Google is now the most used web browser in the world.
Ever since the launch of Microsoft's Internet Explorer 6 (IE6), it became the most used operating windows system. After a couple of years, web developers really started to hate it because of its outdated features. YouTube was acquired by Google in 2006 and with a team of its engineers planned to terminate the IE6. The plot to destroy IE6 was carried out without the knowledge of YouTube’s parent company, Google, says Chris Zacharias who worked for the company from 2007 to 2010.
Around a decade ago, more than 25 per cent of internet users were still surfing the web using IE6 even though there were more modern web browsers like Firefox, Google Chrome and even IE 8.
The plot to kill Internet Explorer
Zacharias, in a blog post, revealed the plan they came up with to kill IE6 nearly 10 years ago when IE6 users represented almost 18 per cent of the entire YouTube traffic. The engineers created a special set of permissions called 'OldTuber', so they could bypass Google's code enforcement policies and make changes directly to the codebase of YouTube with limited code reviews.
YouTube displayed a banner on IE6 which included the links to download other browsing windows and said,
"We will be phasing out support for your browser soon. Please upgrade to one of these more modern browsers."
Source: The Verge
Google, from a long time, has been accused of using manipulative practices to rise above all its rivals and became the most popular one. Zacharias' revelation of the plot made it clear.
The incident of destroying IE6 had led to a downfall of Microsoft's shares. The main reason the developers took this step, was because they were tired of developing Explorer's UI every week or two.
Zacharias also said that two Google lawyers wanted to know why YouTube had the banner in place. They also immediately demanded to remove the banner.
"Within one month, our YouTube IE6 user base was cut in half and over 10 per cent of global IE6 traffic had dropped off while all other browsers increased in corresponding amounts"
However, this is not the first time the world's greatest search engine has been accused of following such false practice. Earlier, an ex-Mozilla employee accused Google of taking over Mozilla through its amateur tactics.
It took five years for Microsoft after IE6 to finally get around to releasing Internet Explorer 7. Internet Explorer has developed and now has many updated versions but yet it is unable to beat Google.