Marco Arment brings up the most fascinating aspect related to Ed Bott’s report that Google may not be renewing the search deal that essentially keeps Firefox (and really, Mozilla) alive:
What if Bing steps in to fill Google’s shoes?
That would basically mean Microsoft would be funding the demise of their own product, Internet Explorer.
But because Firefox has a huge user base, this is something that Microsoft would have to consider. Such a deal could potentially finally turn Bing from a multi-billion dollar suck hole into an actual business.
I’m also with Marco — this just makes me feel sad for Firefox. I remember when I started using it instead of IE; it was so refreshingly fast. It felt like it opened up a whole range of new possibilities for the web after years of Microsoft stagnation.
Then Firefox too became bloated. And it slowed down. I started using Mozilla’s Camino (their Mac-focused browser) as a result. Then Chrome arrived, in a similar way to the way that Firefox had. It was refreshingly fast…
The (potentially) good news for Mozilla is that now Chrome seems to be continuing that cycle. It’s gaining huge amounts of market share (as Firefox had before it) but the product itself is getting a ton of stuff crammed into it. It’s getting bloated…
But Marco is right, the real key going forward is mobile. And Mozilla is going to have a very hard time competing there simply because they do not control their own platform.
Firefox Phone, anyone?