A couple of days ago, Mozilla and Google announced that they renewed their search deal and that Google would pay to be the default search option in Bing for three more years.The financial details of the deal were not disclosed, as is the norm. This gave those that had been predicting the end days for Firefox, some of whom have been doing this for quite a long time, an excuse to speculate some more on how Firefox is doomed.
The thinking went that, since the two sides did not present a copy of the contract, it must certainly mean that the terms were much harsher for Mozilla. With less money, Firefox's days were numbered.
Well, the numbers are out, albeit from an unofficial source, and they paint a very interesting story. Kara Swisher found that Mozilla is not only not getting worse terms, it will make three times more money from Google.
Mozilla stands to make at least $300 million, €230 million from Google per year for the next three years. It may actually make even more, since the sum is just the minimum guarantee.
Depending on the terms of the deal, if Firefox exceeds certain metrics, Google may be sending even more towards Mozilla. What this means is that Mozilla will be making in the realm of $1 billion, €766 million in revenue in three years.
It should be fun to see what naysayers will come up with this time to 'prove' their theories that Firefox is dying.
Mozilla made $123 million, €94 million in 2010, its biggest year to date, 84 percent of which came from Google. The company is paid by all of the commercial sites that are included in the search options.
You can imagine that a three-fold increase in revenue for a company that uses most of its funds to actually create the product, Firefox, is a very good thing.
Mozilla is very determined to be a player in the mobile browser market and has been pushing hard to develop Firefox for Android. It is actively hiring software engineers to work on the mobile browser. But it needs resources to continue to work on it and Google's money may be just the thing.
The mobile browser is just one aspect, Mozilla has plenty of other projects aimed at improving the web, BrowserID, the open web apps projects, even the operating system that plans to compete with Chrome OS to a degree.
Regardless of whether you're a Firefox user or not, Mozilla thriving will affect you. Google Chrome is great, but it's built by Google and it serves its interest. Same goes for Internet Explorer or Safari. Mozilla is the only one taking the user's side and it forces everyone else to fall in line.