The software may be plagued by the law of unintended consequences, doing more damage to Firefox than to Microsoft. According to The Wall Street Journal, Google says the "software is designed to make it faster to browse the Web and easier to run applications without downloading software to a computer."
Most PCs come loaded with Internet Explorer as part of Microsoft Windows. That leaves Google with the challenge of getting consumers to download its new browser. Firefox is also software which must be downloaded. Google may end up competing more with Firefox, a product it has supported in the past, than with IE.
Most consumers don't care what browser they use as long as they have access to the internet. Microsoft's largest advantage is that it is part of the PC software package that people use without any thought as to how it might be changed.
Google will end up hurting an ally without doing any damage to its primary rival.
Douglas A. McIntyre is an editor at 247wallst.com.