Old Browsers and the Impact on Cloud PLM

Old Browsers and the Impact on Cloud PLM

I made my weekly social media catch up during the weekend. The following topic caught my attention. Google recently started to show some muscles to other browser players. Google Apps require newest browsers to run, and Google drops support for older versions and some browsers completely. Here is the evidence. Google blog – Our plans are to support modern browsers. Another one – Google drops support for old browser. And one more about drop to support Opera – Google service drop support for Opera. While I’m not Opera user, I found the following passage interesting:

According to the official Gmail Blog, Google will drop support for the following browsers and their predecessors: Firefox 3.5, Internet Explorer 7 and Safari 3. Dropping support does not mean that users will be blocked from using Google services, but it does mean that Google may develop and implement features that no longer work in those browsers.

It made me think about what browsers are in use in manufacturing companies and how it can potentially influence future development of cloud apps and specifically cloud PLM systems. I started from trying to understand what are current browser requirements from some of available cloud systems in CAD and PLM – Arena PLM, Autodesk PLM 360 and SolidWorks n!Fuze. Unfortunately, none of these systems didn’t provide upfront the information about supported browsers. I also believe that IE 7.0 is still quite popular in manufacturing companies. At least, I can see it fairly often.

Performance and Security

These are two issues that need to stand on the top of the list when discussing web browser support. Recently, I’ve seen an interesting comparison made by PTC about Windchill performance in different browsers. Newer browsers allow much better performance and variety of optimization. Another issue is security –  obsolete browsers are providing considerably more opportunities to security breaches.

What is my conclusion? I think web technologies are moving forward much faster than IT stack of manufacturing companies and other enterprises. Features, performance, security – this is only short list of issues. The question of browser support will become a significant topic standing between cloud PLM providers and their customers. To understand how to balance between minimum supported version and the ability of enterprise IT to move fast to new browser version will become a challenge very soon. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

pic courtesy themacobserver


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