobius-stripped! If MSFT-Bing wasn't around to snap at GOOG's heels, the world's internet advertising agency would love to make Firefox die. If most traffic went through Chrome, they could finally get serious with tracking. And when the /. crowd cried foul it wouldn't matter. There'd be nowhere else to go.

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

theArtificial (613980) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489366)

If MSFT-Bing wasn't around to snap at GOOG's heels, the world's internet advertising agency would love to make Firefox die.

The don't make money exclusively through Chrome. Regardless of which browser you use they've got advertising services which work across them all (Gmail/Google Search/Docs etc.) DoubleClick and Ad Sense come to mind.

If most traffic went through Chrome, they could finally get serious with tracking.

More serious than having an email account which can be attached to your searches to associate your profile info with? What about Google Analytics and other client side scripts? You are aware that you can mitigate some of these risks with a VPN, disabling JavaScript, or simply not using their services?

There'd be nowhere else to go.

What world do you live in where there are only two browsers?

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38490032)

Thanks and that is why when it came out Intel was (and still is BTW) rigging their compiler and was bribing OEMs I switched to an AMD only shop simply because i know without competition frankly it would seriously suck. I mean if MSFT had rigged Windows to tie a boat anchor to GPL code can you imagine the screams? yet they'll still support a company that has admitted to bribery and rigging the benchmarks (again still are as one reviewer who didn't know about the ICC cripple code remarked when reviewing netbooks "The benches say that the Atom dual is faster than the AMD E series yet the real world doesn't bare this out for some reason" yeah its called "quack.exe" and is as old as putting your thumb on the scale) yet they'll still buy.

On the browser front I use as well as switched my customers over to Comodo Dragon [comodo.com] and frankly everyone couldn't be happier. Its light, its snappy even on this 1.8GHz Sempron that I use as a nettop, its default settings have some really nice security features like using Comodo Secure DNS in the browser ONLY which is fast and stops malware and phishing sites you may stumble across, it even has an option to make it portable and run it off a thumbstick. i heartily recommend it. And of course the more competition we have in the market the better it is for ALL of us because they have to bring their A game or lose.

Re:No, Google like diversity (2)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488650)

Google didn't up the price from $100 million/year to $300 million per year because firefox keeps away the monopoly man. They upped the price to cock-block Microsoft/Bing. If they're losing money to block a competitor, that's a far worse monopoly issue than a poorly managed browser losing market share.

Re:No, Google like diversity (2)

theArtificial (613980) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489410)

Remind me how they have a monopoly on search and browsers again? If you choose to use their services and install their browser because it's a better product it doesn't make Google a monopoly. If I'm following your logic correctly then does McDonalds have a monopoly on hamburgers?

Re:No, Google like diversity (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489704)

You're not following my logic correctly. Or at all. Microsoft was interested in a search deal with Firefox. Google tripled their offer to prevent that from happening. If (if) that's not profitable for Google, then it's anti-competitive to say the least.

Where the hell is this diversity?! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487884)

Wait, what? Where is the diversity between Firefox and Chrome these days? Basically every change since Firefox 4 has been about making Firefox look and behave just like Chrome.

Mozilla has made a lot of stupid moves to achieve this. First, they screwed up Firefox's UI. They dropped the traditional menus, they moved the tab placement, they got rid of the status bar, and they got rid of the protocol from the URL bar. These are all horrible "innovations" that Chrome introduced, and then Mozilla immediately copied.

Then Mozilla went further and tried to imitate Chrome's very frequent release schedule. Any Firefox user knows how bad of an idea this was, given how it prevented extensions from working almost constantly after any update.

In terms of standards, they both target HTML5 these days. HTML5 is the biggest crock of shit we've seen when it comes to web standardization. They introduced a bunch of unnecessary new tags, added in audio and video support without the important step of specifying mandatory codecs, and the funniest part is that this shitty standard isn't expected to be finished until 2022!

There is no diversity any longer. In each and every way, Firefox has become just a half-assed clone of Chrome.

A lot of people are mistaken about Chrome's growing popularity, too. They think that more people are using Chrome because Chrome is doing things right. Well, that's not the reality. What we're actually seeing is all of the other browsers doing it wrong, by trying to copy Chrome, but they're all inferior in one way or another.

Why would anyone want to use Firefox these days (or IE, or Opera, or Safari, all of which are making the same stupid let's-clone-Chrome moves) when it looks just like Chrome, behaves just like Chrome, except it's a lot slower and uses a lot more memory? You might as well just use the real Google Chrome, and have the least-shitty of all of the shitty experiences, even if the UI isn't what you want, it doesn't behave like you want, and the performance and memory usage still aren't very good.

Re:Where the hell is this diversity?! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488026)

Mozilla has made a lot of stupid moves to achieve this. First, they screwed up Firefox's UI. They dropped the traditional menus, they moved the tab placement, they got rid of the status bar, and they got rid of the protocol from the URL bar. These are all horrible "innovations" that Chrome introduced, and then Mozilla immediately copied.

Firefox 3.x still works fine for me. Mozilla are still putting out updates (just got one the other day).

Oblig. car analogy: Up until about 1970(??), General Motors was organized as several competing companies -- Pontiac was very happy to steal market share from Chevrolet, Buick from Oldsmobile, and each division built their own stuff. While the Google-Mozilla relationship is slightly more "arms-length" financially than the old GM model, it's the same strategy -- products & total market share improve when there is competition, even if the competitors are under effectively the same corporate umbrella.

It started to fall apart when GM managers realized they could close the Pontiac engine division and save money in the short term by shipping Pontiacs with Chevy engines...(etc., parts come from the corporate parts bin). At first Pontiac buyers complained (there were lawsuits!), but the fine print was quickly reworded, "GM cars come with quality components made by GM divisions or suppliers".

Its the money, stupid! (4, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487982)

Nope. Google understands that diversity is good.

You got modded insightful but slashdot just had a story about that very thing, What do we do when the internet mob is wrong? [slashdot.org]

Extraordinary claims requires extraordinary evidence. Until such time, there is no reason to believe that its about anything other than the money.

If there's Chrome vs. Firefox vs. Opera vs. IE vs. ....

Well you just blew it right there. Google always defaults new services to browser sniffing and disallowing Opera, even though when Opera pretends to be Firefox that things just work. Could that be because of a small market share, and thus no money inventive, so try hard to get Opera users on Chrome? Yeah.

Re:Its the money, stupid! (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488476)

That's not extraordinary, they realize that if they kill funding to Mozilla that they'll almost certainly be slapped with an antitrust lawsuit and could very easily wind up being broken up. It would take some incredible hutzpah for them to even try and risk that, there's just way too little to be gained for the risk.

Re:Its the money, stupid! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489618)

Or, maybe it's:

"I'm going to develop this and not test against Opera, so disallow it."

You'd be surprised how much that happens :)

Re:Its the money, stupid! (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 2 years ago | (#38490096)

"I'm going to develop this and not test against Opera, so disallow it."

So exactly the opposite of the diversity claim...

That and they don't want to be a monopoly (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488094)

Don't get me wrong, they want to be the search engine everyone uses, but they don't want the government to declare them a monopoly and come after them. If they had the One True Browser(tm) then that would be far more likely.

Besides, they make all their money on their search engine, or more properly on the ads it can serve up. Everything else is just a way of protecting and growing it. Hence it makes a lot of sense to play nice with FF, and others. They don't care what you use, so long as it talks to Google for its search.

Google would love to have a market where there are lots of competing search engines, they just all suck so everyone uses Google. That way they don't have monopoly issues but get to have all the business.

Re:No, Google like diversity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488134)

Google understands that PR is good, so idiot fan boys will repeat their marketing unquestioned all over the Internet.

Re:No, Google like diversity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488208)

Nope. Google understands that diversity is good. If there's just Chrome vs. SomethingElse then the company behind SomethingElse might gain advantage by introducing incompatible features. If there's Chrome vs. Firefox vs. Opera vs. IE vs. .... then there is less probability of this happening. And Google really depends on the open Web.

And Google seems to be more than capable of actually competing with other companies rather than locking users into their products.

And $100 mil.? That's just a small change for Google.

But what really makes me think there is something fishy is the way Google is excluding other browsers from some of their products.. some of which are pretty pointless: special levels of Angry Birds that only work in Chrome? Seems like a miniature MSN games working only on IE7 above but this time under the tag of the "open" web

Re:No, Google like diversity (3, Interesting)

bonch (38532) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489426)

And Google seems to be more than capable of actually competing with other companies rather than locking users into their products.

You are the product; advertisers are the users. In the realm of web advertising, Google has a huge monopoly and is being investigated for antitrust abuse.

Re:Google and Mozilla (3, Interesting)

devitto (230479) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487882)

Gaaaah! Yes, but your counter-critism is even more flawed.
Do you think that $100/$300m is a goodwill gift? No!
The key points are:
a) Mozilla are not a search company.
b) Google make the vast proportion of their profit from search.
c) This contract brings in very significant additional revenue to Google.
d) It keeps that very significant market share away from it's competitor(s).

So no matter how much people think Google want a browser war, they'd over the moon if Firefox gained 100% market share - because their search revenue is what this is all about.

The bottom line is that apart from the engineering advancements in browser technology (which is a key enabling factor to grow revenue in the other Google products) as long as firefox+chrome has a greater market share than chrome or firefox alone, Google really don't care if the userbase split is 50:50 or 1:100.

Remember MS didn't, and don't make IE because it's a nice idea - they quickly realised that the OS and the Apps (99% of there revenue at the time) were not important in a Web 1.0 world, and so they needed to control that space urgently and entirely, which at one point was very successful. They then moved into locking business into web-enabled technologies (e.g. Sharepoint) to hinder large migrations to Apple (or HP/Dell on linux) plus web solutions.
IMO, MS is basically held up by it's marketing and stong sales channels at the moment - if these sales channels all started shipping with Linux (+Office etc.) it could all come down like a big house of cards. That's a big 'if' - but that's also a very big fall.

Re:Google and Mozilla (5, Insightful)

Dr. Spork (142693) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487944)

...if Google could avoid paying $100 million a year, they would do so. It's better to put that money into their own product...

Not really. They're paying that money in order to be able to fight MSIE/Bing with two sharp weapons instead of one. If they cut off Firefox's oxygen and pumped the $100 million into Chrome, the pressure on MSIE would shrink and not grow. So this absolutely is a wise investment.

Re:Google and Mozilla (3, Interesting)

datavirtue (1104259) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489188)

Indeed, Chrome has put a lot of pressure on Microsoft. Then again, everything Google does puts pressure on Microsoft. Ironically, Microsoft could have ignored all of this and focused on their core business (OS, Enterprise services, and server platforms). Hell, they could have even stopped producing a browser, shed the distraction, and continued on unabated. Now they are mired in a fight against many others in the industry, all of whom are leaders in their respective service or tech while Microsoft is an also-ran. You would think the stock holders would have some words.

Re:Google and Mozilla (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488042)

"Note that Peter is an engineer,...."

Exactly. I'd like to hear the explanation from someone who holds the gate for such funds. In other words, the guy/ girl who has the fancy business MBA degree and see things in a quarterly-basis/ 5-year projection.

Re:Google and Mozilla (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488332)

Google's market is advertisers. Google's conpetitors are other advertisers. Google's competitors are other eeb advertisers.
Chrome and firefox are a means to an end. Google is thinking out a little bit more than most money people, wanting to (poor analogy alert) raise the tide, knowing full well it floats a lot of other boats besides its own, rather than justvtrying to hog up all of the harbor docking slips for itself.
It still sees itself in a sea of plenty, rather than trying to be the only one left on the life raft.

Re:Google and Mozilla (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488734)

Chrome is NOT Google's market; the web, and Google services+ads, are Google's market.
They don't mind whatever you use to get there, as long as it's a pleasurable experience on which to build and sell you products.

Re:Google and Mozilla (3, Insightful)

c (8461) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488740)

> Google profits from the deal, but at the same time they would want to improve their
> own market so they don't need to pay anyone else in future.

$100 million (or $300m, or whatever it is these days) is money well spent to keep Microsoft fighting a two front war in the browser market. Because if they ever get another stranglehold on the browser, Google and pretty much anyone else who depends on a free and open web is seriously fucked.

Re:Google and Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488744)

The first thing I do when I install Firefox on a new computer is switch the default search engine to DuckDuckGo. Google can take their money and shove it up their ass.

--
There is a new arrogant asshole [mailto] in town!

Re:Google and Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488886)

So it's very easy to see why Google would be willing to fund Mozilla

I see we have to normal collection of slapshot tossers with their attempts at something that fails totally . Thinks it may well be time to look at starting a a proper competitor with sanity as the main rule

Re:Google and Mozilla (4, Insightful)

arkhan_jg (618674) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488928)

but if Google could avoid paying $100 million a year, they would do so. It's better to put that money into their own product, and they really want to do that

Why? If you assume that most of that money goes into paying for engineers and developers and distribution costs, why is it axiomatic that they must also be employed by google? If the work is good, and gets additional users to use a quickly developing browser instead of say, IE6, then mission accomplished. Firefox takes different decisions and has different emphasis than google, so if your stated goal is a well developed advancing client base, it makes sense to fund a 'competitor' in that the two different projects with different histories will meet the needs of more people than a single browser team can. Firefox has built up a lot of trust by ordinary users the last few years, a number of whom don't trust google enough to install their browser. It wasn't safari or opera that broke the back of the IE dominance, it was mozilla by offering a markedly more functional browser - and that has forced microsoft to resume work on their browser and compete again.

And after all, google tries to make advanced, compelling web apps in order to plonk adverts in as front as many eyes as possible. As any web developer who's had to build their site, and then break bits of it for IE6 in the last decade can appreciate, advanced browsers make it a hell of a lot easier to do that regardless of the name in the titlebar. And this is what microsoft feared and tried to stop for years - web-based, standards compliant advanced apps that run on any platform. When the browser is the platform, who cares what OS it runs on; and thus who needs to keep paying such extortionate prices for windows, and by extension, office? Obviously we're not there yet, and there will always be heavy duty stuff that can't be OS agnostic, but for most people, most of the time, it's becoming far less important what OS you have as long as it runs say, webmail, facebook and whatever sites you personally hang out on. We've cloud books, cloud music, cloud films, cloud email, cloud document apps, cloud productivity apps of whatever stripe, online banking, social networking, cloud photos, the list just keeps on growing. Just look at the roaring growth of smartphones, netbooks and tablets - most of what they're used for is a browser, apps that's basically some form-factor specific UI that gets or dumps everything onto some html5 website, or games.

Competition is good, and it means that people who aren't google can come up with ideas that we can all then benefit from, including google themselves. It's good that google themselves realise that.

whatever google, stfu (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487834)

yeah, they are really advancing the web by repackaging webkit and they were leaders in the industry when they were pushing gecko. thank god google is pushing web standards with all their browser "innovations" so everyone else can follow the path they are leading.

google is a stupid company that says whatever they think stupid people will believe, including the don't be evil bullshit. i'm sure all the analytics they collect from chrome aren't being used to better monazite advertising and I'm sure the renewed deal with firefox has nothing to do with the same goal -- having searches flow through their search engines.

there is nothing altruistic in any of this, and if you believe Kasting, your lobotomy procedure was a success. congratulations!

diaf google.

Re:whatever google, stfu (4, Insightful)

Elbereth (58257) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488472)

People seem to think that Google is some kind of non-profit charity, powered by rainbows and idealism, with a unicorn as their CEO (and a pony as VP). You can't buy that kind of brand loyalty and PR. It's thoroughly amazing, and, yet, also disturbing, because along with it comes a reluctance to pay any attention to criticism. It doesn't help that Google's detractors, for a long time, were spammers, SEO professionals, shills, and other assorted scum.

I liked Google a lot back when it first became popular. It was clearly the best search engine. They eventually started diversifying into all sorts of things, while always collecting more and more information on their users. Fine. That's how they make their money. I don't begrudge them their demographics information, but if you listen to the average person, Google is doing all this out of the kindness of their hearts, to better make a utopian society, and the whole advertising / data collection business is a distasteful, necessary evil that Google engages in, because they need to fund their good works. And that's if they even recognize that there's a trade going on here. A lot of people, if they see no price attached to something, think that it's completely free, with no associated loss of privacy as a price. Nothing is ever free, in that absolute sense. Even if there's no price, it's still got an opportunity cost.

Microsoft or IBM would literally kill to have this kind of PR. Yes, literally. I think they would outright murder a homeless man tomorrow, if they thought it would buy them this kind of sentiment from the public. Apple is about halfway there, but I think that it's more likely that Apple is a nascent religious cult, as opposed to the true believers lining up to join Google's utopian society.

It seems like it's getting increasingly difficult to find software projects that don't have some ideological drive behind them. You can't just use a program. You're buying into a worldview. Oh well. I guess it could be worse. At least we're not stuck with IE 4 and Netscape Communicator.

Re:whatever google, stfu (3, Interesting)

HarrySquatter (1698416) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488618)

The sad thing is that most Google fanbois try to claim that Apple is a cult and yet their devotion is at times even more devout when it comes to the holy word of Google.

Re:whatever google, stfu (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488816)

It doesn't help that Google's detractors, for a long time, were spammers, SEO professionals, shills, and other assorted scum.

This hasn't changed at all. The mad scrambling of you pathetic pieces of human detritus to attempt to besmirch Google makes me like and support them even more. You people disgust me.

Re:whatever google, stfu (3, Interesting)

datavirtue (1104259) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489208)

Admitted Google fan boy. Google is still clearly the best search engine. If anyone is concerned with privacy they can find ways to use Google without divulging "personal" information. Facebook has many times more accurate personal information than Google could ever dream of gathering.

Oh no! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487836)

Google + Mozilla = Gozilla

Re:Oh no! (1)

rvw (755107) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487972)

Google + Mozilla = Gozilla

Wrong! As you could know, it is Godzilla, which is final proof that Google is God.

Re:Oh no! (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488080)

I didn't know God was a monopolistic ad-broker.

Re:Oh no! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488256)

I didn't know God was a monopolistic ad-broker.

He always was: "for you shall not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God" (Exodus 34:14)

Slashdot, Oh Please! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487838)

Fellow Slashdotters, something has been troubling me recently. Actually, I discovered it a few seconds ago.

It's awful. I don't think I'll ever be the same. At this point, I'm just a mere shell of what I once was. I'm afraid to even discuss it with you, but I'll try to anyway.

I just discovered that my sack of nuts, my nutsack, my precious sack... is actually a big ol' papoohiesack in disguise! That make my cheeks boil as such never before!

What do I do?

Chrome is example of corporate Opportunism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487864)

Peter should explain it to Google shareholders in other words.

Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbit (4, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487866)

It's completely irrelevant to this goal whether Chrome actually gains tons of users or whether instead the web advances because the other browser vendors step up their game and produce far better browsers

I am sure this is what he has in mind:

It's important for Chrome to actually gain tons of users because that potentially creates more search traffic for us, complementing our efforts with Android on the mobile front.

In fact, Chrome's current momentum, which has enabled it to grab more than the initial goal of 10% worldwide usage does not hurt at all.

Someone should tell this engineer that we know what he's thinking.

Re:Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbi (1)

iserlohn (49556) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487964)

The only problem with your theory is that those that are jumping ship to chrome is likely already using Google search.

The real reason that Google pushes chrome is to ensure that they can drive the direction of web standards. In other words, chrome gives them a large say in how the web moves forward.

What people tend to forget is that Google isn't a software company. They are a company that indexes and provides access to information, which currently is funded by ad-sales, but is not limited to this business model. Everything that Google does is towards this goal.

Re:Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbi (1)

sessamoid (165542) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488040)

Not limited to ad-sales as a business model? What percentage of revenues is Google currently making and projected to make on non-ad revenues?

Re:Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbi (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488480)

Reread the parent: "which currently is funded by ad-sales". He's not saying they make much money from non-ad things, he's saying they could go in that direction in future if they think it would be beneficial.

Re:Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbi (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487984)

Take off your tinfoil hat.

Re:Peter Kasting [conviniently] excluded one tidbi (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488348)

I would be careful trying to put words in Peter's mouth. He's likely to show up here.

:Peter Kasting needs to take the red pill (1)

Mr 44 (180750) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489404)

The overwhelming thought that comes to my mind is that this poor engineer has actual bought the company line. All that kool-aid drinking thats so common at giant tech companies actually works on some people. He's a naive young engineer, who truly believes what he is saying. And that means that Management has done their job.

Listen up, kiddo... You think you know [b]why[/b] Google is building Chrome? LOL. What you think the "corporate strategy" is, is actually just the part they tell you to motivate you. Someday, hopefully, you will peek behind the curtain and see whats actually going on (hint- it ain't pretty)

cookie (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487870)

someone get this guy a cookie

Bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38487888)

Chrome is a neat hook to snare the influential tech crowd. If Google really believed in maximising the web experience then it would pay more attention to the Opera browser.

All of this is before we get into Google's search monopoly and how its index skews the focus of traffic so other competing search engines have less traction with the web population as a whole.

There are more important fundamental questions about competition and internet search technologies that Google's headline technology drive and public relations are obscuring.

Re:Bullshit (1)

datavirtue (1104259) | more than 2 years ago | (#38489778)

"how its index skews the focus of traffic so other competing search engines have less traction with the web population as a whole."

Huh? Please elaborate.

First they laugh at you (1, Interesting)

houghi (78078) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487926)

First they laugh at you
Then they fight you
Then they bribe you
Then they win

Wait. What?

Basically what he is saying is that as long as Firefox does what they want (Advance the web, whatever that means) they will keep funding. Once Firefox stops doing that, the money will be gone. That means Google has as least some sort of influence of what is going on. Sure it is their right, but with their own browser, they will be extremely tempted to direct things. e.g. never make any google blocking default part of Firefox.

How would I now know if decisions are made because of what users want or of what google wants?

And not caring about the share of Chrome? Then why do they try to push it so hard that it feels like rape?

Google is a marketing company and they are using marketing wording to sell us a story.

Re:First they laugh at you (2)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488312)

How would I now know if decisions are made because of what users want or of what google wants?

Why should it be the way users want? If Red Hat pays people to work on the kernel, they work on what Red Hat want not what "users" in general want. If Google pays Firefox's bills, why wouldn't they be doing what Google wants? Apart from the extremely small minority that's contributed to Firefox, most of their users are simply product like TV viewers. The money made = number of people watching * number of ads, it never makes sense to made of those zero because then the total is obviously also zero. In other words, Only instead of being a means to serve ads, they're a means to serve search requests that serve ads. The only different is that being OSS, you can fork and go your own pay. Or pay them to go your way. But they don't become your pets to commandeer around just because you use the product, OSS or not.

The browser isn't the game. (3, Insightful)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#38487942)

I find it hard to believe anyone really thinks letting Mozilla die would be a benefit to Google. It doesn't take a doctorate in Sociology to know people like choice. If they are limited in choices the more likely the choices become "the greater between" style evil. eg Nutscrape v. Internut Exploder. There were fans on both sides. There were haters of the other side. And more importantly, there were haters of both because there were little alternatives (at the time). What Google wants is not to get any of that hate. Keeping them a player and a partner improves the real game, traffic to Google. How people get there is unimportant.

SImple math (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488060)

In
IE(Bing) vs Google
during stiff competition, that will eventually lead to 50/50 assuming they both do extremely well in comparison to each other.

In
IE vs Google vs Firefox (Google interest aligned)
during stiff competition, that eventually leads to 33/33/33 where 2/3 are still within browsers that aligned with Google's Interest.

Not hard to see why they would want the latter rather then the former. Even at the increase of 300m, it's still a relatively small price for Google for this long term benefit.

ORLY? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488074)

A web without advertising is the best advancement I can imagine. Get working on that Google!

Google and Mozilla: Partners, Not Competitors (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488096)

Someone ought to tell Mozilla this. Judging by their bizarre version numbering system and flawed gui tweaks, they appear to be trying (and completely failing) to compete with Chrome.

Google has nothing to fear from Mozilla. They innovated themselves into global success, and are now irritating their way to total failure.

They seem doomed forever to repeat the exact same failures as Netscape.

Google funds ad vector for $300 million / year (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488106)

Google engineer demonstrates why he's in engineering rather than marketing or sales. Details at 11.

Google is spending $300 million / year to:

- Make sure that users of the popular Firefox browser continue to see Google's search engine, and thus Google's ads by default.

- Make sure that Firefox users continue to NOT see Microsoft's ads by default.

End of story. There's no magnanimity here, no making the world a better place. Just business. For that, $300 million / year sounds like a bargain.

Think about it. How much do you think Google pays Apple to make sure that Google is the default search engine for Mobile Safari? Think that Apple does that for free? Same exact deal with Firefox. But throw in a quaintly deluded engineer's explanation of things.

ummm...ad revenue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488206)

Search is the starting point of the web. But....opening the browser comes first. If you made most of your money on search, wouldn't you want the only browser of note made by someone not investing in search to be aligned with you? I'd say this is a hedge against lost future ad revenue plain and simple.

Then why not support Opera in their services? (1)

HauntedGhost (2075374) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488216)

I still would like to ask Google why they dont support Opera in their services if they are so concerned for the betterment of the web. Opera has been a prime contributor in the web and browser technologies. I dont doubt Google's motives, but there is this fact, too. I will hate it if a small market share is the only reason behind that.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488238)

the fact is that almost nobody uses opera. small market share DOES make a difference, take out firefox and i am sure that google would be endorsing opera...but firefox is so ahead of opera in terms of people that use it that it basically makes opera invalid.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488298)

Opera has more than 60% mobile browser market along with its 3% desktop market. You are a moron. This is, of course, ignoring that Opera invented or used nearly every current browser technology long before these other browsers existed.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (3, Informative)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488336)

And tried to charge money for them, when others were starting to offer them for free. Every time a thread about browsers is posted here, some member of the Opera team comes on here to tell us how Opera had everything first. Well, I'll give you that. Opera introduced me to tabbed browsing, and I loved it. Then they put ads in the fucking browser unless you paid for it, and I found a different browser.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (2)

HauntedGhost (2075374) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488552)

Yes. It charged money in the era where free browsers weren't quite around (till 2000), and Opera had to make money from somewhere. After that, it became free and started supporting ads; again, because they had to get some revenue - the current revenue system of making money through search engine (i.e., Google) wasn't there yet. The ads got removed after that. Internet Explorer was free then, obviously because of the backing of Microsoft. Firefox came into play around 2004 - same time around where Opera also became free. Opera had had its share of mistakes. But your argument is too old to be relevant. This said, I totally admit that Firefox and Chrome are totally brilliant browsers- so are the companies behind them.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489318)

Yes. It charged money in the era where free browsers weren't quite around (till 2000)

I have never paid for a browser they were free downloads of them as far back as 1994-1995 when I first was on the web.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (1)

HauntedGhost (2075374) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488334)

Opera came to my mind because Google was worrying about the betterment of the web. As i wrote in my previous comment, a smaller market share should not be hindering this. As far as your skepticism about Opera is concerned, Opera have kept innovating web and browsers. They havent contributed anything but good to the web. On the other hand, Google recently has been launching features in their services that are Chrome-Only. I really doubt if that is good for the web.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (3, Informative)

gsnedders (928327) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488508)

See Opera's financial reports [opera.com]:

Opera's monetization strategy for its desktop browser revolves predominantly around search. Google is Opera's global search partner and provides the vast majority of desktop monetization.

...and...

Today, revenue generated from Opera's mobile consumers emanates primarily from mobile search, the Opera Mobile Store and content partnerships.

Google is Opera's default search partner for Opera Mini and Opera Mobile world-wide.

Both go on to mention other, smaller, search affiliation deals.

Re:Then why not support Opera in their services? (1)

HauntedGhost (2075374) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488566)

Yes. Google is the reason why Opera even exists. Thats totally known to me. They why not support it for its services too?

they are nothing alike (4, Interesting)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488380)

Like Google, Mozilla is clearly committed to the betterment of the web

mozilla is a foundation to promote software.

google is a COMPANY whose goal i to PROMOTE ITSELF.

stop playing the fool, people. google is not out to help you. they are out to make a profit.

the biggest con is that google created a marketing jingle (sans tune) that goes 'do no evil'. its a lie and most of us knew this from the very start. a company (in america, especially) HAS to be profitable and has to be absent of ethics (well, its not a must-have but it surely helps).

google wants lock-in and they want to serve ads. they are NOT doing things 'to better the internet'. almost everywhere I go (on major websites) when I visit some i/o happens and goes to google. when I order electronic parts, some googleapis site gets triggered! I can't escape google even if I tried, and I have most of their domains blocked.

google is quite quite evil. every one of their plans should be carefully inspected and the real motivations exposed.

yeah yeah, the kids working there get free lunches and shirts. they are bribed to look the other way and they're in their own little bubble, insulated from much of the rest of the world.

google, like the devil, has a great accomplishment: convincing the world that they are not evil. ooooh, shiny websites! they CLEARLY have our interests at heart.

pathetic how we eat up this drivel.

google is the new microsoft. make no mistake who your friends are. google would sell you out as fast as facebook would. neither are your 'friends'.

Re:they are nothing alike (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489182)

> google is not out to help you. they are out to make a profit

the two motives are not mutually exclusive

>google wants lock-in

how exactly are they locking anyone in? they provide functionality to export your information out of their system. for everything they offer, there's no shortage of alternatives. i just don't see the 'lock in' that you're blathering about.

>CLEARLY have our interests at heart.

well, you could argue that NO company has your interests at heart. If so, how do you function in this country believing that?

mo3 uP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488386)

Continues to l0se become an unwanted

Partners? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488400)

A good start then would be to update Google toolbar for the flurry of Firefox releases.
Firefox has one thing that other browsers lack, the ability to easily customize the toolbars and icon buttons. I can "make" Firefox look the way I like it. Chrome has a very clean interface but needs the ability to add new tools or functional buttons to the toolbar.

Mozilla better use it's money (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38488418)

Instead of becoming part of the 1% and wasting it on champagne baths and golden car fleets.

That means an official status bar extension instead of "Status4Evar", Official MSI and GPO support and don't drop Leopard support while you still support Windows 2000.

Firefox has become a big disappointment in 2011, you better use the money you're getting wisely or give it to another browser project like Opera, Midori or Konqueror.

Haha! (2)

Lazy Jones (8403) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488522)

the primary goal of Chrome is to make the web advance as much and as quickly as possible. That's it.

I believe this as much as that Google uses dodgy tax evasion tricks [bloomberg.com] to make the world a better place, or perhaps help the economy...

Why is it so hard to believe? (3, Insightful)

dell623 (2021586) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488524)

An AC comment in the previous story said very much the same thing: http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2583644&cid=38441032 [slashdot.org]

Is it really that hard to believe that someone has to come up with far fetched ridiculous reasons like anti trust (anti trust with browsers makes no sense, chrome is never going to become a monopoly on the desktop and with growth in mobile it doesn't matter anyway)?

There is nothing underhanded and Google doesn't need to do anything underhanded. Sure there's some marketing speak in Kasting's post. But the bottomline is this does suit google's own business plan, the web's their space, they're not interested in competing with Mac OS and Windows directly. And they can't rely on IE and Safari being the interface to the web, they want to push them in the direction where Google wants to go and where their strength lies. Mozilla does it just fine because open works in Google's favour.

Ads the word? (1)

Shienarier (185368) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488558)

I thought that the reason for Chrome (and Android) was to make us all keep using Google products, in order to see Google ads.

Another very simple reason (3, Insightful)

onyxruby (118189) | more than 2 years ago | (#38488662)

There's also another very simple reason.

Eyeballs.

It's the same reason that Microsoft has advertised on Slashdot. By making the deal with Mozilla they get to be the default search engine on one of the most popular browsers. That is a lot of eyeballs. Frankly, I wouldn't be surprised if the next contract replaced Google with Microsoft. Ad agencies go where the eyeballs are, does this really surprise anyone?

/conspiracy theorists need better hobbies.

google is good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489216)

an altruistic company, whoda thought?

Google and Mozilla: Partners, Not Competitors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38489594)

Google and Mozilla
  Partners, Not Competitors
Competitors not Partners
And always twirling, twirling towards freedom

Explains lack of basic features & over-enginee (2)

gottabeme (590848) | more than 2 years ago | (#38490050)

Well, since they don't care about users--or usefulness--but only about "technology," perhaps that explains the lack of basic features, like the inability to resume downloads [google.com]. Perhaps it also explains some of the "over-engineering [google.com]" going into such basic features. *sigh*

There's a problem with that last quote... (1)

Millennium (2451) | more than 2 years ago | (#38490052)

Firefox is an important product because it can be a different product with different design decisions and serve different users well.

This is true as far as it goes, but it's moot as long as Firefox continues along its current mad quest to not be a different product with different design decisions.

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