REUTERS/Stephen LamGoogle is trying to worm its way into the hearts of Microsoft's most important customers, enterprise customers and schools. It just revamped its Chrome browser to make it more appealing to the IT departments of these two groups of users.
The hope is that IT departments will now choose Chrome as the default browser, rather than Internet Explorer.
That's a good strategy for Google because naturally, the default search engine for Chrome is Google while it's Bing for IE.
Today, Google introduced two new features to Chrome to make IT departments love it, explains the Official Google blog.
One new feature fixes a big problem for many enterprise customers: some of their older applications simply work better in Internet Explorer, particularly older versions of IE.
Despite losing share, IE is still the most popular browser, according to Net MarketShare. This is caused, in part, because some enterprise app companies tweaked their apps to work best with IE.
So Chrome introduced a new extension for IT administrators that lets another browser launch for specific Web apps even when Chrome is the default browser.
In other words, just because you need IE for some legacy app, doesn't mean you have to use it for everything, to Google's way of thinking.
It also launched a new feature for its Google Apps for Business and Education customers, that lets them customize Chrome in about 100 ways and load it up with "a curated app web store," when employees sign-in to Chrome with their work account.
It's Google's answer to the kind of control that Microsoft has given to IT departments for years with Internet Explorer.
If Google can get IT departments to make Chrome the default browser, it could see itself unseat IE as the most popular browser. Today, Chrome is No. 3. IE is No. 1 with 56 percent of the desktop market, Firefox has 20% and Chrome has 17 %, Net MarketShare reports.
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