Is the Netscape Browser Being Reborn or Just Stabilized?

Written off for dead about a year ago, the forefather of Web browsers, Netscape Navigator, is being resuscitated in the coming months with an updated version. But whether it will mark a revival of the browser, or simply some life support, remains to be seen. America Online Inc., which owns Netscape Communications Corp., is preparing a summer release of Netscape Navigator 7.2, an AOL spokeswoman confirmed with eWEEK.com.

It will be the first update to the browser since AOL spun off its Mozilla open-source development group last July, weeks after releasing its last Netscape Navigator, Version 7.1. As has been the case since Netscape Navigator 6.0, the browser will be based on the latest version of the Mozilla browser suite, AOL spokeswoman Anne Bentley said.

The now standalone Mozilla Foundation plans to release Version 1.7 of its namesake browser suite later this month, which sources say could allow AOL to issue an updated Netscape Navigator as early as June. It is unclear whether AOL is planning to unveil significant new browser features as part of the release. Bentley declined to discuss any new features or explain AOL's overall strategy for Netscape, which it bought in 1998.

News source: eWeek

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