Windows browser ballot screen rolls out

Microsoft's browser ballot screen, the EU-mandated move which offers users the option to replace Internet Explorer on their Windows installation, has begun to roll out to computers across the world that have Internet Explorer set as the default browser.

The instruction from Europe follows a long-running campaign from Mozilla to reduce Microsoft's dominance on the browser market. It's finally borne fruit, though since launching the campaign Mozilla has managed rather successfully to erode Internet Explorer's marketshare with its rather popular Firefox browser.

Soon, however, Windows users who are still running Internet Explorer in 30 European countries will be offered the choice between twelve different browsers - Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Opera, Firefox, GreenBrowser, Maxthon, K-Meleon, Flock, Avant Browser, Sleipnir, and SlimBrowser.

The first five will be presented in a random order, and then the other seven are offered by scrolling to the right in the box. You almost certainly won't have heard of some of the ones lower down in the list - in most cases they represent tiny specialist marketshares, albeit ones that will no doubt grow as a result of the change.

It'll be very interesting to see what effect the ballot screen will have on the different browsers' marketshare. Expect a flurry of stats to emerge in a month or so's time. Will users try something different, given the option, or just stick with what they know?



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