RockMelt + Facebook = A New Social Browser In The Making?
Netscape Wunderkind Marc Andreessen
Appears To Be On A Comeback Trail
NYTimes report, Netscape founder Marc Andreessen appears to be making a comeback, this time with a new browser called RockMelt.
Not much is revealed about RockMelt now, but the NYT indicates that the browser may be designed to display Facebook updates and other features catering to Web users.
Google introduced their Chrome browser last fall while recently Microsoft and Apple have brought out improved versions of their browsers, Internet Explorer and Safari respectively.
Although the NYT report says Facebook is "not aware of any details about RockMelt", the fact that this popular social networking site, which has over 250 million users, was mentioned will be enough to create some buzz.
Maybe Facebook is not telling but if there's going to be any tie-up at some point down the road, it will have something to do with a social browser.
Already, Flock is one such social browser incorporating Firefox features like its add-ons and some of the social networking features from Facebook, Twitter and others.
With Andreessen's backing in this new start-up, and he's on the board of Facebook, there has got to be more than meets the eye.
Will it be a surprise if the man, who once pioneered the Netscape browser, has something up his sleeves? And, maybe, he's aiming for a rematch with Microsoft.
Remember the so-called browser wars of the 1990s when Microsoft took on Netscape which introduced millions to the Internet? Well, Microsoft won the war in the end. And today, Netscape is off the Internet map.
Meanwhile, Mozilla Firefox has made great inroads as a browser of choice for many users since its introduction in 2004, capturing 23 percent of the market and forcing Microsoft's share to drop to 68 per cent.
In its heydays, Microsoft dominated with more than 90 percent of the browser market.
It would also be interesting to see how Google move into contention. The Mountain View giant has garnered over 30 million users for its Chrome browser following its launch last year.
Google is looking at the "cloud-computing" approach when it recently stated its intention to introduce a new operating system called Chrome OS that will support its browser.
Its official blog post says: "We designed Google Chrome for people who live on the Web - searching for information, checking email, catching up on the news, shopping or just staying in touch with friends."
If Andreessen remains true to form as the comeback kid with RockMelt, who knows, a new browser war may well be on the horizon. We just have to wait and see. - Markk