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Extension support could bolster Google Chrome's market share

It's been a long time coming, but Google Chrome is now available for the Mac and Linux platforms, but the browser's support for extensions may have a larger impact.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor on

It has been a long time coming, but Google Chrome is now available for the Mac and Linux platforms, but the browser's support for extensions may have a larger impact when it comes to market share.

Extensions have been the strength of Mozilla's Firefox browser and now Chrome has more than 300 of them. Firefox has about 5,000 extensions and a vast library, but Google is off to a good start (see Google blog).

The gallery for Chrome extensions looks solid, but it has a tough Mozilla act to follow.

The larger question is whether extensions support can move the needle on market share. According to Net Applications, Microsoft's Internet Explorer has 64 percent market share followed by 25 percent for Firefox. From there, Safari and Chrome (roughly 4 percent each) duke it out for the scraps.

Given the market share outlook, it's notable that the the long awaited Mac and and Linux betas have launched.

According to Google's blog:

  • Google said the Mac beta "took longer than we expected."
  • The Mac Chrome beta focused on a clean design and fast performance.
  • The Chrome for Linux beta is focused on tight integration, speed and features that fit natively with the operating system.

With a Mac beta, Chrome can now battle Safari more effectively.

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