A New Browser Gives Surfers a Choice

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For all the ink spilled and legal hours billed over the competition between Microsoft and Netscape, there really isn't a lot of competition in the browser market. A recent study showed that among people who surf the Web at work, 41 percent use some kind of Netscape browser, 51 percent use Internet Explorer, and exactly 0 percent use anything else. That's why it's refreshing when alternative browsers come along and inject a little consumer choice into the marketplace, and that's exactly what iCab is trying to do.

ICab is the product of a tiny software company based in Braunschweig, Germany, far, far from Silicon Valley. It's currently available only for the Macintosh, but if you're a Mac user, you'll find that it performs some small miracles. First of all, it takes up only a little over two megabytes on your hard drive, compared to a minimum of nine megabytes for Internet Explorer, and it requires a mere four megabytes of RAM. Once you start using it, you'll notice it's plenty fast -- noticeably faster than IE, in some cases -- and it's got a funky look to it: Instead of a monolithic corporate logo in the upper right-hand corner, it's got a yellow cartoon taxi. MORE >>