By Andrew Betts of FT Labs

Google has announced a major change to its Chrome browser this week. While it represents a divergence in a key part of Chrome previously shared with Apple’s Safari browser, the move should enable Google ultimately to up its pace of innovation.

So for those who might think that a ‘rendering engine’ is a piece of farm machinery, we offer the following overview of this development, which represents a substantial fork in the road in the development of the web. Read more

Firefox may have disqualified itself from the iPhone, but expect the browser to appear in its Firefox for Mobile version in the Android Market in the near future.

It’s not finished yet, but there are so many bogus versions of Firefox appearing in the Market that its creator Mozilla is considering pushing out the beta version, already available on its website. Read more

From March 1, the 100m-plus users of Windows-based PCs in Europe who have Internet Explorer set as their default web browser will be invited to choose whether they want to keep Microsoft’s browser or ditch it for a rival.

Continue reading our Business Life Personal Tech review of rival browsers

You’d think that Microsoft’s rivals would welcome the company’s announcement that it will ship Windows 7 in Europe without an internet browser.

After 15 years (that’s how long ago it was that the US first forced Microsoft into a consent decree promising not to “tie” other products illegally to Windows) the software company has finally agreed to untie the browser completely, at least in Europe. It feels like a watershed.

So are the makers of Firefox, Opera and other browsers dancing in the streets? Not a bit of it. Read more

Watch out Microsoft: Google is trying to up the pace in its attempt to turn the Web into a platform for applications that fully matches today’s computer operating systems.

That was the clear message today at the company’s annual developer conference in San Francisco, which attracted 4,000 people.

The focus of Google’s pitch: HTML5, the next version of the internet markup language, which should exploit more of the capabilities in browsers to produce richer applications and experiences. Among the things Google showed off today were 3D graphics running inside a browser, a way to parcel out computing resources more efficiently so that browsers can handle much heavier workloads, and tools to make browser-based apps continue to function even when offline. Read more

Google Chrome has had a strange start to life. The browser is undoubtedly fast, and given it’s very new, has a lot of good features packed into it.

But where are the users? As Google took Chrome out of beta today , it revealed that the browser has gained 10m active users in its first 100 days. That sounds like a lot – until you compare it to others. Firefox – a rival browser that is more firmly established as the main alternative to Internet Explorer – has around 20 per cent of the browser market, compared to Chrome which is yet to break 1 per cent. Read more