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Netscape Presses Ahead with Navigator 7.0

AOL-Time Warner subsidiary Netscape Communications put out a preview release of Navigator 7.0, a version of the browser that includes tabbed browsing and built-in radio.

The major new feature of the Preview Release 1 of Netscape Navigator 7.0 is tabbed browsing, which permits users to keep several different sites open at once through tabs on a single browser window. The feature is largely based on the work of the open-source Mozilla project.

A new radio feature is called Radio@Netscape and includes 150 preset stations.

Netscape, the onetime kingpin of the Web browsers, is struggling to make up a large market share lead enjoyed by Microsoft's Internet Explorer.

A March report from WebSideStory found that Netscape's market share dropped from about 12 percent to 7 percent in the time since Internet Explorer 6.0 launched. IE 6 had 30.5 percent market share, and IE version 5 had more market share than IE 6, according to WebSideStory.

However, Netscape's position would be shored up substantially if AOL carries through on reported plans to move away from IE and onto Navigator as its default browser.

The four-year-old antitrust trial stems largely from Microsoft's tactics in undercutting Navigator's market share. Netscape recently filed a lawsuit against Microsoft seeking damages for anti-competitive behavior.

Netscape Navigator 7.0 PR1 is available for download at http://channels.netscape.com/ns/browsers/7/download.jsp.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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