AOL finally decided to trash its “dead” browser Netscape Navigator after several feeble attempts to repackage it and try to serve old wine in new cups. Only a few months earlier they came out with Netscape Navigator 9.0. The latest news from AOL is that they’ll stop active development work and technical support beginning February 1, 2008.
When I worked in AOL last year, I was surprised to see Netscape used as the official browser. Firefox was allowed, but nobody spoke about it openly.
Its a little sad that Netscape is officially being flushed down after the way it stole away many IE users several years ago. When I was studying for my Masters degree in Kansas State University, nobody used IE – the version then was 4.0. Netscape Navigator was the default choice for all the students for obvious reasons. But with the introduction of IE5, many switched from Netscape Navigator to IE5. From then on, Netscape lost its hold until its open-source version Firefox was released, and the rest is history.
Very few people actually use Netscape Navigator now. I just checked the logs on my website aruljohn.com and this is what I see about the browsers my visitors are using:
Thats it – only 1% of my website’s visitors use Netscape. There are more Safari and Opera users than Netscape users. RIP Netscape!