Google shares Mozilla's stance on Windows RT browser restriction

Google has released a statement agreeing with Mozilla's frustration regarding browsers on Windows RT. The company, which develops the Chrome browser, believes that Microsoft is harming browser innovation by not allowing users to choose their own browser.

We share the concerns Mozilla has raised regarding the Windows 8 environment restricting user choice and innovation. We've always welcomed innovation in the browser space across all platforms and strongly believe that having great competitors makes us all work harder. In the end, consumers and developers benefit the most from robust competition.

The company provided the statement to CNET and has given no further comments on the issue.

Yesterday, Firefox developer Mozilla revealed in a blog post that Microsoft will not allow third-party companies to provide browsers to consumers for the desktop via the Windows Store in Windows RT. Because x86 applications are not compatible with Windows RT, the ARM-powered version of Windows 8, users will also not be able to download other browsers through Internet Explorer in Windows RT. 

Developers will still be able to release Metro-based browsers for the new interface in Windows RT, but these browsers won't have access to the same advanced APIs that Microsoft uses for Internet Explorer in the operating system, according to Mozilla. The company still plans on releasing a Metro browser on Windows 8, as the next x86 version of Windows does not share the limitations of its ARM-powered counterpart.

Besides Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer (and any Windows-required application, such as Windows Explorer), no applications, besides Java and .NET applications, will be available on the desktop in Windows RT until they are recompiled for the ARM-processor.

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