Money Talks: Google, Mozilla Strike New Firefox Search Deal

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News Posted: Wed, Dec 21 2011 11:54 AM
Google was in position to deal a mighty blow to Mozilla and its Firefox browser. With the search agreement between Google and Mozilla expired, all Google had to do was turn its back on Mozilla, and just like that, the browser maker would have lost a ginormous portion of its revenue. In the end, however, money talks, and both sides figured out it was in their respective best interests to hammer out a new search deal, so that's what they did.

In a blog post last night, Mozilla said it "negotiated a significant and mutually beneficial revenue agreement with Google" that will extend their partnership for at least three more years.

"Under this multi-year agreement, Google Search will continue to be the default search provider for hundreds of millions of Firefox users around the world," said Gary Kovacs, CEO, Mozilla.

Mozilla stopped short of outlining specific terms of the agreement, but it's no secret Mozilla relies heavily on Google's contributions. In 2010, Mozilla's revenue was $123 million, and of that, $103 million -- or 84 percent -- came from Google. Based on those figures, you can see why it was so important for Mozilla to hammer out a new search deal.

It was also important for Google, whose Chrome browser is now the No. 2 browser in the world in terms of market share, according to StatCounter. But only by a smidgin. By StatCounter's figures, Chrome and Firefox are neck and neck at around 25 percent each. By not re-upping its search agreement, Google would have given up all the revenue that comes from a 25 percent user base.
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Glad to hear that they worked out an agreement I did not want to see the fox fade away into the sunset. So much great work has gone into it.

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Manduh replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 7:52 PM

This is excellent news, good for them! :)

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mhenriday replied on Thu, Dec 22 2011 3:32 AM

Good call on the part of the Google leadership ! It was Firefox's success that saved users from the quasi-monopoly that had been enjoyed by Microsoft with its bundled Internet Explorer - the measures taken by the European Commission, i e, levying a large fine for anti-competitive behaviour and forcing MS to include a «browser choice box» on Windows, were good, but came after Firefox had proved its viability - and maintaining the agreement with Mozilla will not only benefit Google commercially by keeping its search engine as the FF default, but also in terms of good will from the many users who appreciate Firefox both for its current usability and for its monopoly-busting history....


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Even though I use chrome, I still like the fox because it saved us from the POS that was IE 6. Can you believe then, Microsoft at that time actually had the nerve to announce that they would halt(or significantly slow) IE development. Firefox changed the game and combined with the rise of Chrome(and its many flavours), IE has had to take notice, support web standards and the newest technologies.

Another case where competition benefited everyone. Long live the Fox.

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