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Browser competition

Naver aims to overtake Chrome in Korea with own browser Whale in 3 years

Apr 27, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

Naver aims to overtake Chrome in Korea with own browser Whale in 3 years

South Korea’s top web portal operator and search engine Naver Corp. aims to overtake Google Inc.’s Chrome as the top web browser in the domestic market over the next three years.

Naver, which launched a PC version of its own freeware web browser Whale in 2017 and a mobile version of the service in 2018, is targeting the top post in the Korean market with a custom-tailored service in “the Korean Internet environment.”

“A browser is the basic gateway that connects people to the Internet as well as a platform for web service developers. With our browser Whale, we aim to become the top player in the local market,” Kim Hyo, head of Naver’s Whale division, said at a Naver Meet-Up meeting on Apr. 27.

He said developing and fostering a homegrown web browser is important to create a sustainable web ecosystem in the country.

Naver aims to overtake Chrome in Korea with own browser Whale in 3 years
Currently, Google’s Chrome is the dominant web browser in Korea with a 53% market share, followed by Samsung Electronics Co.’s Samsung Internet (14.1%), Apple's Safari (13.1%) and Naver’s Whale (7.6%), according to industry tracker Statcounter.

Naver’s Whale features "omni-tasking," a split-screen function that allows users to browse two websites with a dual tab.

Other functions include the “Side Bar” that shows frequently used tools and the “Hangul Viewer” that allows users to read documents made in HWP file.

Write to Min-Ki Koo at kook@hankyung.com

In-Soo Nam edited this article.

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