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500 million downloads for Firefox

Last week, Open source darling, Mozilla Firefox (opens in new tab), reached a new milestone with half a billion downloads recorded since launching the browser back in November 2004.

Firefox accounts for more than one in every seven browsers surfing the web and has been a driving force behind Internet Explorer's progress in terms of interoperability and security.

The 400 million target was reached in September 2007 and at this rate, the billionth download will be reached in February 2010.

Spreadfirefox, which is where the Firefox community marketing meets up, wants to use that landmark to feed 25,000 people through the Freerice.com (opens in new tab) project.

Firefox 3 is getting ready for a launch in the first half 2008 with Firefox 4 (opens in new tab) likely to follow at the end of 2009.

Although Opera, Netcaptor and Maxthon amongst others pioneered multiple tabs, it was Firefox which made it popular along with the plug-in system which is now widely regarded as a distinguishing factor for Firefox.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.