Wrapping up 2007, I came across some very surprsing and some what disappointing news. As of February 1, 2008, AOL will stop providing ANY support for Netscape. It was only back in February when AOL announced Netscape 9 based off of Firefox 2. It was finally released in October of this year. Here are the details from the Netscape Blog:
While internal groups within AOL have invested a great deal of time and energy in attempting to revive Netscape Navigator, these efforts have not been successful in gaining market share from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. Recently, support for the Netscape browser has been limited to a handful of engineers tasked with creating a skinned version of Firefox with a few extensions.
Further, this also means the end of the planned Thunderbird based e-mail client, Netscape Mercury aka Netscape Messenger. Really a disappointment to hear this news. Granted it was more a social networking version of Firefox, but still it was another browser. Not only that, it was a browser which many people were familiar with the name. Back in the 90’s Netscape was the alternative browser over Internet Exploiter, especially for Mac users. Hopefully the current Netscape users will move over to Firefox or even Opera, anything as long as it is not Internet Exploiter.
Oddly enough I find this announcement in some ways rather amusing. Think about this for a moment, the final product has been out for a little over 2-months and AOL is throwing in the towel already? This is AOL we’re talking about here, the company that doesn’t understand the meaning of the word cancel. The company that will extend out the ‘free-trial’ for the rest of your life (and longer).
Come join the discussion: The End of Netscape at The Firefox Extension Guru’s Forum.
News Source: CyberNet News