Web Browser

Web Browser is a common term which is frequently used by people while discussing the Internet. However, the exact definition of a web browser is known by few only.

Web Browser Definition: A software application used to access information on the World Wide Web is called a Web Browser. When a user requests some information, the web browser fetches the data from a web server and then displays the webpage on the user’s screen. 

It is also important to know in detail about what a web browser is for candidates preparing for Government exams. This is because Computer Knowledge is a common topic for many competitive exams and questions based on web browsers may be asked. 

Brush up your Computer Awareness for the upcoming Competitive Exams.

Refer to the links below for preparation:

In this article, we shall discuss in detail the different types of web browsers and their development over the years. Also, web browser functions have been given along with some sample questions from the competitive exam perspective. 

To learn more about the other Computer Awareness related topics, candidates can check the links given below:

Basics of Cloud Computing Types of Computer
Computer Virus Computer Shortcut Keys
Computer Abbreviations High Level Computer Language

History of Web Browser

Today web browsers are easily accessible and can be used on devices like computer, laptops, mobile phones, etc. but this evolution of making browsers available for easy use took many years. 

Given below are some salient points which one must know with regard to the history of web browsers:

  • “WorldWideWeb” was the first web browser created by Tim Berners Lee in 1990. This is completely different from the World Wide Web we use today 
  • In 1993, the “Mosaic” web browser was released. It had the feature of adding images and an innovative graphical interface. It was the “the world’s first popular browser”
  • After this, in 1994, Marc Andreessen (leader of Mosaic Team) started working on a new web browser, which was released and was named “Netscape Navigator”
  • In 1995, “Internet Explorer” was launched by Microsoft. It soon overtook as the most popular web browser
  • In 2002, “Mozilla Firefox” was introduced which was equally as competent as Internet Explorer
  • Apple too launched a web browser in the year 2003 and named it “Safari”. This browser is commonly used in Apple devices only and not popular with other devices
  • Finally, in the year 2008, Google released “Chrome” and within a time span of 3 years it took over all the other existing browsers and is one of the most commonly used web browsers across the world

For those who are willing to know more about the Internet, can visit the linked article. 

Other Related Links
Basics of MS Excel MS Word
MS PowerPoint Hardware and Software Questions

Functions of Web Browser

Our dependency on the Internet has massively increased. Stated below are functions of web browsers and how are they useful:

  • The main function is to retrieve information from the World Wide Web and making it available for users
  • Visiting any website can be done using a web browser. When a URL is entered in a browser, the web server takes us to that website
  • To run Java applets and flash content, plugins are available on the web browser
  • It makes Internet surfing easy as once we reach a website we can easily check the hyperlinks and get more and more useful data online
  • Browsers user internal cache which gets stored and the user can open the same webpage time and again without losing extra data 
  • Multiple webpages can be opened at the same time on a web browser
  • Options like back, forward, reload, stop reload, home, etc. are available on these web browsers, which make using them easy and convenient

Given below are a few difference between articles for candidates to learn more about the different computer features:

Difference Between Internet and WWW Difference Between Firewall and AntiVirus
Difference Between RAM and ROM Difference Between Virus and Malware
Difference Between Hardware and Software Difference Between IPv4 and IPv6

Types of Web Browser

The functions of all web browsers are the same. Thus, more than the different types there are different web browsers which have been used over the years.

Discussed below are different web browser examples and their specific features:

1. WorldWideWeb

  • The first web browser ever
  • Launched in 1990
  • It was later named “Nexus” to avoid any confusion with the World Wide Web
  • Had the very basic features and less interactive in terms of graphical interface
  • Did not have the feature of bookmark

2. Mosaic

  • It was launched in 1993
  • The second web browser which was launched
  • Had a better graphical interface. Images, text and graphics could all be integrated
  • It was developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications
  • The team which was responsible for creating Mosaic was lead by Marc Andreessen
  • It was named “the world’s first popular browser”

3. Netscape Navigator

  • It was released in 1994
  • In the 1990s, it was the dominant browser in terms of usage share
  • More versions of this browser were launched by Netscape
  • It had an advanced licensing scheme and allowed free usage for non-commercial purposes

4. Internet Explorer

  • It was launched in 1995 by Microsoft
  • By 2003, it has attained almost 95% of usage share and had become the most popular browsers of all
  • Close to 10 versions of Internet Explorer were released by Microsoft and were updated gradually
  • It was included in the Microsoft Windows operating system
  • In 2015, it was replaced with “Microsoft Edge”, as it became the default browser on Windows 10

5. Firefox

  • It was introduced in 2002 and was developed by Mozilla Foundation
  • Firefox overtook the usage share from Internet Explorer and became the dominant browser during 2003-04
  • Location-aware browsing was made available with Firefox
  • This browser was also made available for mobile phones, tablets, etc.

6. Google Chrome

  • It was launched in 2008 by Google
  • It is a cross-platform web browser
  • Multiple features from old browsers were amalgamated to form better and newer features
  • To save computers from malware, Google developed the ad-blocking feature to keep the user data safe and secure
  • Incognito mode is provided where private searching is available where no cookies or history is saved
  • Till date, it has the best user interface

Apart from these, Opera Mini web browser was introduced in 2005 which was specially designed for mobile users. Before the mobile version, the computer version “Opera” was also released in 1995. It supported a decent user interface and was developed by Opera Software.

As for Government aspirants, apart from Computer Knowledge, various other subjects are included in the exam syllabus. The links for the same are given below:

Logical Reasoning Quantitative Aptitude
Verbal Ability Current Affairs
Static GK Banking Awareness

Sample Questions on Web Browsers

For most competitive exams, questions in the form of MCQ (multiple choice questions) are asked. Thus, given below are web browser example questions for the reference of candidates.

Q 1. ______ rendering engine is used by Mozilla Firefox

  1. Trident
  2. Presto
  3. Gecko
  4. WebKit
  5. Tasman

Answer: (3) Gecko

Q 2. Which of these web browsers is also known as Nexus?

  1. Opera
  2. Chrome
  3. Internet Explorer
  4. Firefox
  5. WorldWideWeb

Answer: (5) WorldWideWeb

Q 3. Which of the following is considered as “the world’s first popular browser”?

  1. Firefox
  2. Mosaic
  3. Nexus
  4. Netscape Navigator
  5. MSIE (Microsoft Internet Explorer)

Answer: (2) Mosaic

Q 4. In which year was the first web browser created?

  1. 1992
  2. 1991
  3. 1990
  4. 1995
  5. 1989

Answer: (3) 1990

Q 5. Which among the following web browsers was the first to introduce graphical interface?

  1. Mosaic
  2. Nexus
  3. WorldWideWeb
  4. Netscape
  5. Opera

Answer: (4) Netscape

The questions above will help candidates apprehend the type or pattern in which questions may be asked in the final exam from this topic. To get the Preparation Strategy for Competitive Exams, visit the linked article. 

Get more questions from the various subjects to excel in the upcoming Government exams, aspirants can also refer to the following links:

Free Online Mock Test Series with Solutions Previous Year Question Papers with Solutions
Free Online Government Exam Quiz Bank PO Question Paper with Solutions

For any further information for the upcoming exams or study material and preparation tips, turn to BYJU’S for assistance. 

Frequently Asked Questions on Web Browser


Q 1. What is the definition of a web browser?

Ans. Web Browser is a software application for accessing the information on the World Wide Web. It is the function of the web browser to retrieve the information requested by the user from any website.

Q 2. What is the difference between a web browser and a search engine?

Ans. A web browser is a software application used to retrieve data from webpages, whereas, Search Engine is kind of a website where a user can search for information and the results based on the same are displayed on the screen. To get a tabulated difference between a search engine and web browser, visit the linked article.

Q 3. What the best web browser examples?

Ans. Given below are the examples of the most commonly used web browsers:

  • Google Chrome
  • Internet Explorer
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Opera

There were web browsers like Netscape Navigator and WorldWideWeb, which were used before the above-mentioned browsers.


Q 4. When was the first web browser released?

Ans. The first web browser which gained public attention was the WorldWideWeb, which was launched in 1990.

Government Exam 2023


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