Google dumps Firefox from download bundle, swaps in Chrome

Mozilla's browser now an optional download with Chrome out of beta

Google Friday replaced Mozilla's Firefox with its own Chrome as the default browser in the English version of Google Pack, the search company's application bundle for Windows.

On Thursday Google dropped the "beta" label from Chrome, the browser it introduced three months ago, and issued the first production version for Windows XP and Vista.

Google Pack is a one-download collection of Google-made and third-party applications that includes Google Desktop, Google Earth, Picasa, Adobe Reader and Norton Security Scan.

Firefox remains on the list, but is not selected for download as part of Google Pack by default. Instead, the box beside it is left unchecked. That's a change from Thursday, according to an earlier version of Google Pack's download page cached by Google itself, which shows Firefox as the bundle's only browser.

Non-English versions of Google Pack, however, continue to offer Firefox, including the German- and French-language editions. Chrome is available in localized versions for about 40 different languages, German and French among them.

Mozilla has had a lucrative relationship with Google over the years. In 2007, for example, 88 percent of Mozilla's revenues , to the tune of about US$60 million, came from its deal with Google. The search company pays Mozilla for assigning it as the default search engine in Firefox, and for click-throughs on ads placed on the ensuing search results pages.

Mozilla renewed the deal with Google in August when the two inked a three-year contract that ends in November 2011.

Thursday, before Google swapped Chrome for Firefox, Mozilla's CEO welcomed the rival to the market.

"It's great to see them get to 1.0 and will mean more choices for users," said Mozilla chief executive John Lilly, in an e-mailed statement. Lilly also took the opportunity to plug his company's own browser. "Firefox 3 use has grown quickly over the last few months and we're excited to release 3.1 early next year ... competition is clearly creating better browsers than ever."

Mozilla did not immediately reply to questions Friday, including whether Lilly's take of Thursday still holds now that Google has dropped Firefox from the default download bundle.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Google Chrome

Struggling for Christmas presents this year? Check out our Christmas Gift Guide for some top tech suggestions and more.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?