Google received some serious accusations at the start of the week. A former intern that worked with the Edge team claimed that Google broke YouTube so that Microsoft can have a huge disadvantage. The intern also added that “this is only one case”, leading us to believe that similar situations have existed in the past.
Chrome is a giant when it comes to browsers. In fact, Chrome (and Chromium) represent 80 percent of the market for desktop browsers. The only major rival remains Firefox, but even so, the browser only accounts for 9 percent. Therefore, it wouldn’t be surprising to find out that Google is trying to assert its dominance.
Denying the accusations
Google claims that these allegations are false. YouTube also explained what caused this problem. “YouTube does not add code designed to defeat optimizations in other browsers and works quickly to fix bugs when they’re discovered. We regularly engage with other browser vendors through standards bodies, the Web Platform Tests project, the open-source Chromium project and more to improve browser interoperability,” explained a YouTube spokesperson.
Not the first allegations
This is not the first time Microsoft is accused of such things. In the past, Firefox made similar accusations. Chris Peterson noted back in July that YouTube’s redesign relied on an API used only in Chrome. He suggested a Firefox extension to fix this and he posted a tweet detailing the situation:
YouTube page load is 5x slower in Firefox and Edge than in Chrome because YouTube’s Polymer redesign relies on the deprecated Shadow DOM v0 API only implemented in Chrome.
Even if Google did state the truth, we have to admit that it is worrisome that companies are able to do such things, whether they do it or not. Rivals can be erased from the market without having a chance to prove themselves.
Nora Reynolds is a major in biology and a minor in Biological Basis of Behavior, writing about science in general. She also likes to try new gadgets and sports about the AI new era.