Apple Safari browser for Windows already exists with millions of users

“Literally millions of people use a big chunk of Safari on Windows. It’s the browser built into iTunes. It works today,” John Allsopp writes for The Sydney Morning Herald. “So arguably the quickest, most standards compliant browser around, which by the way is based on the open source KHTML rendering engine, is available right now on Windows. And to use iTunes, you need to use it. Apple contributes to the KHTML project, so many of its innovations will find their way into that browser. On the Mac, Windows and UNIX variants.”

“Apple, along with KHTML, Opera and Mozilla, may have two or three years to innovate on the browser front, without any competition from Microsoft,” Allsopp writes. “And Apple might just have found the killer app to drive people to adopt a new, lightweight, fast, open source based, standards-compliant multi-platform browser – mainstream commercial online music.”

“We can only hope to see Safari for Windows, and maybe other platforms. And with it thriving browser innovation based on the open standards of the World Wide web,” Allsopp writes. “And if that happened, you can be sure Microsoft would get in on the act as well, as they did when IE was not the colossus it has become.”

Full article with much more about web standards, Microsoft’s utter lack of innovation with Internet Explorer, and more here.


  1. I think Safari should have something like extensions in firefox, anyway both safari and mozilla are really good,
    but i like to see sfari in windows altough i don’t think it would be as fast in mac os x.

  2. Only reason for me to use M$ie on my Mac anymore is when a website is stupid enough to restrict its compliance to that browser exclusively and I can’t get around it, even when trying to emulate it in Safari – usually it’s a utility company or a credit card payment site – but that is slowly changing, thankfully.

  3. Very interesting article. Even though I knew there was Safari tech under iTunes, I hadn’t really thought about what that means or could mean.
    Get Google and all the other Microsoft competitors into KHTML and distributing the basic platform and you may just end up with a very large installed base using the underlying (hidden) technology. It’s under the Microsoft radar. Then spring the full browser interface and take Microsoft by surprise. Microsoft would have a hard time getting their big tanker of a company turned around fast enough to ward off some major damage.

  4. Ya, Microsoft is like a big carrier without the supporting flotilla of ships for protection because they’ve pissed off most the world. iTunes/Safari/KHTML is like a torpedo in the water, still too far out to show up on sonar. It shows and Microsoft can’t turn that big ship fast enough. Bang, major damage. Wouldn’t sink Microsoft but it would send them back to port for a very long time.
    I love it ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  5. LessIsMore…The trouble for Microsoft is Longhorn is a long way off and adoption by a large percentage of Windows users is even further off. Insurgents have a 2-3 year free window and then a 3-5 year cushion.

  6. Hmm. Safari is not a money maker for Apple so the major benefit of porting it to Windows would be mindshare. Might pay off but then again maybe not. Doubt if Steve will do this.

    Also iTunes is the only REAL alternative in that area because it is so far ahead of the others and it was first. I have to wonder if windows drones would use Safari even if it was handed to them on a silver platter.

  7. JackA…the major benefit of porting it to Windows would be mindshare
    Exactly. I read comments where it was said that iTunes is the best Windows software ever written. Get a couple more things on Windows that impresses the drones, and get the mainstream press to write about it and you may just get some traction. Especially if you get Google and others using the same underlying technology. If the drones are as impressed as they seem to be with iTunes/iPod maybe they will start checking out more Apple wares.

  8. “So arguably the quickest, most standards compliant browser around…”

    Let’s get real for a moment, here kids. IE 6, on a Windows machine built anywhere in the last 2 to 3 years, is still staggeringly faster than *ANYTHING* on Mac OS X. Safari still gets schooled by IE on Windows, it’s just a fact. Until Apple figures out how to render things that fast, how to bury Safari into the OS so it’s no longer a program, and how to get FrontPage designed images to act nativly, web browsing will be slower on the Mac.

    Anyone who is insane enough in their MacHugging to dispute me, shut your mouth and go play with a current Dell or Gateway somewhere, and load pages like or on it, then do it in your 1.5 GHz Powerbook or your dual 1.8 G5. It’ll make you sad. But let’s be real … the web is “pwned” by Microsoft, cuz they stole, cheated and crushed their way into domination. *nix variants are still the dominate web server in the world, but probably not for long, just showing how stupid IT people are based the MS brianwashing dept.

    Java performace is awful on the Mac in comparison with on Windows – it’s a crappy but true fact. Why? MS won the Java war by making their own, then bundling it and sticking it up people’s asses until they had 80-90% deployment. Then what did they do? They changed Java away from the way Sun does it, which means… oh… wait for it… nobody but MS based machines can run it properly, and that quickly.

    I hate it too … it’s so obvious to Mac people how MS succeeds in dominating, but they do. “Yay for Safari’s engine in iTunes for Windows… but don’t compare it to web browsing on 2k or XP, that’s just diluted dreaming.

  9. I’m not sure that is the WebKit underneath the iTunes music store. I seem to remember it discussed at length on the developer lists, and there wasn’t any indication that that was the framework being used.

    Anyway, there is no incentive for Apple to release Safari on Windows. Let’s face it, at like 95% of the market on Windows dominated by IE, why bother putting the staff on it, and the support people? There’d be nothing for them to gain by this. If people want the KHTML browser on Windows, it will have to be some other party that does it I’m guessing, but they WOULD get all of Apple’s improvements.

  10. sad but true

    the only real issue I have is with Java and other plugin games that the kids play online (young kids) and the fact that 8 out of 10 times it is just a matter of time before they will crash safari…so I send my young ones to my wintel pc sadly

  11. Silver02Suby is so correct….

    1. IE6 is the all-around best browser available today. It works with all of the protocols used by web developers.

    2. Safari may try repeat try to follow standards however it is unable to render the MS protocols that are used by the internet.

    Apple has lost the battle for the web.

    iTMS uses server:WebObjects client:khtml

  12. sputnik you are so wrong its not even funny. IE7 is the best browser in the biz. followed by mokilla and safari extreme which will be released at wwdc. my friend benjamin told me

  13. Interesting article, childish comments. Hey wait…they were probably made by children. Sorry, I keep forgetting that there are people under 21 with very few life experiences to draw upon who post in places like this.

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