Firefox Quantum arrived yesterday, touting improved speed and lower RAM usage when compared to Chrome. Despite the competition between Mozilla and Google, it seems that another thing Firefox Quantum boasts is Google’s search engine by default.
For anyone that has been using Firefox since 2014, this is surprising as Mozilla was contracted to use different search engines by default depending on the territory the user is in. While every user has the option to switch to any browser they’d like within the settings, the main default was Yahoo Search. That was, until now, where many territories are seeing the switch back to Google.
“We exercised our contractual right to terminate our agreement with Yahoo based on a number of factors including doing what’s best for our brand, our effort to provide quality web search, and the broader content experience for our users,” said Denelle Dixon, Mozilla’s chief business and legal officer.
“We believe there are opportunities to work with Oath and Verizon outside of search.
“As part of our focus on user experience and performance in Firefox Quantum, Google will also become our new default search provider in the United States, Canada, Hong Kong and Taiwan. With over 60 search providers pre-installed as defaults or secondary options across more than 90 language versions, Firefox has more choice in search providers than any other browser.”
The same can be confirmed here, in Britain, with all my searched for the past day having been conducted through Google’s search engine without tinkering with the settings.
The decision to switch is likely over Mozilla protecting its best attempt at regaining popularity to compete with Google Chrome, the most used browser by a clear margin. Yahoo has been subject to a lot of controversy regarding hacks since 2013, most coming to a head throughout this year. Google seems like a bit more of a stable choice as the company moves forward, even if it is a direct competitor.
KitGuru Says: It might be a surprising decision but this is likely to ensure Firefox 57, better known as Quantum, has the best launch it possibly can. I’ve been using the new browser for the past day and must say it is much snappier than I imagined and has a pretty easy way of converting all of your stuff. Have you tried out Firefox Quantum yet?