The Return of the Browser Wars

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Two browser-related news stories emerged this week which might just signal the return of the browser wars. 

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Google is beginning a roll out of a new update to its Chrome Browser that the company promises will speed up load times. Using a new data compression algorithm called Brotli, page sizes can be reduced by 26 percent more than Chrome's previous compression tool. 

“At Google, we think that internet users’ time is valuable, and that they shouldn’t have to wait long for a webpage to load,” Google revealed in a September blog post, when it first announced Brotli. “Because fast is better than slow.”

Google (Alphabet), of course, isn't the only technology company concerned with speed of the browser and the quality of the user experience, there are others including Brave, a browser launched this week  that promises to increase page load times dramatically as well by stripping out ads and replacing them with their own (giving publishers a piece of the action as well - 15% of revenues go to Brave, with publishers getting around 55% or more and ad suppliers receiving 15%.).   

The new Brave browser is the work of Brendan Eich, the former CEO and co-founder of Mozilla and creator of JavaScript. Brave Software suggested that by removing/blocking underlying processes on online advertising (such as initial signaling/analytics scripts that trigger programmatic advertising,impression tracking and ad-click confirmations), web pages can load up to 60% faster with 20% of that increase resulting purely from removing data trackers.

Brave will ultimately insert new ads (through their own brand and agency relationships) based on its own tracking of users' browsing data, targeting those ads based on browser-side intent signals instead of a persistent user ID or highly re-identifiable cookie. 

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