Google will remain the default browser in Mozilla Firefox for the next three years - in a deal worth an estimated $300 million a year.

Google to pay almost $300m-a-year to remain Firefox default

Google is reported to have paid hundreds of millions to Mozilla for a three-year deal to remain the default search in Firefox.

GOOGLE IS REPORTED to have reached a three-year deal with software maker Mozilla to remain the default search engine in Firefox – with the deal reportedly worth almost $300 million a year.

The previous deal, whereby all new installations of Mozilla’s popular Firefox browser feature Google as their first-choice search engine, had expired at the of November.

The $300m-a-year figure – reported by Kara Swisher on AllThingsD – is a major bump on the value of the previous tie-up between Google and Mozilla; last year, Mozilla recorded $123 million in income, with Google contributing over 80 per cent of that.

The inflated figures for the next three years is likely as a result of competitive bidding from Microsoft’s Bing search engine.

The deal, though expensive, is a boost for Google – which, when Firefox is combined with its own Google Chrome browser, commands at least half of the default search engine market.

Though Microsoft Internet Explorer still accounts for around 40 per cent of the worlds’ browser share, many users – particularly corporate ones – still use older versions which do not contain Bing, meaning Google’s share is significantly higher.

Statistics from StatCounter showed last week that Chrome version 15 had become the most popular version of any web browser, with 23.6 per cent of the worldwide market, compared to Internet Explorer 6 which claimed 23.5 per cent.

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