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July 26, 2007

Larry Page Wanted Foxit Reader in the Google Pack

Google Pack is a collection of free applications from Google and other third-parties that removes the hassle of installing and updating software. Google said it didn't receive money for including applications in the Pack and only chose apps that meet "Google's high software standards and are considered best in their class", but it's hard to explain some choices like Real Player, Norton Antivirus or even Adobe Reader when you could easily find better free software.

PDFzone reports that Larry Page, Google's co-founder, wanted to include Foxit Reader, a lightweight PDF reader. "[Marissa] Mayer said in an interview (...) that Page lobbied hard for several months to make Foxit Reader an element of Google Pack, the company's basic utilities download that enables PC users to quickly load new machines with the software they need to use Google services. Eventually, Google signed a deal with Adobe to make Reader the PDF viewer in Google Pack, despite Page's concerns about its load time before it went live in 2006."

Marissa Mayer explains that Google introduced the option to view PDF search results as HTML because Adobe's PDF reader was pretty big and slow. Foxit Reader's setup file has 1.67 MB, while the latest version of Adobe Reader has 22.3 MB (and more "bells and whistles").

{ via Mashable }


  1. It is not difficult to guess the deal included that Adobe will promote Google services. Such win-win arrangement forms a informal alliance.

  2. The post should note that Real Player is no longer included, and that the trial of Norton Antivirus has been replaced with a special edition of Norton Security Scan that is able to remove viruses when it scans.

    Interesting that Page wanted Foxit... I wonder how the debate went?

  3. Slim & trim, fast loading...all sounds great, but the fact is that Foxit just doesn't render PDFs as cleanly as Adobe, especially in print. I have to call this a good decision despite my dislike for Adobe's software bloat and other problems.

  4. << Real Player is no longer included. >>

    It's not included by default, but you can choose it.

    << Norton Antivirus has been replaced with a special edition of Norton Security Scan. >>

    Norton Security Scan is still an antivirus from Symantec.

  5. greate idea!

    and about norton software - the had very good products until about 7 years ago.
    now their products are incapable, heavy and anoying.

  6. Real Player is the worst.

    Norton Antivirus is the best.

    Adobe is too big and slow.

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  8. Its nice to hear that Larry wanted Foxit, I've been using it for a couple of years now and it really does beat Adobe's version hands down. I must admit I seldom print PDF's so can't comment on this but on screen they look perfect and the load time is almost nothing!

  9. i've been using foxit for more than 4 months and it works like gem especially loads quicker and faster. when i open pdf files with foxit its like opening a notepad file i mean that much quicker.