What is a browser? Simply explained

by Michaela

What a browser is can be explained quickly: It is a piece of software that makes it easier to browse the internet. There are different browsers that you can use depending on the device and operating system you have.

What is a browser?

Web browsers are your gateway to the World Wide Web. But how does it work?

  • A browser – that’s English for “browse” – is a program that displays websites correctly.
  • When you visit a website, you don’t just open the finished product. Instead, your browser receives instructions, which it then assembles into the website.
  • Because not all browsers speak all languages and dialects, i.e. understand the different versions of HTML, Firefox, for example, may display a website slightly differently to Google Chrome.
  • Likewise, an old version may not understand quite as many languages as a new one. That’s why it’s important to keep your browser of choice up to date.
  • But basic functions are the same everywhere, so most websites should work the same in all browsers. In any case, you will always see text, images and links as intended.
  • Browsers may look a little different and more compact on smartphones, but they work the same as on your computer.
  • Most browsers have additional functions. For example, there are Firefox variations that have built-in social media or anonymisation features to cater to your personal needs.

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