IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Head to head: Firefox vs Internet Explorer

In our latest head to head, we weigh up the web's most popular browsers: Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and Mozilla’s Firefox.

But there are also plenty of JavaScript-based applications out there notable examples being Google's Calendar and Docs services. And whenever you visit one of these sites, Firefox will give you a much slicker experience than IE8.

Javascript

Firefox's fast JavaScript support makes web applications such as Google Docs a pleasure to use.

Winner: Firefox

Overall

There's no doubt which browser is the winner: the points stack up decisively on Firefox's side. But it's not as crushing a victory as it may appear.

Most Firefox users don't rely on plug-ins, and if you have Windows Update set to download patches automatically you'll get a comparable level of security from IE8. In many cases, switching from Microsoft's browser to Firefox won't visibly affect your online experience at all.

What differences there are between the browsers may simply reflect their different design strategies, with Firefox's open source coding teams having more freedom to innovate and experiment than Microsoft's more rigid organisation. While several of IE's features follow in Firefox's footsteps, that's not necessarily a bad thing: with a few exceptions, it means the technology has been tried and tested before landing on your desktop. Yes, past versions of Internet Explorer had their faults, but for everyday surfing IE8 is a perfectly respectable choice.

All the same, if you want the latest features and the fastest browser, it's Firefox all the way.

Winner: Firefox

Verdict

Internet Explorer 8 is a mature application offering a good range of comforts and conveniences. But Firefox has the edge thanks to its slicker design, better performance and huge library of plug-ins.

Featured Resources

Big data for finance

How to leverage big data analytics and AI in the finance sector

Free Download

Ten critical factors for cloud analytics success

Cloud-native, intelligent, and automated data management strategies to accelerate time to value and ROI

Free Download

Remove barriers and reconnect with your customers

The $260 billion dollar friction problem businesses don't know they have

Free Download

The future of work is already here. Now’s the time to secure it.

Robust security to protect and enable your business

Free Download

Recommended

Mozilla patches high-severity security flaws in new ‘speedy’ Firefox release
vulnerability

Mozilla patches high-severity security flaws in new ‘speedy’ Firefox release

23 Sep 2022
Chrome vs Firefox vs Microsoft Edge
web browser

Chrome vs Firefox vs Microsoft Edge

19 Jul 2022
Mozilla adds paid tier, new features to developer network platform
web development

Mozilla adds paid tier, new features to developer network platform

25 Mar 2022
Firefox 95 boosts protection against zero-day attacks
web browser

Firefox 95 boosts protection against zero-day attacks

7 Dec 2021

Most Popular

How to secure your hybrid workforce
Advertisement Feature

How to secure your hybrid workforce

23 Sep 2022
The human brain is far more complex than AI researchers imagine
artificial intelligence (AI)

The human brain is far more complex than AI researchers imagine

17 Sep 2022
Why collaboration is key to digital transformation
Sponsored

Why collaboration is key to digital transformation

13 Sep 2022