Mighty was designed to be a better, faster web browser… by leveraging cloud computing resources to speed up your online experience. But when the company announced an early access program last year, it left a lot of folks scratching their heads.

That’s because unlike most web browsers, Mighty doesn’t run on your local computer. It runs in the cloud. So you need to run an app… to connect to your browser remotely. And it’s not free: users have to pay a monthly subscription. A year and a half later, Mighty’s founder has announced that he’s ceasing development of the project.

Mighty web browser

In a Twitter thread, founder Suhail Doshi spells out at least one reason for winding down the browser-as-a-service business.

One of the big ones is that laptop and desktop processors are getting better at single-core performance faster than server chips. And that means that while Mighty’s browser could render JavaScript up to twice as fast as a local browser running on your computer, it couldn’t hit its goals of speeding things up by 5 to 10 times as fast. In other words, it just didn’t seem like users were getting enough of a speed boost to justify paying a monthly subscription.

But it’s also unclear how big a market there would have been for a cloud-based browser subscription even if it was able to hit its performance benchmarks. Because over the past three decades, people have largely gotten used to the idea that while you may pay for internet service and access to specific sites and services on the web, browser themselves? Those aren’t things you pay for.

Mighty’s parent company, meanwhile, still has about half the funding it raised and is now pivoting to create a free AI art tool called Playground.

via Hacker News

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  1. There’s a lot of upstart “AI art” tools around, but if you’d been paying attention, you’d notice that most of them showed up shortly after Stable Diffusion released, which is free for anyone to download and run on any computer.
    It’s been really pissing off a lot of people actually.