Mozilla building on Firefox's dominant share in Indonesia

The organization is drumming up support from volunteers for higher localization of its browser

Mozilla is building an army of volunteers in Indonesia to help customize Firefox and recommend add-ons, as the U.S.-based non-profit organization seeks to retain its massive share of the browser market in the country.

Community groups in eight cities and drawing about 1,000 tech-savvy volunteers, with more expected, are meeting this month to brainstorm ways Firefox can be further localized, said Gen Kanai, Mozilla’s contributor engagement director for Asia.

They will do some of the work themselves in line with Mozilla’s tradition of using inputs from its users, Kanai said.

Mozilla wants that input so it can retain the high market share that Firefox already has in the country. Web statistics company, StatCounter, puts the share at 75 to 80 percent, the browser's highest in Asia. The worldwide share of Firefox, which competes with Internet Explorer and Google Chrome, is just over 30 percent.

Outreach matters because technology spreads fast by word of mouth in Indonesia, a possible cause of Firefox's market share, Kanai said. Technology favorites can also lose ground very fast in the country, as was seen in the mobile phone market, he added.

Mozilla does not fully understand why Firefox has caught on in Indonesia, Kanai said. But analysts and users say local Web developers benefit from Firefox's do-it-yourself plug-ins and extensions, which other browsers may not offer except for fees that not everyone in the developing nation of 238 million can afford.

"It's because people can design it however they want, however they need to," said Yofie Setiawan, a web designer and member of a community group in the capital Jakarta. "Then they will tell their friends, who (will) use it also."

Word of mouth as well as hands-on design options may explain why so many Indonesians use Firefox, said Ray Valdes, an analyst with market research firm Gartner.

"Often the reason (for popularity) is not technical but social," Valdes said. "The other possibility is that the ecosystem is propagating it."

Although nothing will be decided until the community group meetings, the 13-year-old Mozilla may try to solidify its position in Indonesia by encouraging new browser add-ons, such as toolbars, expressly for Indonesian websites and web services.

It is also considering new localized versions of Firefox in languages such as Sundanese, which is used by some 30 million people in the western part of the Indonesia island of Java.

"More Indonesian Mozilla developers could lead to new localizations," Kanai said. "These would be developed by Mozilla community members in Indonesia."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags browsersinternetsoftwareapplicationsmozilla

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ralph Jennings

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?