“The fact that Google believes that they can launch a browser based on new technology means that the market is alive.” –Blizzard
It is a pretty bizarre “market” where the major participants are, in market share order:
- a repeatedly convicted monopolist that makes no money off its product in this market
- a non-profit that makes no money (directly) off its product in this market, only indirectly off ads1
- a company that makes no money off its product in this market
- a company that actually makes money2 off its product in this market
- (probably up to 3 or 4 soon) a company that sells a lot of ads, in large part through #2, but which won’t make any money off its product in this market
So, yes, it is a market, given a very, very broad definition of ‘market’. But a very unusual one.
This is not necessarily a bad thing- the same standard that makes it difficult to make a differentiated, profitable browser also makes for more innovation at the web app and operating system levels3. But as google hinted in their intro comic, getting innovation to happen at the same layer as the standard is hard. (Some related thoughts here.)
Will be interesting, as always, to see where this goes from here.