At the consumer level, there are the browser wars, which seem to ebb and flow between the major contenders almost month to month. Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, and others lose and gain market share in a continuous tug of war. However, for many large organizations and corporations, the officially supported browser of choice is bogged down with inertia.
The officially supported internal web browser for workstations at CBS Interactive is, and it embarrasses me to say it, Internet Explorer 6. Of course, users have long ago abandoned the official web browser in favor of Internet Explorer 8, Firefox, Chrome, or other modern web browser. It doesn't matter that the help desk does not support the newer browsers — the better security, better experience of a modern browser trumps the need for support. Firefox has become the unofficial browser chosen by users.
Stay on top of the latest Microsoft Windows tips and tricks with TechRepublic's Windows Desktop newsletter, delivered every Monday and Thursday. Automatically sign up today!
For many reasons, Microsoft is very interested in getting companies and users to migrate away from Internet Explorer 6, and recent data shows that the inertia that prevented that migration is receding. As of November 2010, Internet Explorer 6's share of commercial use is at an all-time low of 10.3%. I would expect that trend to continue, and perhaps CBS Interactive will join in the migration to a modern browser in the near future.
But what is the policy at your company? What is the officially supported browser at your organization? Has the company changed with the times or is there too much inertia? What hurdles prevent the adoption of a more modern web browser? Is it even necessary for a company to have an official browser? Have users chosen their own "official" browser?
Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.