How Google is building a browser monopoly


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Thanks to curiosity stream for sponsoring this video. I have a link for you to try out premium for free So hang out till the end of the video I’m primarily a Firefox user and I move between a Windows PC and a Mac both of which of course have their own web browser But in the last couple of weeks I actually have to download Chrome on three separate occasions because the three browsers that I have installed on My machines are apparently just not enough to run Google websites well anymore and sadly it is not just me The tech news is full of mysterious bugs and errors that pop up all the time and Google has purpose-built some sites like hangouts and Google Earth for example to only work in Chrome at least for a couple of years So in the 52nd episode of The Story Behind series Let’s talk about POW and why Google is trying to turn Chrome into a monopoly Real quick before we start if you want to see more in-depth analysis of tech companies Especially from a business perspective consider subscribing to tackle time Alright, I’ll start with my personal experiences. One of the random Google tools I use as a youtuber is the end screen editor, the tool to put these interactive little buttons at the end of my videos and about 2 months ago It stopped working out of nowhere in all three of my browsers. A month later when it still didn’t get fixed I tweeted at YouTube to ask what was going on and they had a simple solution for me I should just use a different browser. Well lucky for them I guess the one that worked was Chrome So I downloaded it, put up my end screen cards, and a few weeks later one day, she got fixed I just deleted Chrome again. No biggie. A week or two after that I had to hop on a call with my partner manager from YouTube and since she is a Google employee we of course used Google Hangouts in the browser for the call. Except not in MY browser of course, as Hangouts straight up doesn’t work in Firefox. Since it was on my macbook I decided to use Safari. Turns out you need to install a plug-in which I did and I got a random error I could have probably fixed this somehow but the call was in like two minutes So I just got Chrome and hopped on the call. At this point I was a little bit annoyed but whatever I deleted Chrome after the call and then got on with my life But then recently I tried to add subtitles to my latest video Like I always do and suddenly the subtitle editor doesn’t work in Firefox. Neither on my PC nor on my Mac I tweeted at YouTube again, but this time they didn’t reply to me and instead I only saw reports of other users confirming that they had the same issue as well So just like a well trained monkey I download Chrome and who would have thought it just works now if I were a normal human being this is probably the point where I was just switched to Chrome because obviously Chrome is the browser where everything just seems to work, right, but of course I’m not a normal human being so I got angry at Google instead and decided to make this video because my issues, as it turns out, they’re not some isolated little errors. Just a few weeks ago, Google temporarily blocked Google Meet, which is their enterprise video calling app, from working in the new Microsoft Edge and a few days later, they blocked the same browser from accessing the modern version of YouTube, instead reverting users to a really old version That’s extra weird because the new edge even uses Google’s own rendering edge in chromium So it should handle websites the exact same way as chrome itself and indeed when users Manually changed their user agent to pretend that they’re Chrome Both of these websites worked just fine And then there are tons of reports like this thread from a Firefox engineer that claims that Google suddenly used some outdated non-standard API on YouTube which is only supported by Chrome that all of a sudden made YouTube load 5 times slower on Firefox and edge than in Chrome or Like this thread from a previous VP at Mozilla claiming Google introduced Hundreds of Firefox-specific bugs and errors to Google Sites each time convincing many users to switch over to Chrome Instead and I could go on and list a bunch of other similar issues, but I think you get my point Google websites are just constantly riddled with strange bugs and just aren’t very well optimised on anything that isn’t Chrome and that’s not even talking about websites like hangouts or Google Earth that for years only worked in in chromium Like when was the last time Mozilla, Apple, or Microsoft Built a major service that only worked in their own browser and then kept it that way for years? On the Google Earth website they even used the Chrome logo as the logo for the web as if the web for consumers should just equal to Chrome and to anyone who’s been around in the nineties or in the early 2000s, this sort of behavior should seem strangely familiar because we’ve seen it before Microsoft back in the days used their dominance with Internet Explorer to strangle other competing web browsers like Netscape for example. Sure, Microsoft might have been way more Straightforward in their anti-competitive behavior, I actually explained all of that in my previous video that you can watch right here, But Google is achieving the same results Even if they use much more subtle tools. Instead of actually trying to break Compatibility standards across the web like Microsoft did all Google needs to do is a bit of malicious neglect Given how reliant many people including myself are on Google services It’s enough for those to work noticeably worse and competing browsers every now And then. That alone will slowly end up killing competing browsers just fine. It’s death by a thousand cuts and not even obvious to people Looking at it from the outside There is a rational, non-malicious explanation to any one of these issues on their own and tech websites Love to point them out. The new edge for example is still in preview So maybe Google just didn’t test for it. Hangouts is being phased out in exchange for Meet So maybe they didn’t want to bother making it work on other browsers anymore. The YouTube tools are only used by a few people So maybe they’re not all that important and so on. All of these can technically be explained in isolation But together they create a malicious anti-competitive pattern, a pattern where Google has Clearly decided that if something works in chrome, that’s good enough and if it breaks in another browser Who cares they can just fix it Once they get enough complaints. Until then users can just get Chrome. In my last video I explained why Microsoft suddenly stopped being anti-competitive because their new business model incentivized them to become a good citizen I believe that companies are ultimately driven by their business incentives And so that’s probably also what’s driving Google in this case we all know that over 80% of Google’s revenue comes from advertisements and chrome is Essential for letting them track you across the web and to make sure that you actually see the ads that they want to show you Nearly all competing browsers like Firefox Safari brave and even the new Microsoft edge have added built-in blocking for web trackers and ads, most of them turned on by default, and they’re Increasingly getting more and more aggressive about them seeing it as a point of differentiation Versus the dominant chrome in other words these browsers directly threaten Google’s ability to track users and to show them ads Google on the other hand has recently introduced their own default ad blocker on Chrome Except they only block Competing ads, not their own, and they’ve made changes to chrome that make it harder for third-party ad blockers to block trackers across the web By limiting things like how many blacklisted services they can have in their database and I think the Incentives are pretty clear to see. Now, if you care about the web enough to watch this video, I think you’ll really enjoy this fantastic documentary about the internet called 2-digits where fellow youtuber Derek from veritasium Talks to everyone from the early inventors of the Internet to Edward Snowden Explaining everything from how network switches work to how white hat hackers save you from the bad guys You can watch it for free on Curiosity Stream if you sign up with my link in the description and you’ll also get access to over 2,400 professional documentaries available on the site including Schultz from Stephen Hawking, David Attenborough, and Jane Goodall Curiosity’ stream was founded by the founder of the Discovery Channel and works on essentially every device you own, including smartphones computers and smart TVs And sign up if that sounds like fun to you and I’ll see you in the next video

100 Replies to “How Google is building a browser monopoly”

  1. Ashish Kedia says:

    While this is my personal opinion, I think this video carefully selects examples to make Google look bad. I doubt if anyone at Google in intentionally trying to make things run slower on FireFox. Today >60% of market share is claimed by Chrome. And only 5% belongs to firefox. On some level it makes sense to not support a few features on smaller browsers and instead support next-gen features on more popular browsers. It makes sense not to prioritize bugs filed for Mozilla user – not because someone wants to eliminate Mozilla using bad business practices but because the benefit would not justify the cost. Some (in fact most) of bugs you talk about are probably just plain negligence and as you said can be explained fairly well in isolation. But I think liking them all together to conclude that this could be some sort of malicious strategy by Google – is probably just manipulation on your part. Google is a big company and I am pretty sure, Hangouts, Meet, Earth and YouTube teams are pretty independent and segregated – these incidents are mistakes on Google's part – for sure. But it doesn't indicate any malicious intent IMO.

  2. Miroslav Daniel Roshal says:

    Why are sponsors everywhere?

  3. Lennon says:

    I hate google chrome

  4. M C says:

    u're overthinking this . . I just started using firefox last month to watch youtube on it cause it has better pluggins for it.

  5. Anindya Dey says:

    If it works on chrome it’s good enough…there was a time (and even now in some cases) in the enterprise space that if it works on ie it’s good enough..

    Yes it seems kind of anti competitive but did you check if all proprietary browser based products from proprietary browser companies works equally well on browsers other than their own ?

  6. Kaylie says:

    i use brave instead bc it's exactly like chrome but it blocks ads and trackers too

  7. nik maknojia says:

    So you are mad because google updates their own apps first to support their own new features first and why? Coz you don’t stick to Firefox imao 👍🏼 if I was owner of the company I would do the same why would I update someone else shit same time compared to my own. That’s business not monopoly and any other company would do the same unless if they aren’t making any profit of their methods. Look at Apple why do their watch doesn’t work well with android huh I mean I pay for it so I should be able to make it work just the way it works on iPhone right. You can’t expect any company to work the way you want. You pay for Apple hardware and you still can’t do shit about things you don’t like so how do you expect google who btw is giving you free apps to work the way you want. That’s not how it works.

  8. Jodel Jorda says:

    Using mint browser by xiaomi👏

  9. Kal_Jor_El says:

    Google is getting way too powerful and I am not ready for it to become a monopoly. That is why I have ditched every Google service for alternatives and believe me, I do NOT miss Google at all.
    For me the best browser is Opera. Extremely reliable and super fast with awesome Ad blocking.
    OneDrive for Cloud,
    Here Maps for Navigation,
    Apple notes for notes.
    Bing instead of Google. Image search is way better than Google here.
    iOS instead of Andriod.
    My only dependency is Gmail is it is my official account. I am just waiting for an alternative to arrive.
    I sincerely wish we get an alternative to YouTube as well.
    Other than that, life is pretty good without Google.

  10. Suraj Kumar says:

    Everyone : I want to become good human being…
    He : I am not a Normal Human being…😅😅

  11. Music Dogg says:

    For the record, firefox and Safari work fine on google sites like hangouts and other such services. I've never had issues on this front, so what's the problem?

  12. CStafford-14 says:

    Why don't we boycott google? We've got Firefox, Vimeo, MS Office (The online equivalent to google docs is more powerful… and free!) OneDrive (and the other plethora of online storage solutions), Skype/Discord, and MUCH more.

  13. Ben Cadet says:

    next time just sue them

  14. 「 a wholesxme pxtatodoes _ gxcha 」 says:

    firefox and chrome?

    im an intulectual so i use fricking Safari

  15. pure uploads says:

    Download samsung internet

  16. Stom says:

    youre man face have ruined in brain your idot


    I dont need crome. I use firefox. If i cant see it with that i dont need to see it. If Microsoft wants to get competitive they could get rid if the mandatory updates. I just removed windows on all my laptops. I got tired of the weekly updates. I dont need them

  18. funnybomb says:

    It all makes sense now as to why Elementor for wordpress wasnt working on Edge but magically did on chrome

  19. The Wicked Savage says:

    Crime is the best

  20. Nick TV says:

    Angry about Google but apple does similar things often

  21. Jogendra Singh says:

    Did you ever notice when you open link from YouTube Description it try to open with chrome even I don’t installed chrome on my iPad.

  22. sathya moorthy says:

    Microsoft edge chromium would break it

  23. Victor Reis says:

    Every time i need to use a internet service i ask myself if i have a good enough alternative to a google product and most of the time i have, so i refuse to use a google service if i have a good alternative.
    Basically i only use gmail and youtube, but even gmail is not my main email address, its just my "garbage email" to use on games and other unimportant stuff and i only use youtube for a handful of channels, but i use other broadcast services like, vimeo, dailymotion, liveleak and bitchute.
    Oh, and i use Firefox ans sometimes Iridium to browse the internet.

  24. Adrian says:

    Edge guy here!

  25. lukkash says:

    tell them to GET THE F*K OUT and start using browsers like Brave and Firefox with privacy add-ons
    and also search engines like
    1. DuckDuckGo
    2. StartPage (based on results from Google)
    3. Qwant (also with Maps)
    4. SearX

  26. Dalek 2150 says:

    I use to like Netscape Navigator, until it stopped being developed. Then switched to FireFox, stopped using FireFox when it couldn't display 3D files….
    So I been using Brave browser over 2 years now. It offers same abilities like Chrome….screw gulag.

  27. Shogo 昇剛 says:

    Microsoft is more open than Google these days.

  28. Omizuke says:

    I have, currently installed, Firefox, Waterfox, Vivaldi, Brave, Opera GX, and have a opera portable. And I will install as many browsers I need to access my websites when Google breaks them as long a Chrome is not one of them. And I was about to write the whole UA pretending its chrome magically works, and you mention it. So you can tell its not really the browser, is Google.

  29. D Quzmanovic says:

    Opera works perfectly…

  30. Yash Pal Goyal says:

    Everybody reply to this comment and shout

    G!OOGLE FK Ya!!
    O O

  31. anon amous says:

    I tried to find a different point of view because Google is biased. But I found other search engines to be Google powered. They might as well be Google. With Google owning all the media platforms it's hard to get around them to hear a different opinion. There is definitely a monopoly and they have way too much power over what is told and how it is told.

  32. Hannes productions says:

    Why firefox?

  33. GMan5090 says:

    Thank God I only use the internet for porn

  34. John Blessing says:

    I stopped using Chrome and now use Brave.

  35. J.A. R. says:

    I hate Google and I hate Chrome. Point 1 – certain websites I want to use detect I'm using Firefox and claim it requires Chrome. I use a User-Agent switcher plugin in Firefox that when turned on lies to the website to say it is Chrome and the websites work perfectly but I can not even get on unless the browser lies and says it is Chrome. Point 2. Google's search engine can be demonstrated to be highly biased. They will give results that conform to the way they want you to see the world and it also adds additional bias to your searches based on previous searches you have made.

  36. Issa Fram says:

    Just change your user agent header

  37. frank lethargic says:

    I would want to figure out what's going too with it. You aren't abnormal for wanting to resolve the issue.

  38. Peace Prevails says:

    Still using edge NOT the chromium one and also Tor. Haven't used chrome for months.

  39. Atomic Lizard says:

    Chrome is still best in my opinion

  40. Chris Namaste says:


  41. Deon Van der Westhuizen says:

    Google, just like Microshit, employs brilliant programmers just to tweak their systems to sabotage competitors. The only power we as users have, is too boycott these power companies. Even if it means going without the nice features. Unfortunately, as users gets dumber every day, this also gets more difficult every day.

  42. Übermensch says:

    Using Brave and boycotting Google wherever possible.

  43. Übermensch says:

    Google: Do no evil

  44. Obrad Velimirovic says:

    try brave browser

  45. U.Asfandiar Baker says:

    Your voice is disgusting despite of your content ….. your voice made me unsubscribe your channel ….. is really disgusting …

  46. gilkesisking says:

    Vivaldi, Firefox, Tor and Palemoon on Linux. If your services don't work on my browsers I don't use your services.

  47. KL Tah says:

    Well, at least Google didn't exclude this video from their algorithm recommending it sigh

  48. ZhengZL says:

    fuck google 🙂

  49. VoltageLP says:

    Who uses Firefox in 2019 and why?

  50. Fastnail says:

    Use Tor or Brave browsers.

  51. Sarath Chandra says:

    I too face such problems with Youtube and google hangouts during 2017. hen i stoped using those services altogether. Chrome sucks the CPU on my system.

  52. EndersBD says:

    "Google's browser monopoly "uploaded on youtube :/

  53. It Scheiss says:

    I can understand your indignation over these measures by Google with its Chrome browser but as history of various industries and technologies has proven, once a company becomes dominant and enjoys overwhelming market share, it will exert its market power to try and drive the competition out.

    Besides building a search tool which I find works better than others in terms of number of relevant results, Google has gone further to build an extensive suite of applications, including the Android smartphone OS, which have become a more or less complete, integrated ecosystem which makes it the first choice of most users, albeit most ordinary users and that all that Google needs to attract the massive share of online advertising revenue it earns, to the extent that it can now afford to demonetise creators of content deemed "inappropriate" by the advertisers who don't want their videos associated with such content.

    I mostly use Firefox for most of my browsing but keep the open source Chromium at hand for certain applications.

    Apple too, has created its own ecosystem of proprietary applications, most of which run on its proprietary hardware.

    In some countries such as the US and in the European Union, you can fall back on anti-monopoly legislation to force the likes of Google to open up but it will not be easy.

    It is the very nature of free market capitalism, with many competing choices, for free market to gravitate towards monopoly, passing through an oligopoly stage along the way, and that is what you see happening with Google and at Internet speed.

    Whilst Firefox is a great web browser, the non-profit Mozilla Foundation has not created as extensive a suite of applications to match and compete with Google, so we are at the mercy of Google's whims, and perhaps a non-profit organisation such as Mozilla does not have the finances to fund such extensive development in order to catch up with Google in the near future.

    So you can either fight Google through government regulation, and I have no issue with that, but if big government is an issue with you, then like-minded developers will have to work with the Mozilla Foundation to built an effective, competing ecosystem which beats Google at its game.

  54. erik masterchef says:

    i guess it's not all intentional since chrome enables lazy web design. a lot of things on my website with css 100% written by myself looked just fine on chrome, but it all shit itself on firefox. now that i switched to firefox and adapted my css it works on all browsers

  55. logan graham says:

    people complain about problems on firefox with google sites.
    i've only ever had 1 issue.
    youtubes chat was acting a bit weird once and that is pretty much it.
    I've been using firefox for 14 years and only ran into 1 issue 1 time.

  56. Robert M says:

    Try opening the problematic site or page in a incognito/private tab or window within the same browser. Even Chrome has random issues sometimes due to caches, plugins, etc.
    Just yesterday I had an issue on the UPS shipping site on chrome and opened it on incognito mode and it worked fine.

  57. Hamish S says:

    Good i started using duck duck go!

  58. David Augeri says:

    Chrome is the worst browser there is….gotta wonder how much they are paying this guy to talk them up

  59. Paramesh Subramoni says:

    You have to adapt to certain situations
    That's all I have to say

  60. Priyadarsini T P says:

    Interoperability should be the norm for everything. Lack of it just aids more antitrust violations.

  61. SHEFAT NOOR Tanzeem says:

    Brother nothing is free in this world!
    I actually support google policy cause they have to run a huge company

  62. Mikhail Onishchenko says:

    As a dev that sometimes has to do some web development(on a rather pathetic level) I can fully understand google's approach. If they are developing their own ecosystem, then making sure that their products work perfectly in other browsers is quite wasteful in resources. I personally fucking hate IE. Most of the banks use IE for 'security reasons' even though this piece of crap has tons of known vulnerabilities. And I have to go out of my way and spend quite a lot of time to work around something that Chrome or Firefox do on their own but IE just doesn't.
    How many of the bugs in other browsers are made on purpose is a subject of conspiracy theories.

  63. Ché Köhler says:

    Have you tried using Brave it runs on chromium

  64. Bay Work says:

    Google's motto (used to be): Don't be evil.

  65. Максим says:

    Well, they manage hangouts/youtube/etc, so whoever is able to create a better instruments is have all rights to use that leverage. Like if you're so principle and don't like the fact that google plays 'dirty' just quit using their products.

  66. Deputy Dodo says:

    Just use chrome
    Its better than all

  67. David Neorchik says:

    Using Google products works on Google product. Shocked epiphany

  68. Md Mehedi Hasan says:

    Google Ads not only support google but also publisher. And even this youtuber also use google adsense to monetize his channel to earn money. I think when we get something free we should support them by viewing their ads so that they can earn money and continue their business.

  69. Laser Space Ninja says:

    Google is the new Microsoft.

  70. Ban Y E E T os says:

    I don't care I'll just delete google

  71. zaa10i6t a3210 says:

    ad ad ad ad ad ad ad ad vai amerda com isso de ad

  72. vijay surendran says:

    Google is building shit. I see a future where Google will become the reason for its own demise.. Google downfall has begun.. Be sure of it

  73. kleenex tissues says:

    Shoutout to Netscape Navigator users

  74. FanonX Rogers says:

    Damn. I use chrome religiously but now that I see this I want to delete it ASAP.

  75. Joseph Stalin says:

    Fuk Google

  76. Chrystian Yepiz says:

    I hate it, I can not even watch a youtube video on Safari without issues, but there's no way I'll start using Chrome because of that, I rather stop using Youtube first

  77. sebastian Johansson says:

    the only google service i really use is youtube. firefox for life =p

  78. Troglodude says:

    whys this dude whisper at the end of sentences

  79. Gabriel Freitas says:

    I've used edge couple days ago, it works really well and smooth, I'm amazed!

  80. Mirror Me says:

    Google is soon dying, Microsoft is coming back

  81. Mattink Tattoo says:

    You know, as web developer I find this good. The trouble is that we have to many browsers to adapt and that's why we have many issues and errors on many platforms and websites. Sometime a system it's working fine on one browser and it's crushes on others and the developer need to spend more time and do more trade off's just to make it work for everyone. It's bad for the other browsers but it can be better for us.
    You can compare this to USB-C subject. Soon we'll use it for every device and it's way cooler! Instead using 3-4 different lighting cables and buy different converters now we can use type-C
    Anyway, to evolve in the industry sacrifices needs to be made.

  82. t h a n o i d says:

    Chrome is ass

  83. thumbtak says:

    Using a useragent switcher is a work around. Switch it to chrome.

  84. NovaStorm64 says:

    Well I'm glad Brave is like more trustworthy chrome.

  85. Artem Sever says:

    качайте браузер Амиго пацаны!! Все пашет!!

  86. FlyingGrandayy says:

    Is it a coincidence I got a browser ad. I think not

  87. coolmoon leon says:

    well, Google not working in China 😶

  88. Todd Miner says:

    Try Opera browser and its variants.

  89. ED DE says:

    I've only been using chtome since it came out. Why use other inferior browsers?

  90. Hanro50 says:

    You could try chromium…

  91. Ali Rezvani says:

    idk why we should blame them ; they own YT and want ppl to use their own browser . besides that chrome is more flexible and responsive (in my opinion ofc)

  92. Shihab Sharfuddin says:

    chrome has some issues it keeps crashing frequently.

  93. fuckfannyfiddlefart says:

    Corporation tries to create monopoly and state capitalism failed again.

  94. Baldeep Birak says:

    A bit like why YouTube blocked the app on Windows Phone so you had to visit YouTube using a browser on W10Phone

    Always have 2 browsers in case I come across suspicious behaviour like this over the years.

  95. shunjoss says:

    Better be late than never.
    Since the beginning chrome spread like malware infesting your system by being installed without your consent alongside adobe or shit like that.
    Well it is still a data mining malware but people use it. I don't know why.
    Don't think microsoft stopped to play dirty, they fake opensourceness because the company was to far behind to ever compete with linux on server side where all the money is made now.
    I can't wait android alternatives 🙂

  96. Benjamin Morrison says:

    I'm enjoying Brave

  97. Jebbidan says:

    first of all microsoft do OS monopoly and second GOOGLE DOES THE SAME SHIT AS MICROSOFT DO . like father like son

  98. Jason Aquino says:

    1:52 It says Edge but with IE icon. 🤔🤔🤔🤔

  99. ware zit says:

    now do a video about the Google EULA / TOS upon account creation which gives the US government unfettered access to user data without notifying the end-user – and the radical juxtaposition to a standard search warrant to physical search of private property …

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