There’s a war going on, a web browser war, where you are the grand prize. The participating players all want to be your number one choice when surfing the web, and the #1 reason for this is search engine ad dollars. That’s right, every web browser has a search field connected to a premiere search engine, and although you can swap it, you can be sure that the company behind the browser will earn money whenever you search with this field, and then click a link. Apple does it with the Safari search field, Mozilla does it in Firefox, Flock does it, and so on. Even Microsoft does it, with the extra spinoff to try and add more users to its Live Search site, another war going on with Google there.
So Flock took money, $15 million, and it doesn’t surprise me one bit. As Mark Evans notes, there’s a lot of potential money in social networks in the future, but the immediate money is in search engine traffic. To be hones, I don’t think Flock will be the leading web browser for social network users in the future. It’s more likely that the big players, being Firefox and Internet Explorer, adds this functionality through brilliant extensions, or that the social networks repack and rebrand browsers to release themselves.
There’s a war going on.
Thord Daniel Hedengren is a designer, writer, and blogger, and also the former editor of The Blog Herald. He used to be a hotshot in the gaming industry in Sweden, but sold everything and went International. Most recently he wrote a book called Smashing WordPress: Beyond the Blog, and does loads of kickass design.