Mozilla and Google Concerned About Windows RT Not Supporting Chrome and Firefox

Posted May 10, 2012

Windows RT (RT is for runtime) will be a version of the Windows operating system for ARM device like tablet computers with a touch screen interface will only run software available through the Windows Store or included in Windows RT. Google and Mozilla are not happy with this because they believe that they will be locked out. Mozilla said that Microsoft is preventing them from bringing a competitive version of Firefox to Windows RT. Other browsers will not get the same access to the same operating system abilities that IE10 gets. Google has also given their opinion on the issue in the statement below:

We share the concerns Mozilla has raised regarding the Windows 8 environment restricting user choice and innovation. We’ve always welcomed innovation in the browser space across all platforms and strongly believe that having great competitors makes us all work harder. In the end, consumers and developers benefit the most from robust competition.

According to Mozilla spokesman Asa Dotzler:

First, Microsoft has a browser that runs in Classic mode on Windows ARM. They are not allowing us that same access to run our browser on Classic. Second, Microsoft has a browser that runs in Metro mode on Windows ARM that has access to rich APIs that they are denying to third-party Metro browsers on Windows ARM. So, we are denied the ability to deliver any browser on Classic, and we are denied the ability to build a competitive browser on Metro.

Google and Apple have both allowed other browsers on Android and iOS. Firefox and Opera Mobile are among the browsers available for Android. Opera Mini is on iOS devices, but they do not have their own browser engine so it uses Opera’s servers to render websites.