Web browsers, as their name says, allows you to browse the web. Basically, a web browser is a piece of software that you use every time you visit a website. The most commonly used ones are:
- Internet Explorer (IE)
- Firefox (FF)
IE is a Microsoft product at comes installed as the default web browser on anyone running Microsoft, therefore making it one of the most used browsers internationally among PC users.
IE requires you, the user, to upgrade when new releases are done. This can be nice for some users as some people do not like change and generally with IE, when there’s a new release, there’s very often a learning curve required for the user.
FF has been developed by Mozilla, a global community of people whose main intention is to ensure the internet is developed in a way that benefits everyone. They have been developing FF since 1998 and FF has definitely given IE / Microsoft a run for their money.
FF updates itself – the software is able to detect when a new release has been launched. This can be very annoying, but for some it’s nice – see for yourself and make a call which works best for you.
Safari is the Apple browser and like IE with PC users, is the most used browser with those running on Apple Macs. Safari has recently allowed PC users to now download and install Safari on their Windows platform, thereby increasing its use / popularity.
Opera, developed by Opera Software ASA (originally Telenor) in 1994, is another popular browser. It’s definitely not the most popular, but there are loads of people who love this browser. It is however a very popular mobile browser for people who are able to run a web browser on their cellphones.
Chrome was recently launched by Google as the latest addition to their online monopoly. Chrome is quick, has a great look, and naturally ties into Google Search quite nicely.
Which browser to use?
A browser is certainly a matter of preference. IE and Safari for example do a smoothing effect on websites whereas FF currently does not. Some do tabs and others don’t. Some have certain features that are better than others, so the best way to find out which one you prefer the most is to download them and play with them.
Websites and Web Browsers
When developing a website, one needs to ensure that the webpage looks correct across all browsers. This always throws a spanner in the works as every browser can treat things differently. This is not your problem, as the client, but your web agency’s problem. Make sure that when you go through a web development process with a web agency, you either check your new website in the different browsers or make sure that your web agency has done the necessary checking.
Web browsers are necessary and pretty much the only way you can search or browse websites or the internet. So, to find the one that suits you best, consider downloading the different ones mentioned above and get “in the know” about web browsers and their different capabilities.