It may be simply an idea whose time has come. It may be that Firefox is making enough noise to raise some eyebrows in Redmond. Either way, it looks like IE7 is on its way.
At the RSA Security Conference in San Francisco, Bill Gates announced plans for a new version of the world’s most widely used Internet browser. Experimental versions of Internet Explorer 7 are expected to be ready for testing as early as this summer. The new and improved IE is apparently being developed with security being tops on the priority list. Measures to help users avoid ‘Phishing’ scams, spyware and viruses are expected to addressed in full as Gates pointed out that Microsoft has dedicated nearly $2 billion of it’s annual research and development budget on security.
While Internet Explorer still holds in excess of 90% of the browser market share, the new Firefox browser continues to gain popularity largely from veteran surfers seeking a higher level of security.
Some statistics show Firefox with as much as 5% of the browser market. While 5% may be a far cry from IE’s 90%, it represents one of the strongest showings from a non IE browser in the past 10 years or so.