I usually try to promote the underdog as much as possible, especially when it comes to those that always seem to get squashed by the big corporate machine. So it’s no surprise that I was a big fan of Mozilla Firefox for a while. Its cleaner look, tabbed browsing, and increased security made it a worthwhile adversary to Microsoft Internet Explorer 6. But with the introduction of Windows Internet Explorer 7, I’m having second thoughts about knocking Microsoft. After using it for a couple of days, I’m really impressed.
First of all, I’m a big fan of tabbed browsing. IE 7 not only offers tabbed browsing, but offers it in an intuitive way. Instead of downloading a special plug-in to make windows open in separate tabs instead of windows, IE gives you the option, and it actually works. It even offers a thumbnail/mosaic view of all of your open pages. And there is a special blank tab that allows you to open a new tab, in addition to using CTRL+T.
Second, I’ve always had issues with Firefox running slow on my PC. When I run IE 7 on my PC, it opens right away, and it responds immediately. Also, it usually takes less time for a Web page to load within the browser. However, that is supposed to change with Firefox 2.0.
Third, I really like the clean interface. In fact, it looks a little more exciting, and I like the attempt to make it a little more minimalistic. The file menu disappears, even though you can make it return, but most of the commonly used buttons appear on the toolbar. Even the streamlined look of the tabs makes it look more attractive.
I really like the new look of IE 7. However, I would like to spend more time checking out Firefox 2.0, which was released today. In the meantime, I will continue using both and seeing which one better meets my needs.