Google Testing Firefox Usability - Working on GBrowser?


Former Firefox developer Ben Goodger, who is now a Google employee, has a post on the Mozilla developer blog. It looks like Google was testing usability on tabbed browsing.

Here at Google, we did some usability studies on the tabbed browsing feature. Our usability analyst designed a study to see how well people responded to tabs and how easily they were able to switch between them and close them.

Now of course this begs the question, are they working on the Google Browser?

I'm putting on my wide brimmed tin-foil hat, but a google browser with the toolbar built in, and lots of other plugins for gmail, adsense, adwords, blogger, google voip, even some online version of open office would look pretty darn impressive next to anything else even on the drawing board over in Redmond.


I still think this makes

I still think this makes sense: put the portal in the browser just like you are talking about. I think Google will do it. They won't rely on it as the only means to access the Google portal but it will be taking the toolbar to the next level.

Don't forget that Mike

Don't forget that Mike Pinkerton is now a Google employee now also. He started the Camino project, which is a (Mac-only) browser that fuses the Gecko engine with a Cocoa frontend. Before he worked at Google he was responsible for various projects at AOL.

Testing Tabs

Perhaps those tabs won't be invisible after all:

(Image links to the article at SearchEngineWatch)

I've usability tested tabs myself, quite extensively. It's interesting to read that article, as I've tested it on web pages, not applications. People dig tabs. But they're not going to use them unless it's intuitive, easy and convenient. Oh, and it must make sense too.

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