Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Apple Picking a Fight it Can't Win With Safari

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the those-who-can-and-will-upgrade-already-have dept.

The Internet 589

Ian Lamont writes "Mike Elgan has an analysis of Apple's successes and concludes that the release of the Safari browser for Windows not only goes against the Apple success formula, but is doomed to a vicious failure: 'The insular Apple universe is a relatively gentle place, an Athenian utopia where Apple's occasional missteps are forgiven, all partake of the many blessings of citizenship, and everyone feels like they're part of an Apple-created golden age of lofty ideas and superior design. But the Windows world isn't like that. It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken. Especially the Windows browser market. ... While security nerds were ripping Apple for a buggy beta, the UI enthusiasts started going after Apple for the look and feel. Here's a small sample. Apple can expect much more of this in the future. The problem? Safari for Windows just isn't Windows enough.' Elgan also expects that the Firefox faithful will fight the Safari influx — a theory that has been supported by comments from Mozilla executive John Lilly, who criticized Steve Jobs' 'blurry view of real world' just after Jobs announced Safari for Windows."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Oh look! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19540899)

Bloggers think they matter again!

They're Not There to Win (5, Insightful)

pyite (140350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540923)

It's not about winning. Giving how Apple has decided to let apps be developed for the iPhone, Safari on Windows effectively serves as a development environment for non-OS X developers who want to deploy iPhone apps. And in the end, even 5% total marketshare for Safari is good because it pushes web standards just a little bit more.

Re:They're Not There to Win (2, Interesting)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541013)

Amen.

The number of places I felt some respect for their ability have really bummed me out recently. Leo Laporte's rant on the latest Macbreak Weekly about how it's some new lock in for non-open standards was very disappointing. This article is just a Dvorak style 'bash apple and draw attention to me from the fanboy's' type article, not worth the bandwidth.

It's always amazing when Apple announces something new with little/no detail behind the motivation and everyone assumes their either going to Die, or try and take over the world.

Maybe they just wanted 95% of the computers out there to be able to develop an application for their new phone?

Re:They're Not There to Win (2, Informative)

pyite (140350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541089)

Leo Laporte's rant on the latest Macbreak Weekly about how it's some new lock in for non-open standards was very disappointing.

That really bothered me. And he and Andy Ihnatko [cwob.com] kept going on and on about until Merlin Mann [43folders.com] was basically like "Um, do we have any reason to believe its proprietary?" (links added in case people don't know who they are). Leo's usually not like that, and it surprised me, a lot. I wonder what pushed him in that direction.

Re:They're Not There to Win (5, Informative)

Simon Donkers (950228) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541117)

Maybe when Steve Jobs showed a pie chart of the browsermarket and his vision in his presentation it was an indication of Apple's motivation.

John Lilly, Mozilla's chief operating officer, focused on the part of the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) keynote where Jobs spelled out existing browser shares of Microsoft Corp.'s Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari -- 78%, 15% and 2%, respectively -- before displaying another pie chart that showed Safari with about a quarter of the market, IE with the remainder.
From Computer World [computerworld.com] .

So Steve wants to claim 25% marketshare in the browsermarket and kill Firefox, Opera and the rest in the process. When they release a version that will work for me I'll be happy as that means I can test websites for compatibility without having to buy a Mac. However if they are trying to gain a 25% marketshare they have a very long way to go and I very much doubt they can squash Firefox out of the picture so easily.

Re:They're Not There to Win (3, Insightful)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541271)

I think it would have been a more interesting slide if he swapped Safari and IE's positions in the first chart to make the second chart, therefore putting Safari at 74%, Firefox at 20%, IE at 12%, and other at 2% or something like that. Now that would have been looking ahead! However, I'd rather we don't have any web browser taking that sort of market share ever again in order to promote open standards with an open process (which means the W3C has to open themselves up a bit to the public when developing new web standards).

Re:They're Not There to Win (4, Interesting)

adam1101 (805240) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541099)

I don't know why this meme of "Safari, the iPhone SDK" has suddenly become so popular, but Jobs himself has said in his keynote that they really want Safari to get a much bigger market share. Interestingly, on his slides his projected market share gain came mainly at the expense of Firefox and others, rather than IE.

Re:They're Not There to Win (5, Insightful)

pyite (140350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541183)

I don't know why this meme of "Safari, the iPhone SDK" has suddenly become so popular, but Jobs himself has said in his keynote that they really want Safari to get a much bigger market share.

I think you can throw that under the heading of Reality Distortion Field [wikipedia.org] . I think it's a ploy to take attention away from the sucky fact that the only "apps" they're allowing on the iPhone are web pages. Oooh, innovative.

Re:They're Not There to Win (4, Insightful)

Admiral Ag (829695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541217)

I don't understand the problem.

A lot of Windows users downloaded iTunes, even though they didn't have an iPod. A lot of people just like it (and of course many people hate it). The same will probably be true of Safari.

There are of course many things to fix, but it is a beta. I'm guessing there will be a few people who want a simple, easy to use browser without endless sets of extensions and widgets. I was that person years ago when a simple browser called "Phoenix" was released, and that's why I used it. Now Firefox is not the simple browser it used to be.

Of course /. posters and other tech people who love complicated software with millions of customization options aren't going to like it. But for many people less is more.

FTR I now use Omniweb, which was well worth the small registration fee.

Re:They're Not There to Win (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541301)

Safari has boatloads of options in a text file somewhere (something like Safari.plist) just like Firefox does (prefs.js). Yay power users!

Re:They're Not There to Win (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541419)

Rather than poking around in a plist, you can access them via the defaults system on OS X with:
defaults read com.apple.safari

Re:They're Not There to Win (1, Troll)

Frankie70 (803801) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541153)


It's not about winning. Giving how Apple has decided to let apps be developed for the iPhone, Safari on Windows effectively serves as a development environment for non-OS X developers who want to deploy iPhone apps.



A 100 posts over here say the same thing - i.e. Apple released Safari on Windows to help devs
who are developing for the iPhone.
But why then did Steve Jobs make his comment about how in the future the market will be
75% IE & 25% Safari.

I think this is posturing by the fanbois. If Safari on Win is a flop, it would be good
to pretend that Apple was never competing. Apple can't possibly compete & lose, can they?

Re:They're Not There to Win (5, Insightful)

Admiral Ag (829695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541413)

I think I understand Jobs' reasoning. It's all about Web 2.0 and compatibility between desktop and mobile browsing.

Let's say the iPhone is a huge hit in the way that the iPod is a huge hit. Let's say it revolutionizes mobile web browsing (I think people spend too much time looking at the interface, the phone apps and the iPod app - the "real" internet "in your pocket" is the big deal). The iPod being a hit meant that iTunes became a standard on desktop PCs.

So if the iPhone is a success, people will spend a lot of time browsing sites on it, and people will write Web 2.0 sites for it. Simply put, if the iPhone is a mega hit, Safari becomes the standard for mobile internet browsing, and IE mobile is finished (I have it. It sucks anyway). I think this will happen. Safari marketshare is going to shoot up as more people use their iPhones to access the web (this is why I think that devs whining about the lack of an iPhone SDK is dumb. Web 2.0 is the way to go).

But no-one is going to spend all their time browsing on their phone. People will want to use the same 2.0 sites on their desktop machines. Do you really think that Apple can trust Microsoft or the Firefox devs to make sure that IE and Firefox will be compatible with all the sites that are aimed at iPhone users?

Wouldn't it suck if you were using a great Web 2.0 interactive site on your iPhone and you got to your desk and discovered it didn't work properly with your desktop browser?

Wouldn't it suck if it was hard to sync your bookmarks between your phone and your desktop browsers?

By allowing Safari for Windows, Apple is basically saying: "All you other guys better support Safari, because it will rule mobile browsing. If you think that you can create trouble for the iPhone by making it hard for sites to be compatible with both the iPhone and Windows desktop browsing, then we're going to stop that by telling everyone that if their favourite sites work on their phone, but not their desktop, that they can download a browser that will make it work on the desktop. And added to that, we are going to make it super easy to sync bookmarks between Safari on the desktop and Safari on the phone. People will want a seamless experience between their mobile browsing and their browsing on traditional computers. Ignore this at your peril."

If Apple comes to rule mobile browsing, then it will be in a powerful position to determine web standards. Safari is insurance against others who might rock the boat.

Re:They're Not There to Win (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541187)

> Safari on Windows effectively serves as a development environment for non-OS X developers who want to deploy iPhone apps. And in
> the end, even 5% total marketshare for Safari is good because it pushes web standards just a little bit more.

You really think web developers are going to give a shit if their sites work on IE 5&6, Netscape, and Firefox but break/look odd on Safari?

Re:They're Not There to Win (3, Interesting)

pyite (140350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541219)

You really think web developers are going to give a shit if their sites work on IE 5&6, Netscape, and Firefox but break/look odd on Safari?

I think they're starting to. Part of the thing is that it seems like a lot of the people who write a lot of crap and have decent readership of their blogs also happen to be Mac users. So, they get to a site that doesn't work, they blog about it, it doesn't look good, etc. etc. There's really no excuse to not make your stuff work with Safari, as it's *very* standards compliant. I can't really think of the last page I went to that didn't work in Safari.

Re:They're Not There to Win (5, Insightful)

topham (32406) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541269)


The company I work for recently (less than 2 yrs) had to purchase a mac so they could test a website they were developing against Mac browsers.
Due to the nature of the site a significant user base use Macs. The user base? People with money; and lots of it.

So tell me; who do you aim for as a market?

Re:They're Not There to Win (4, Insightful)

Grave (8234) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541337)

If it renders properly in Firefox or Opera, 99.99% of the time it'll render properly in Safari. It's IE that causes problems, because it fails to follow proper standards. I've had to spend a silly amount of time trying to work around IE bugs, when my sites have been 100% correct in Firefox and Opera (and, now that I'm able to check, Safari).

If a web developer doesn't care when their site does break or look odd in Safari, maybe they don't really care that much about the enduser experience. Personally, I think if the browser has more than 1% of the market, it needs to work with my sites. 1% is still a couple million people. I'm not going to abandon that many potential visitors/customers by being an arrogant snob like you seem to suggest.

Re:They're Not There to Win (0, Redundant)

Admiral Ag (829695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541429)

YES!!!!

Mobile browsing has always sucked. The iPhone promises to change that. If the iPhone is anywhere near as popular as the iPod, then people will simply have to code their sites to be compatible with it. Why make your sites incompatible with the most popular mobile browser?

And that's all that needs to be said. (0)

objekt (232270) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541343)

In the very first post, yet! Bravo!

Re:They're Not There to Win (2, Insightful)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541347)

It's not only this but Apple provides this way consistent experience to people who will buy iPhone but don't have a Mac, those people will be able to use the same browser across their platforms... what's so hard to see that this is the main objective?

Re:They're Not There to Win (1)

bigpicture (939772) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541423)

That's probably closer to the Apple business strategy, than marketing a competing Browser. I have seen a complementing theory, that Apple will be releasing Windows Laptops and PCs, but all the peripheral software that the average consumer uses will be Apple, with the Apple logo, including the Browser. Making Vista look like an Apple OS to the average user.

Yet they still use IE... (5, Insightful)

nattt (568106) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540931)

"But the Windows world isn't like that. It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken. Especially the Windows browser market." a statement totally disproved by the fact that IE is still the #1 PC browser and it's a pile of crap with holes so big you could drive not just a Safari, but the whole of the African plains through it.

It seems that the author is holding Apple to a standard that not even the mighty giver of life to all, Microsoft, (praise be upon it), is held to.

Bundle it (2, Insightful)

porkThreeWays (895269) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541031)

Apple has the advantage Microsoft does. They have the ability to bundle. Just bundle it with iTunes or any of their other windows software that's more popular. Make it the default browser at the time of install and I bet you a lot of people will leave it as their default browser. It's underhanded, but no less than anything Microsoft has ever done.

Re:Bundle it (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541097)

Make it the default browser at the time of install

"Default" browser [kde.org] ? Does it have an extension to view foreclosures?

and I bet you a lot of people will

...report to the press that it reassigns the preferred applications, which happens to be something that spyware also likes to do.

The point of Safari for Windows XP is to allow people to test on an environment equivalent to that of the Mac or iPhone while spending only $200 for the upgrade from Windows 2000 to Windows XP, not $600+ for a Mac or iPhone.

Re:Bundle it (1)

lewellyn (38689) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541437)

Except, I have Safari running on the Windows 2000 machine at work... So, no upgrade necessary.

Is it just me? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19540937)

Is it just me, or is every article I've ever read concerning an Apple product launch predicting the "imminent doom and demise" of said product, followed by hundreds of people saying "But this time it's true"? After the first decade or so it gets boring, even for non-fanboys.

It's all about iPhone (5, Informative)

herman0221 (623834) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540947)

Apple didn't release Safari for Windows to compete - it was released so that people can develop their Web 2.0 apps for iPhone...

Re:It's all about iPhone (0, Flamebait)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541391)

No. It was not. It doesn't make any sense and it would be an stupid waste of money.

It HAS to be secure, it's Apple!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541407)

But... but... Apple has been telling me all these years that their programmers are uber-experts who "create it right the first time". So anyone saying Safari is both buggy and insecure HAS to be lying.

I mean, it's not like Quicktime or iTunes on Windows is a buggy, insecure piece of crap.

Oh wait... they are. Well then, I'm really confused, because Apple is always saying they are secure. Apple wouldn't lie, so the world must be broke.

Why can't people take it for what it is? (5, Insightful)

attemptedgoalie (634133) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540949)


As I understand it, the release of Safari to the Windows platform allows people to develop and test applets that should work on the iPhone.

Was there really a plan for Safari doing well against Firefox and IE?

It just seemed to me the best way to release a product that helps increase use of another product. Safari isn't going to make anybody any money. iPhone will make Apple a boatload of money if the product and attached cellular service are decent.

Re:Why can't people take it for what it is? (2, Informative)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541107)

From Apple [apple.com]

Apple Introduces Safari for Windows Public Beta Available Today for Mac Windows

WWDC 2007, SAN FRANCISCOJune 11, 2007Apple® today introduced Safari 3, the worlds fastest and easiest-to-use web browser for Windows PCs and Macs. Safari is the fastest browser running on Windows, based on the industry standard iBench tests, rendering web pages up to twice as fast as IE 7 and up to 1.6 times faster than Firefox 2. Safari joins iTunes® in delivering Apples legendary user experience to both Windows and Mac® users as well as full support of open Internet standards. Safari 3 features easy-to-manage bookmarks, effortless browsing with easy-to-organize tabs and a built-in RSS reader to quickly scan the latest news and information. Safari 3 public beta is available today as a free download at www.apple.com/safari.

We think Windows users are going to be really impressed when they see how fast and intuitive web browsing can be with Safari, said Steve Jobs, Apples CEO. Hundreds of millions of Windows users already use iTunes, and we look forward to turning them on to Safaris superior browsing experience too.

I think you have a bit of revisionism going on there after a poorly received release.

Not revisionism as much as ignorance. (1)

attemptedgoalie (634133) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541439)

I didn't read the press-release.

I just assumed that you'd promote a beta browser to get apps ready for the iPhone.

Apparently they did want Safari to compete. In that case, I'm thinking they rushed it.

Thanks for the info.

Umm, what? (5, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540951)

Safari on Windows has five purposes:
  1. To make it easy for web developers to test their sites with Safari.
  2. To make it easy for web developers to write iPhone web-apps.
  3. To remove the cap on Safari's market share, so that 'it must be even smaller than the Mac market share' is no longer an argument for not supporting Safari.
  4. To let potential switchers see that the Internet will work on a Mac, even though it doesn't have the big blue E.
  5. To ensure that Apple is the one bringing the first mainstream WebKit-based browser to Windows, now all the porting work has been done (by Adobe).
Which of these is the fight that Apple can't win?

Re:Umm, what? (3, Funny)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541029)

And when it crashes every time on startup, how does it accomplish any of that?

Re:Umm, what? (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541111)

Don't forget the B-word.

Re:Umm, what? (1)

The Infamous Grimace (525297) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541113)

And when it crashes every time on startup, how does it accomplish any of that?

I have the same problem; crashes every time I try to launch it. It gets only as far as displaying the menu and address bars. I've uninstalled/reinstalled it, to no avail. It crashes sometimes on my iMac as well. Safari definately has some issues that Apple should address.

-psc

Re:Umm, what? (4, Interesting)

shawnce (146129) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541199)

Take a look at the following and make sure to file defects...

Safari Beta 3.0.1 for Windows [webkit.org]

Several of the issues appear to be in the foundational libraries which Apple ported from Mac OS X and not in Safari or WebKit themselves. The beta is testing more then just WebKit or Safari on Windows.

A rule of thumb.... (1)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541409)

And when it crashes every time on startup, how does it accomplish any of that?
I have the same problem; crashes every time I try to launch it. It gets only as far as displaying the menu and address bars. I've uninstalled/reinstalled it, to no avail. It crashes sometimes on my iMac as well. Safari definately has some issues that Apple should address.
.... If you want stability don't download Beta software.

Re:Umm, what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541185)

Using it on mac, but Safari 3 has been leaps and bounds more stable than Safari 2 ever was for me.

Re:Umm, what? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541123)

1. To make it easy for web developers to test their sites with Safari.

I am Windows web developer so I am not sure how to download Safari (or any alternate browser for that matter) so I believe Apple already lost this one.

2. To make it easy for web developers to write iPhone web-apps.

I can't set my monitors resolution to the same resolution as the iPhone so how can I possibly developer for the iPhone? Also it doesn't support mobile IE so I can't developer for it in a cross platform manner.

3. To remove the cap on Safari's market share, so that 'it must be even smaller than the Mac market share' is no longer an argument for not supporting Safari.

Well I hear that Safari is buggy from customers that complain that my website doesn't work in it. So the smaller the market share the better for my customers and myself.

4. To let potential switchers see that the Internet will work on a Mac, even though it doesn't have the big blue E.

The MAC has a robust version of Microsoft Internet Explorer [microsoft.com] updated IIRC as recently as 2003 what more do they need?

5. To ensure that Apple is the one bringing the first mainstream WebKit-based browser to Windows, now all the porting work has been done (by Adobe).

Why is this needed? Windows already has Visual Basic... isn't this that same thing? Or it is more like the open standard active X controls that allow rich web development?

What do YOU think Apple is up to? (3, Insightful)

ancientt (569920) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541205)

Okay, there are 5 good excuses to release Safari, but I think that is what they are, just excuses.

I think the main reason, the real reason, is advertising. Everybody who reads "Why you don't need Safari" or "Safari vs IE" or anything like that at all is reading the equivilant to "Apple competes with Microsoft." Even people who never read anything more than a headline will think of Apple as a competitor next time they get ready to buy a computer. There are dozens, maybe hundreds of other good effects for Apple, but the core is that their main products, iPods, iPhones and Macs make more sales.

Go Apple.

Disclaimer: I do not own and have never owned a Mac (though I have used and supported them.) I secretly hope that Apple will release an i386 open source release some day.

Re:Umm, what? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541231)

You missed a big one.

Making money from Google and Yahoo searches. You don't think those search bars are FREE do you?

Re:Umm, what? (1)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541233)

Which of these is the fight that Apple can't win?

this one [duggmirror.com]

Re:Umm, what? (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541279)

The "iPhone SDK" argument keeps being put forth by Dave Schroeder and other Apple defenders and it really doesn't hold up to scrutiny. Aside from anything else, Jobs himself contradicted this argument when he presented the browser at WWDC, going so far as to predict an intended 25% marketshare at some point in the near future.

Even if the argument was to be taken seriously, as an SDK Safari sucks. The UI is designed to be a close clone of the Mac version, it's not possible to force the browser to work in "iPhone" mode, resizing the window and turning off features unavailable in the iPhone version (from plug-ins to UI features not implemented there), and the developers were so obsessed with speed issues they compiled it to run only on recent CPUs, with features such as SSE required (yet not tested for - users getting crashes with "COREGRAPHICS.DLL" should note this is the reason why.) An "SDK" doesn't need to be fast, especially if the aim is to replicate the environment of a much slower machine.

The reality is that Safari is what it claims to be, an alternative web browser for the PC, almost certainly aimed at driving up Safari's marketshare and forcing developers to take it seriously. It is not an SDK. It is moronic to think a desktop browser with no serious debugger features and no UI emulation environment is intended to be primarily a developer's tool.

And it sucks, it was a dumb move on Apple's part to release the beta without more extensive internal testing, it's highly unpopular and has done Apple no end of damage. They should withdraw the beta immediately, do damage control, and release the "real thing" only after a lot more thought.

And why does IE still hold about 80% of the market (5, Insightful)

chriss (26574) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540953)

It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken. Especially the Windows browser market. ...

Unforgiving the smallest error? Let's check the market share of IE again ...

Seriously, I wouldn't expect Safari to become a major force on Windows, I don't think that even Apple expects a lot. But to claim that the Windows world is driven by quality while the Apple world is cozy is just stupid. IE was crap for years and Firefox is still at 10% market share. Most people stick with what they know (usually Windows), so the amount of "switchers" we see is a sign that quality actually can work for people who look somewhat further, but most people never do.

Re:And why does IE still hold about 80% of the mar (1)

Jon.Laslow (809215) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541133)

Hello, Pot? This it Kettle. You're black! Seriously, you seem to be fairly unforgiving....

Re:And why does IE still hold about 80% of the mar (2, Insightful)

frogstar_robot (926792) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541373)

Unforgiving the smallest error? Let's check the market share of IE again ...

That statement does have some merit if you are a third-party Windows development house. Windows is MS' own personal playground so they have more latitude to make a hash of things. This isn't true of anything that directly competes with either an MS product or one of the biggies like Adobe and Intuit. The people behind Opera seem to understand this.

Re:And why does IE still hold about 80% of the mar (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541447)

The 90's called they want their statistics back.

2007 IE7 IE6 IE5 Fx Moz S O
May 19.2% 38.1% 1.5% 33.7% 1.3% 1.5% 1.6%

And the problem is? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19540957)

Much as the haters will disagree, Steve Jobs hit a home run on this one. The Windows crowd probably won't be satisfied, but by releasing Safari on Windows, Apple gets plenty of free exposure AND plenty of criticism which they can use to build a better browser on OSX. Apple most likely isn't hoping that Windows users will pick Safari over other browsers; they just want Windows users to download and try it out. And if the download numbers AND the blog buzz is any indication, it was a huge success.

Re:And the problem is? (1, Funny)

fbjon (692006) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541157)

if the download numbers AND the blog buzz is any indication
Download numbers: cutting-edge investigative statistics. Blog buzz: the pinnacle of profound journalism.

Buggy Beta? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19540961)

Oh no! A buggy beta!

Windows users accept crap software as a matter of course. Why else would IE be so popular?

Safari for Windows just isn't Windows enough. (0)

djupedal (584558) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540965)

Well, then - Windows is just going to have to change, isn't it.

As they say...

Conquer anger
with lack of anger;
bad, with good;
stinginess, with a gift;
a liar, with truth.

no competition (3, Insightful)

TRRosen (720617) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540967)

They must be right no one could make a browser thats better then IE.....except for maybe Apple, Mozzilla, Opera, Konqueror.

Maybe it's the comfort factor (1)

nhstar (452291) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540971)

I'm not really an apple user, love the interface and such, just never made the switch. I am, however, a Linux user and take great pride in making my work-enforced Windows laptop look and function a little more like my home Debian machines...

With the Intel Platform now standard for Mac, the transfer of Safari to Windows was far less work than it would have been in the beginning.

If nothing else, it does give the Apple-philes a way to do the same and stay with the warm Apple-feel if they're needing to work in a Windows environment. Ever get stuck having to use IE and get annoyed when you hit +L?

~Star

Re:Maybe it's the comfort factor (2, Informative)

pyite (140350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541141)

With the Intel Platform now standard for Mac, the transfer of Safari to Windows was far less work than it would have been in the beginning.

Not really. If you put CPU specific code in a browser, you should just shoot yourself and admit failure as a developer and/or software engineer. In addition, Safari's rendering comes from WebCore, which is a combination of KHTML (from the KDE folks) and KWQ (which Apple wrote as an adapter). KHTML was running on multiple platforms way before Apple decided to use it.

Re:Maybe it's the comfort factor (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541451)

New versions of WebKit don't use KWQ, they have a cleaner abstraction layer. I think Safari might use some CPU-specific code for things like scaling images (vector code), but those are in external libraries, rather than the core browser. I've not looked at the JavaScript runtime, but a JS engine that incorporated a JIT would also be CPU-specific. I don't believe the WebKit one does, however.

Not really news, not really unique to Windows (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540975)

Microsoft has got the same crap for doing bad ports for Apple. Eventually they stopped trying to port apps to that platform. Maybe it became too much of a pain. I expect Apple to not have learnt from Microsoft's mistakes here and will do the same. Do I really expect Apple to keep up doing this and release frequent patches to the Windows port, and doing a Safari 4 and 5 for Windows too? I don't really think so.

Re:Not really news, not really unique to Windows (2, Informative)

TRRosen (720617) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541131)

Of course Apple will keep up with the updates for safari for windows. it has for years! The thing most people forget is that 90% of Safari had already been ported to windows. Safaris rendering is done with webkit(based on Konqueror). This was ported to windows long ago to support the ITMS portion of iTunes.(All rendered in webkit).

People use IE because its there. but look what Apples doing...bundling Quicktime/iTunes/Safari in one download. a whole lot of people are going to have Safari..there already...because they downloaded it with iTunes. hmmmm Using your dominace in one market to enter another....thanks for the tip Bill.

People Just Don't Get It (1)

cabjf (710106) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540981)

Anyone who believes that Apple is really out for browser marketshare in the Windows world just doesn't get it. Safari is on Windows as a tool for iPhone developers, or should I just say web developers, to use standards that will work on the iPhone. Even without considering the "third party support" for the iPhone, the rest of the web still needs to look ok on the iPhone in order for the web browsing features to be worth a damn. Maybe grabbing some larger portion of the browser market is a way to encourage developers to test their sites on Safari, but it is not the main focus no matter how Jobs may have portrayed it.

Re:People Just Don't Get It (1)

frogstar_robot (926792) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541345)

Anyone who believes that Apple is really out for browser marketshare in the Windows world just doesn't get it. Safari is on Windows as a tool for iPhone developers, or should I just say web developers, to use standards that will work on the iPhone.

That take on things makes more sense than any other but why the hell is Jobs throwing up little presentation slides that depict an Opera- and Firefox-less world? Is this just a glitch in the circuits that keep him from being affected by his own Reality Distortion Field? Methinks Jobs is annoyed by all the Camino and Firefox users even if iPhone support is the primary motivation for this.

Is Apple really trying for market share? (1)

frdmfghtr (603968) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540987)

Apple may believe that it can enter and dominate at least the "alternative" Windows browser market as it did the media player space. But this is an entirely new and unfamiliar world for Apple. Direct competition on a level-playing field that Apple doesn't control just isn't Apple's thing.

Safari on Windows will fail.


I didn't think that Apple was trying to get marketshare in the Windows browser world. Safari is there to provide a means for developing iPhone apps was my understanding.

Is Elgan trying to create some sort of fight that Apple isn't even trying to win, or am I mistaken?

Not Really... (1)

Bones3D_mac (324952) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540989)

They seem to think Apple's reasoning for releasing Safari on Windows is to somehow take on Internet Explorer on its own turf. However, this is not the case.

Most likely, Safari was released on Windows to promote the iPhone. Sort of a way of saying "this is what you *could* be getting if you had an iPhone". Also, Apple knows Windows-based iPhone developers are going to want to take advantage of their so-called "sweet solution" for 3rd party apps. Safari provides these developers with the necessary runtime environment.

Besides, Apple would rather have Windows users buying Macs instead of having these users mooch the freebie software off them.

Fear Uncerntainty Doubt (5, Insightful)

BladeMelbourne (518866) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540991)

FUD.

I will use Safari frequently for development. And when I can (in an upcoming release) specify a proxy server (to get rid of advertisements) I will use it more often.

I am not an Apple fanboy, and I even had font issues with Safari on Windows. The problem is now fixed.

Mike Elgan can go back into his hole - I don't give a crap what FUD he wants to spread. It sounds like there is not enough fresh air circulating in his mothers basement... either that or he is endorsing company blog "clog" spam.

Re:Fear Uncerntainty Doubt (2, Funny)

BladeMelbourne (518866) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541035)

Streuth! I got bitten by a typo.

Perhaps it's still about the Mac (3, Interesting)

LS (57954) | more than 7 years ago | (#19540993)

There may be another reason besides iPhone development that Safari has been brought to Windows. If you are a Mac user, you should know that Safari still doesn't work on a lot of websites, forcing you to use an alternative browser. Perhaps if Safari even got only 5% market share on Windows, the combined amount of safari installations out there would be enough for most commercial sites to make sure their pages are safari compatible. This would benefit Mac users as well, and drive more people to stick with Safari instead of installing Firefox, Camino, or Opera.

LS

Dvorak School (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541005)

The insular Apple universe is a relatively gentle place, an Athenian utopia where Apple's occasional missteps are forgiven, all partake of the many blessings of citizenship, and everyone feels like they're part of an Apple-created golden age of lofty ideas and superior design. But the Windows world isn't like that. It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken.

+5 Hilarious

It's about OS X, not Windows (1)

astrosmash (3561) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541011)

Safari/Win32 serves two purposes:
  1. It allows web developers to verify that their web sites work with Safari, which is important to both the OS X and iPhone platforms since most developers don't have an extra Mac kicking around for testing. It's clear that Safari/Win32 was designed to render as close as possible to the native OS X version as possible, right down to the font rendering.
  2. It allows people who are curious about OS X to try out a fundamental OS X application, and in that case you'd want that experience to be as authentic as possible. If Apple was serious about challenging IE and Firefox on Windows they would've developed a Windows web browser, but obviously not what they're trying to do. It's simply about increasing OS X exposure to those who are curious.

Several thoughts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541017)

Although Steve didn't say it, I'm pretty sure the primary motivations for porting Safari to Windows were to allow Windows web app developers to test for Safari compatibility and iPhone compatibility.

On the Mac, I use Camino, so I'm not a Safari fan. That said, on Windows I do prefer Safari over Firefox or IE. Its just much faster than Firefox. And despite the initial failings, I tend to trust its security over IE6 or IE7.

That said: I do question the wisdom of Apple using its "brushed metal" interface on Windows for both iTunes and Safari. It feels like the equivalent of Word 6 for Mac (which felt like a Windows app).

Pussy Critics (4, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541041)

Athens wasn't some pussocracy where "missteps [were] forgiven". It ruled a Greek empire by serial mass murder, like anyone else, even though it was eventually defeated by its infamously singleminded military rival Sparta. It invented the democracy on which ours is loosely based, featuring corrosive public (and private) debate that defined our arts of rhetoric and logic.

Apple isn't a pussocracy, either - smart people there survive up against Microsoft's monopoly by their wits, in the market, periodically revolutionizing it. Getting Athens and Apple so wrong discredits the rest of Mike Elgan's analysis. If you're going to argue from caricature analogy, only cartoons will be persuaded. If you're making such a discreditable attack on an absent target too busy to spend time debating your niche, you're a pussy.

Re:Pussy Critics (2, Insightful)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541229)

Athens wasn't some pussocracy where "missteps [were] forgiven".

He probably meant to say, "Olympian" rather than "Athenian", although even the Gods had their problems.

From my perspective... (1, Insightful)

pw700z (679598) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541061)

I basically boot into OSX to test stuff in Safari. My MacBook Pro is essentially a Vista laptop, and the best PC I have ever owned. Now that Safari works in Vista, i have no compelling reason to boot into OSX. If someone comes out with a vista laptop as nice as a MacBook Pro, then apple will really have something to worry about. Safari on Windows means OSX has become less compelling for me!

Re:From my perspective... (1)

Carrot007 (37198) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541189)

Then you were either never apple's target or you are deluding yourself.

Either way, get over it.

You are all wrong... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541067)

It's all about making more bucks trough the Google sponsored search box.

RTFA and stop finding excuses (0, Troll)

A Friendly Troll (1017492) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541091)

FTFA: John Lilly, Mozilla's chief operating officer, focused on the part of the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) keynote where Jobs spelled out existing browser shares of Microsoft Corp.'s Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari -- 78%, 15% and 2%, respectively -- before displaying another pie chart that showed Safari with about a quarter of the market, IE with the remainder.

I've posted that already [slashdot.org] . Here's the link (with screenshots) [jubjubs.net] , if you don't want to read my previous comment.

Steve Jobs wants to push Firefox out. Period. It doesn't have anything to do with opening a development platform for the iPhone. Stop making those excuses! Apple is going to bundle Safari with iTunes and QuickTime in hope of massive market penetration, and in their vision, there is no room for alternative browsers.

Re:RTFA and stop finding excuses (1)

the linux geek (799780) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541163)

Indeed. Most of the comments so far have been along the "It's just for iPhone dev!" line, but anyone who actually reads the Apple rhetoric instead of the reports of apple apologists attempting to make up for what a worthless browser it is would realize that.

Re:RTFA and stop finding excuses (1)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541291)

Given Safari's lack of extensibility (no plethora of easily installed adblock plugins, for example), content providers are probably crossing their fingers in the hopes that this comes to pass. As someone who can't stand any of Apple's brushed-metal UI-infected software, I'm quite the opposite.

Re:RTFA and stop finding excuses (1)

iknownuttin (1099999) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541325)

Apple is going to bundle Safari with iTunes and QuickTime in hope of massive market penetration, and in their vision, there is no room for alternative browsers.

I see that the Beta, anyway, is free. Do you think that Apple will charge for it? I don't get why Apple would want to or care about pushing the other browsers out of the market considering that it's a money losing business. You have an interesting perspective, though (i.e. Not "Trollish" at all). It could make sense if Apple is gunning for some sort of iPhone & internet & something else? combination that I can't foresee. What are you thinking?

Safari Download [apple.com]

Re:RTFA and stop finding excuses (1)

echeola (1053894) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541385)

I heard that apple gets a fraction of a penny for each search from it's tool bar from Google or Yahoo. Maybe they don't need to get a huge market share or "win". Maybe they only need a 2% bump in market share to make more than enough money to pay for the development or make money.

Re:RTFA and stop finding excuses (1)

pohl (872) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541397)

Steve Jobs wants to push Firefox out. Period.

I have to break it to you: your period is a bit premature. Come one, did you consider the hypothesis that the second pie chart was a playful joke that fell flat on the audience?

Can't people try it and make up their own minds? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541101)

I'm a linux user myself but I actually like Safari on Windows and the UI criticisms aren't valid at all given the number of windows app that use their own toolkits. Furthermore, not only have Microsoft's default themes always been absolutely hideous but Explorer is a bloated POS. I have a couple of Windows VM images that I use for testing and the first thing I do is install a proper window manager like bblean.

I don't understand all this childish anti-safari rhetoric and hand waving, it's a web browser ported from a better designed platform and nobody is being forced to use it. The only explanation I can think of is that the PC faithful realize it's giving everyone a taste of how simple the computing experience can be.

If Apple's picking a fight... (1)

Francisco_G (676828) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541129)

...it is a fight in which they have nothing to lose.

SJ - BG (0, Redundant)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541151)

SJ: "Look, Billy, we're gonna be releasing Safari for Windows."

BG: "Why bother, Stevie? You really think you're gonna do us any damage with that?"

SJ: "Nah. It's really more an iPhone thing."

BG: "Whatever."

Safari for Windows Downloaded how many times? (1)

jointm1k (591234) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541155)

Vegeta, what is the download level of Safari for Windows?

IT IS OVER ONE MILLION!!!

Oh, we have nothing to worry about. Clearly a failure.

Re:Safari for Windows Downloaded how many times? (1)

the linux geek (799780) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541179)

FF32 had over that in it's first 24 hours, and that was without the same degree of hype that Safari is getting. Cut the fanboyism and clean off that foam around the mouth.

could be something else (2, Interesting)

pohl (872) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541161)

But the Windows world isn't like that. It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken.

The most amusing aspect of romanticizing the cold cruelty of the windows world is how none of it seems to be directed it Microsoft itself. Or, at least effectively directed at microsoft.

That aside, I think it's premature to pretend that we know the strategy of the Safari/Windows release at this point. True, Bill gates is afraid [blogspot.com] that Apple is trying to "fix the web" and neutralize IE as his lock-in tool, but couldn't there be more to Apple's strategy than that? Might this be a shakedown cycle for the core libraries on Windows for some other purpose? After all, Vista finally has the plumbing. A revival of the YellowBox? Or the introduction of some CoreAnimation-based web technology that would simultaneously allow for 1) a more dynamic iPhone SDK (look at the pins drop in the google maps demo) and 2) something to compete with flash. I guess these thoughts are inspired by the All Things Digital interview with Jobs and Gates. Steve seemed to be very interested in conquering rich clients that leveraged services from the cloud.

"Safari for Windows just isn't Windows enough." (1)

QuietLagoon (813062) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541167)

His comment is way off base, another so-called "anaylst" who hasn't a clue.

Safari is not on Windows to grab marketshare in the Windows browser marketspace.

Safari is on Windows so that apps written for Safari on the iPhone can also be run on Windows. Apple is beginning to do what Microsoft greatly feared Netscape was trying to do, i.e., make the underlying OS disappear and make the browser the application platform.

Isn't that what all these Web 2.0 AJAX apps are all about?

Rabid wolves... (1)

CmdrPorno (115048) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541177)

"...any company that makes even the smallest error..."

Umm, ever hear of Microsoft? They may be one of the world's most hated companies, but their customers haven't turned on them in droves. A handful have switched to OS X or Linux, but for the most part people still use MS products.

Why is this a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541209)

Company ports software to new platform.

PUBLIC OUTRAGE OH NOEZ

No matter why they ported it or how good it is, there's no problems. If people like it, but couldn't use it before due to the lack of a Mac, they can use it now, and there will be much happiness. If people don't like it, it's not like Safari's out to murder your IEfox, is there?

Let's Develop *for* Safari (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19541211)

I find it interesting that people are justifying Apple's move to release a buggy beta just because it's supposed to be a "development environment". However, had any other company done so, everyone would be crying foul. I thought the point was to develop to standards. Suddenly, nobody seems to care about that. Since the iPhone is running Safari which should be a FULL standards compliant browser, why can't developers use another standards compliant browser? Is my AJAX better than your AJAX? The other point everyone is missing is how the release was presented to the world. This wasn't an obscure paragraph somewhere written for developers. This was Steve Jobs standing in front of the interenets, hailing the greatest browser ever. As many reviewers have shown, he basically lied when he showed that Safari was faster/better than Firefox and IE.

Who cares if they 'win' (1)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541253)

every non-IE browser out there is a victory for web standards in general.

who is picking a fight? (1)

swell (195815) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541261)


Safari adds an option to the mix. With hundreds of gigabytes available, it costs nothing to add Safari to your existing list of browsers. If you choose to uninstall your other browsers you may have an occasional problem.

Safari is new in this environment and relatively new overall. How long has it taken Firefox and Exploder to reach their current state of development?

Why the vitriol? It seems that there are some knee-jerk reactions, both positive and negative, by certain people to anything new, especially if it comes from Apple.

I hardly use Safari on my Mac in the first place (1)

dethl (626353) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541275)

The inability for Safari to have plugins keeps me firmly rooted in the Firefox cause. I enjoy Adblock Plus and Tab Mix Plus. I can't get that kind of functionality on Safari.

That said - Safari isn't here to win the fight right from the start. iTunes required a bit of time and effort on the part of the Apple developers to turn it into the powerhouse media player that it is today (both on Mac and Windows).

Yes I'm a Mac fanboy but hell, I'm typing this on a Windows laptop using Firefox. Apple gets many things right but they aren't immune to failures.

I'm just glad I have another alternative (1)

bl8n8r (649187) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541277)

Too many years of having to do it the windows way. This is nice.

QT, ITunes and IPhone integration in Safari (1)

RepCentral (1059932) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541303)

If Apple integrated faster versions of their software into Safari then I would pick it up.
Might make a good "gateway" application to buying more Apple products.

Oh'really? (1)

Marcos Eliziario (969923) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541339)

"It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken."
Oh yes! I know, just like what happened to Microsoft when after years of good service, they had a security flaw on windows. Poor Microsoft! Those demanding PC users! they can't forgive a mistake!

Elgan used to be the editor of Windows Mag (3, Insightful)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541359)

So of course he might have a few of his own prejudices.....

One more browser on Windows doesn't hurt anything. Because Safari is based on K, it's tougher to smack down with silly code crunches, although they shouldn't have released it until they tested it JUST A BIT MORE. How embarrassing to release a browser that has to have six patches on its first freaking release day.

But Elgan is wrong about Apple. His background at Windows Magazine and HP's in-house organ haven't given him much insight into the seige mentality at Apple. It's plainly been a survivor mentality with a few stellar successes and a few big craters. I wouldn't leave it to Elgan, however, to comment on Apple's mentality when he's clearly been a bit of a stooge of the Windows mindset.

Look at iTunes, QuickTime, and other cross-platform Apple successes, just like Microsoft has theirs (Office and Entourage for the Mac). More competition is good.

Unforgiving? (1)

wfs2mail.com (794623) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541379)

But the Windows world isn't like that. It's a cold, unforgiving place where nothing is sacred, users turn like rabid wolves on any company that makes even the smallest error, and no prisoners are taken.

If the windows world was as cold and unforgiving as you say, microsoft would have been buried long ago. They've made many blunders and missteps, but are still around. So much for that theory.

Hipocracy? (1)

RalphBNumbers (655475) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541383)

Does John Lilly's ranting about the horrors of "corporate-controlled, duopoly-oriented, not-the-Web thinking" strike anyone else as amusingly hypocritical when he's an executive for one of the current duopoly of corporations that control ~95% of the web browser market, and his company's flagship browser is arguably less standards compliant than the new entry he's railing against.

Misses the mark (2, Insightful)

watchingeyes (1097855) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541425)

I'm not going to bother reading the F article, because based on the summary alone I can tell the author misses the mark. This is primarily an iPhone SDK for Windows. Apple would probably be happy with a 1 or 2% marketshare boost due to Safari on Windows. I highly doubt they expect to be the dominant browser in a year or 2.

A zero cost advertisement 'war'... (5, Insightful)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 7 years ago | (#19541457)

So how much is this 'war' costing Apple? They simply recompiled Safari and released it for free on a web server, at a total cost of what - $10,000? It is probably the cheapest Apple advertisement campaign ever.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?