AOL to discontinue Netscape web browser

Firefox, Thunderbird, SeaMonkey, Camino, Mozilla, Netscape 6/7/8/9, and all Gecko-based browsers discussion and support forum. (MozInfo701, Netscape Browser Archive)

Postby Somedude » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 2:23 pm

Can't say I didn't see this coming. AOL's been destroying Netscape ever since...6, was it? came out. I'm actually suprised the browser survived this long.

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Postby Fulvio » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 3:18 pm

For those who don't know, AOL purchased Netscape, with the intention to fight Microsoft. In fact, they had a series of AOL Gecko builds, patterned after Netscape/Mozilla. The fact that users were so hooked on the Microsoft scheme, and the ineptness of the leaders of the project doomed an interesting idea. So, AOL sued Microsoft, and got a settlement. Part of it was a requirement that AOL use the Microsoft/IE engine. Netscape became dispensable. The only reason why AOL made a few attempts with Netscape was to try to delay the inevitable.
One can say that AOL destroyed Netscape, but what is AOL now? Only a fool will pay to get AOL, when there are so many excellent broadband ISPs.
Netscape has been nothing but a name to AOL. But some people are still attached to that name.
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Postby Ramona » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 5:44 pm

Fulvio wrote: Netscape has been nothing but a name to AOL. But some people are still attached to that name.


I couldn't agree more, Fulvio. The name is the attachment, and users don't seem to either know, or to remember, that the Netscape they love was sold to AOL!
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Postby Antony » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 6:21 pm

Thank you Jay for providing additional clarification.
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Postby Cyberfox » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 6:59 pm

Isn't Netscape 9 a Mozilla product and not an AOL product? I used Firefox almost from the browser's beginning, then switched to SM(the stand alone browser, not the suite) and have been using Netscape 9 and really love it. I guess I'll just go back to Firefox since 3.0 is soon to be released. It's a shame, though, I really like Netscape. I used Opera briefly, but I keep coming back to Mozilla products.
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Postby James » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 7:00 pm

The sad history of Netscape's demise is well documented. I doubt many folks here are unfamiliar with it. Netscape dropped the ball years ago through poor business management and by the juggernaut Microsoft. Whether they could have prolonged their life by remaining free of AOL's grasp or not is highly questionable. The handwriting, as it were, was on the wall and Netscape's days were numbered once Microsoft set it in its sights. It seems to me that Asa put it rather nicely: good riddance. It should never have been revived and I should never have listened to Jay in making it my default. I was skeptical then that it could live up to all that he was predicting and it would appear my doubts were legitimate. But in the long run... so what? It was long since dead and any nostalgia for it as a viable browser is of little consequence. By today's standards it's ancient history.

The question now is: will Firefox and Thunderbird survive? Some have wondered whether Thunderbird will continue and frankly, I have my doubts. And if it is not picked up and kept abreast of security issues then it is essentially worthless to me. For the time being, it remains my default e-mail client. But I'm not putting all my eggs in one basket and that is why I'm beginning to export some of my mail, settings and address book over to Windows Live Mail. When and if its demise should come about, I do not want to be caught with my pants down.
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Postby Antony » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 10:58 pm

I take this also mean that Netscape Messenger 9 project will be cancelled even before it is released.
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Postby Don_HH2K » Sat 29 Dec, 2007 11:11 pm

Antony wrote:I take this also mean that Netscape Messenger 9 project will be cancelled even before it is released.


Just watch; ten years from now this thing will be as elusive as the Netscape 5 alpha. :lol:
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Postby Edward » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 11:14 am

Antony wrote:I take this also mean that Netscape Messenger 9 project will be cancelled even before it is released.


I would agree. :(
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netscape

Postby vipergg » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 11:37 am

Its too bad I kind of like 9.X . Also like Messenger and had been using that as my sole email client . :(
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Postby iJohnE » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 3:02 pm

I personally hated AOL, I found their services to be over-priced and un-reliable. That's why I said to my parents, I'll pay for it if you get broadband and I've had it ever since.
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Postby Fulvio » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 4:04 pm

To Cyberfox:
Isn't Netscape 9 a Mozilla product and not an AOL product?
.
Netscape9, properly named Navigator9 is a standalone browser developed by a small group of Netscape people at AOL. Navig.9 is based, closely on the equivalent Firefox, and, has never been a Mozilla product.

As for AOL, I feel bad for a company with continuous record of messing things up. I, thorougly, disliked their method of doing business, but I never found anything hateful with them.
I had subscribed to AOL dialup, and, no sooner Cox made Cable available, I stopped paying AOL exorbitant fees. (although, honestly, I continued paying for AOL, bringing my own connection. But after they increased the monthly fee to $14.95/mo, I was gone).
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Postby Ramona » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 4:25 pm

Check out these two articles for details of the buyout of Netscape by AOL:

AOL To Buy Netscape?
Deal Is Done: AOL Buys Netscape
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Postby Ramona » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 4:43 pm

From what I've read on David Ascher's Blog regarding the future of Thunderbird, and from other comments on MozillaZine, I believe the future of Thunderbird is solid. The general feeling on MozillaZine, is that Mozilla hasn't discontinued Thunderbird, but have spun off a new corporation for it, currently named MailCo.

To clarify, David Ascher heads the new company and is recruiting staff, and all the other details that accompany setting up a new organization. As for Firefox, that is the thrust of Mozilla.org, and should continue to gain in popularity!

MHO... :wink:
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Postby iJohnE » Sun 30 Dec, 2007 4:59 pm

I personally think Firefox and Thunderbird are set for now. Netscape may be bought out by a separate company, but for now it is gone.

If I knew how to build a browser I would continue Netscape, but I haven't yet acquired those skills.
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Last edited by iJohnE on Sun 30 Dec, 2007 7:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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