From a Walt Mossberg interview with Microsoft’s IE lead; check the full interview for a timely privacy reality check. My $.02: we’ll know Microsoft is serious about browser privacy if it includes a persistent in-private/anti-tracking browsing mode in IE9 – unlike the wimp-out in IE8, which was a per-session setting, and thus unlikely to be widely used; double bonus good-will points if the anti-tracking mode is the default in IE9
WALT: Okay, that was a nice ad. But please talk about reports that you’ve been eclipsed in Europe by Firefox.
DEAN: Yes, we used to have 90 percent market share back in the ’90s. But now we look at how many people choose to use our most recent versions. “We are delighted that IE 6 market share is going down. We are delighted that IE 7 market share is going down.”
DEAN: And bear in mind how much the Internet is growing. “There are a lot of different factors. It’s a very complex situation.”
DEAN: Paying Windows customers want a great experience that includes privacy, including through their browser. But another way to view people who use browsers is that they’re objects to be boxed and sold. We don’t believe that. We believe Windows customers should have a great experience with their browser.
WALT: As opposed to?
DEAN: Well, Chrome, for instance, is funded by advertising.
WALT: So is The Wall Street Journal.