Microsoft re-enters the browser war!

After Netscape Navigator was eclipsed by Microsoft’s  Internet Explorer as the browser of choice for many – mainly because it was hard-wired into Windows initially – the world of internet browsers has seen first the rise of Firefox from the Mozilla Foundation as an alternative open source option and then the succession to Google’s Chrome and it’s huge market presence.
I’ve written about Google’s dominance and the alternatives to Chrome before in “Just Google it …
Now Microsoft has stirred from its inactivity in the browser market place. It has ditched its proprietary Edge browser and replaced it with … Microsoft Edge. No confusion there then!
It is interesting because it will run on MacOS as well as Windows, something the old Edge didn’t do, and will use the same open source code base – Chromium – as Google’s Chrome and of course Brave (my browser of choice). This allows them to use Extensions written for that code base. I already use many extensions written for Chrome in my Brave browser.
What will this mean for Google especially as Microsoft Edge will effectively have a built-in ad-blocker? Who knows. It’s certain that as more users decide to use the Microsoft version of Chromium, so Google’s business model and revenue stream will come under attack. Will they retaliate in some way? Probably not. Interesting times.
Here’s an article that describes keyboard shortcuts that you can use with Microsoft Edge.

Paying for software services

In a recent post on another blog – Thought grazing – I wrote about the belief I had been moving towards that perhaps it was time to consider paying for software services that I’d grown to rely on. This was in the context of Google+ being “sunsetted” and the change in entitlements with Flickr that had encouraged me to move to take a Pro membership. That means that I now am paying for the following services – LastPass, iCloud, Google Drive, Vimeo, Flickr, the Adobe Photography Programme and of course my web hosting. These are all services that are core to my personal IT needs, so if I need them, I shouldn’t mind paying for them.

But now, another set of issues has emerged. Out of nowhere, I can’t remember any notification of forthcoming changes, I found that my Feedly account was not working the way it used to. I couldn’t save articles to Pocket as I’d done before, so my whole web reading and bookmarking strategy was in jeopardy. I had to consider – do I look for a different RSS reader, or do I pay-up to stay with what I’ve relied upon for a number of years – in fact all the years since Google Reader was “sunsetted” – note what a nuisance Google can be with their “free” services! Whilst at it, and to anticipate what might be just a little way down the road, I decided to subscribe to Feedly Pro AND Pocket Premium. Hopefully an increase in subscription income for the two of them will provide some security to two services that I really do rely on!

I think I’m now fully covered because I really don’t see Gmail, Google Calendar and Google Photos becoming subscription services … do you?