But one could step back and see the same page in a metaphoric way:

Netscape is dead. And Netscape would never be able to make it back into the market. Don't get me wrong! I've been using Netscape since 6.1 as my default browser and e-mail, then Mozilla Seamonkey. I love these products. But that's not enough to win on the market. Netscape was probably killed by the utter lack of readiness of Netscape 6.0. Mozilla.org, with brand new marketing, pushing Firefox as a brand new product that does not require the average user to switch to a new e-mail client, is winning on the market.

IE is moribund. Microsoft does not care to update it. Why would they? They promoted IE to kill Netscape because it threatened their platform. Now that Netscape is dead, the challenge is somewhere else, namely Open Source Software (OpenOffice.org, Linux), among other things (XBox, DRM, Cell phones...) So Microsoft is into business, and has not interest in investing some money into a free product (IE) that will never pay back. So Microsoft is trying to sell it, bundled with various services such as online photos, Encarta information, and a Web calendar. At least, they hope to make money with this bundle, by selling this for 80 Euros a year.

This situation could last for quite some time, with Firefox gaining market share for a market segment not interesting to Microsoft. This does not mean that the browser market is uninteresting. With new features (tabbed browsing, integrated Google search, pop-up blocking...), impressive speed and awesome innovation, the market is moving. But to Microsoft, this is not interesting, as there is no significant money to be made.

For the consumer, having a modern browser is a must, and with Firefox, it's easier than ever to get one : 15 minutes over a modem connection, less than 2 minutes on DSL. But the consumer may not see why having Firefox is really important. It's about choice. Choice between IE's obsolete technology or a cool and free browser. Choice of search engines to find the information (s)he's looking for. Choice of platform (from 98 to XP to Linux, Mac OSX and others). Choice is freedom. And freedom has no price. You can get all that with a few minutes spent downloading Firefox. This may just explain the success behind Firefox.