Mozilla: Firefox may have lost 9M downloads over Microsoft glitch
A "technical error" could have cost the Firefox browser up to 9 million downloads during the 15 months in which Microsoft failed to show a court-mandated browser choice screen in Windows 7 Service Pack 1. So claims Mozilla's general counsel and vice president of business affairs, Harvey Anderson, in a new entry on his personal blog.
As noted on InfoWorld, Microsoft's (NASDAQ: MSFT) settlement of a European Union antitrust case in 2009 saw the company agreeing to present new Windows users with a screen where they can opt for an additional web browser to either coexist or replace Internet Explorer.
The screen did not appear in Windows 7 SP1 however, and was only reinstated more than a year later after complaints were filed with antitrust regulators. Microsoft had blamed the result on a technical error.
"Cumulatively, 6 to 9 million Firefox browser downloads were lost during this period," writes Anderson, who noted that daily Firefox downloads decreased by 63 percent, to a low of 20,000, just prior to the fix. In addition, "Firefox downloads increased 150 percent to approximately 50,000 per day" after the fix, he noted.
The technical glitch decreased downloads and diminished the effectiveness of the remedy ordered by the European Commission in 2009, added Anderson.