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Sunday, January 6, 2008

AOL Confirms the End for Netscape Navigator

Posted by @ 6:16 pm

AOL announced last week that it will no longer continue support and development of the world’s first web browser, Netscape Navigator, as of 1st February 2008. Netscape’s director Tom Drapeau explained that because Netscape couldn’t capture Microsoft’s Internet Explorer market share, AOL won’t put any further resources into Netscape, and will instead focus on developing its web business.

AOL has encouraged Netscape users to take on Mozilla’s Firefox instead:

“AOL’s focus on transitioning to an ad-supported web business leaves little room for the size of investment needed to get the Netscape browser to a point many of its fans expect it to be. Given AOL’s current business focus and the success the Mozilla Foundation has had in developing critically-acclaimed products, we feel it’s the right time to end development of Netscape branded browsers, hand the reins fully to Mozilla and encourage Netscape users to adopt Firefox.”

The popular browser of the 90′s, once commanded 90% of the market and has been running for 13 years, but has since fallen behind. It was purchased by AOL back in 1999 and was quickly updated to Netscape 6 which was the first Netscape-branded Mozilla based browser.

Since then AOL has had a string of bad luck with Netscape and although it’s reported that they have “invested a great deal of time and energy” they have just not been able to compete with Internet Explorer.

Let us know what you think on the rise and fall of Netscape by leaving a comment below.

Courtney Mills Courtney is an online marketing and communications specialist at ineedhits - a leading search engine marketing firm with over 16 years experience. Courtney has been living and breathing online marketing for over 5 years. She specializes in web and communication marketing, while providing news and opinion to online marketing communities.

View Courtney Mills's profile

Discussion (2 - comments)

If the rumours were true, Microsoft pressurised Netscape to sell them their browser in the late 90s. Having failed to do this, it looks like they won anyway. Heres hoping Firefox gain some market share.

By Anonymous - January 8, 2008

It was roughly in 1999 that I wrote to Netscape, recommending that they CUT DOWN their browser, to exclude such things as the password and the various configuration options.

The purpose was to create a unified INTERNET CAFÉ browser, that did not change its look and feel every time a customer altered it.

This product was to be sold to cafés worldwide. A smaller market, but a vital one.

It is just one market niche they missed.

Charles Douglas Wehner

By Charles - January 8, 2008

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