Not only do I get this question often, I also get the question, “What is a Browser?” A browser [or Web-Browser] is the program that lets you view web pages, or as some call it, “The Internet.” The Internet is MUCH MORE than just web pages, but this and E-mail are the two most prolific uses. I mean, Facebook is just a popular web-site [and now a phone app.]
I don’t think this is a stupid question for this reason; software companies are more interested in making their products easier to use and be recognized, than trying to describe their purpose and function. [This is a good thing for users that are familiar with that type of software.]
The problem occurs during remote troubleshooting when I need to lead a customer to the web. Many users are happy with one of the main browsers but not usually all of them. I will always install a secondary browser such as Mozilla Firefox just so the user has a, “spare in the trunk.” Asking a user to, “open their browser,” often requires a definition for the same reason that we ask people for a “Kleenex” as opposed to a facial-tissue. Everyone knows what the blue “e” does, but not what it’s called.
So what is the best browser? Some may say it come down to preference, but for the last three years, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in conjunction with US-C.E.R.T. has said that Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome are the safest browsers with Firefox often beating out its younger sibling from Google by only a small margin. Why are these young upstarts more secure than the venerable Explorer from Microsoft? There are many reasons, most of which are quite technical, but in the end, the competition between all of these companies is good for you, the End-User.