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Update: Crucial Firefox-Google deal in doubt


By Nicole Kobie

Posted on 5 Dec 2011 at 10:43

Mozilla and Google are still negotiating a lucrative search deal that expired last month, which could leave the Firefox firm without the bulk of its revenue.

The open-source developer has had a deal with Google for five years, which saw the web giant pay for its search tool to have a prominent position in the Firefox browser.

The deal provided Mozilla with 85% of its royalty revenue over the past two years, which in turn makes up the vast majority of its total turnover.

The most recent three-year deal expired in November, according to ZDNet, and it's not clear whether it has or will be renewed. “We believe that search providers will remain a solid generator of revenue for Mozilla for the foreseeable future," a spokesman told ZDNet.

However, a spokesperson suggested to PC Pro that the deal with Google was still on. "We currently have partnerships with a number of search providers that differ by market, including major search partners including Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex, Amazon, eBay and others," the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson has since added that the two firms are in "active negotiations".

"Our search relationship with Google remains positive for both of us. We are in active negotiations and have nothing further to announce at this time," Mozilla said. "We have every confidence that search partnerships will continue to be a strong and growing generator of revenue for the foreseeable future."

Google has yet to return request for comment.

Firefox's share of the browser market has been slowly slipping, with Google's Chrome overtaking it to grab second place globally, according to StatCounter. Google released the Chrome browser days after signing its last search deal with Mozilla in 2008.

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User comments


...that it'll be Microsoft's Bing that rescues Firefox... by ensuring Google keeps the deal going to prevent it's main competitor from gaining an advantage.

By Mark_Thompson on 5 Dec 2011

history repeating..

Here we go again. This makes me want to use Chrome even less than I did already. I wonder if google predicted that reaction, or if they've bothered to look back at the history of large computer companies who became too big and/ or greedy for market share?

By stefani on 8 Dec 2011

Give it time

I think it suits Google to have a strongish Mozilla, so as to avoid anti-competition suits that so plagued Microsoft. I think we will see the deal extended soon.

By timothynt on 8 Dec 2011

Firefox 8 defaults to Yahoo search

My recently installed Firefox 8.0 defaults to Yahoo search. It's a bit of a nuisance, but nothing that can't be overcome.

By ianbyrne on 8 Dec 2011

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