IT Support and Tech Blog

September 15, 2011   Posted by: JJ Fiasson

Firefox vs Internet Explorer vs Opera

Web browsersWhen it comes to browsing web pages on the Internet, there are a lot of options these days. The very first browser was called LYNX and was a text-only browser. That’s right, you could download images, but LYNX would not display them. Then, Netscape Mosaic was released and everything changed. Suddenly, you could see web pages as we see them today. Of course, at that time the web was SLOW (even for power users) so images were not used too much in the beginning. This was to change over the years, however.

Microsoft was quick to release their own browser (Internet Explorer) and shipped it bundled with their operating system, which enabled them to quickly gain a large market share. Mosaic eventually became Netscape Navigator which morphed into the open source Mozilla Firefox. During this time, there were many other browsers that came and went, some more popular than others. Today, it is expected that new browsers will appear in the years ahead as technology advances at a quick pace.

Internet “Exploder” Explorer

The exploder part is a joke – mostly! In all seriousness, Internet Explorer has come a long way over the years. Still, compared with Firefox and Opera, it can seem “bloated” – that is, slow running and kind of clunky. There are, however, many websites that will only load correctly in Internet Explorer, which is why they still have such a large percentage of the browser market. Today, Microsoft continues to make improvements to Internet Explorer, making it more secure and faster.

Mozilla Firefox – RIP Netscape Navigator

Firefox is the preferred browser of choice among people who know about it. With many extensions and options available, it loads pages quickly and is on the leading edge of web browser developments. The browser also helps make it safe to surf online. Overall, we have to recommend the latest version of Mozilla Firefox quite highly. From tabbed browsing to standards compliance, there’s a lot to love about Firefox. Please note that older computer users may refer to it as Foxfire no matter what you tell them!

Opera Browser

The third big player in the browser market currently is the Opera browser. Also available as a free version (and a smartphone version), it’s a good alternative for both IE and Firefox. Overall, it’s not as well supported by a large online community like Firefox and Internet Explorer, but it is sure to grow and expand in the years ahead. It’s definitely a browser to keep your eye on. Install it and play around to see what you think.

Other Browser Alternatives

There are actually other Internet browsers out there that you can try. You should remember, however, that if you get a lesser known browser there’s a bigger chance it will have bugs and there may not be a lot of support available. Still, it’s never a bad thing to experiment with different software online as long as you know it is safe.