Flock 3.5.3 running on Windows 7 displaying its new tab page
|Initial release||April 11, 2005|
|Last release||184.108.40.20641 (February 1, 2011[±])|
|Preview release||none (n/a) [±]|
|Operating system||Windows, OS X, Linux|
|Available in||Catalan, Chinese (both Traditional and Simplified), English (US, Australian, British, Canadian), Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Japanese, Italian, Polish, Portuguese (Portugal + African Portuguese Speaking Countries and Brazil), Russian, Slovak, Spanish (Latin American and Spain)|
Flock is a discontinued web browser that specialized in providing social networking and Web 2.0 facilities built into its user interface. Earlier versions of Flock used the Gecko HTML rendering engine by Mozilla. Version 2.6.2, released on January 27, 2011, was the last version based on Mozilla Firefox. Starting with version 3, Flock was based on Chromium and so used the WebKit rendering engine. Flock was available as a free download, and supported Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and, at one time, Linux as well.
Flock was the successor to Round Two, who raised money from Bessemer Venture Partners, Catamount Ventures, Shasta Ventures and other angel investors. Bart Decrem and Geoffrey Arone co-founded the company. Flock raised $15 million in a fourth round of funding led by Fidelity Ventures on May 22, 2008, for an estimated total of $30 million, according to CNET. The company's previous investors, Bessemer Venture Partners, Catamount Ventures, and Shasta Ventures, also participated in the round.
Flock 2.5 integrated social networking and media services including MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Flickr, Blogger, Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, etc. When logging into any of the supported social services, Flock could track updates from friends: profiles, uploaded photos, and more. Flock's latest 2.5 version added Twitter Search functionality, multi-casting of status updates to multiple services, and the introduction of instant messaging via Facebook Chat in the browser.
Other features include:
In February 2008, AOL announced that it would discontinue support for the Netscape browser, and recommended Flock and Firefox as alternative browsers to its userbase of Netscape 9 users. For the Netscape 8 userbase, AOL recommended only the Flock browser to its users. In March 2008, Flock announced that they had seen "nearly 3 million downloads" and a 135% increase in active users in the first two months of 2008. They also announced "more than 70 percent of Flock users making it their default browser of choice".
When Flock's discontinuation was announced in April 2011, reviewer Joey Sneddon of OMG! Ubuntu! offered the analysis: "Whether this was down to poor implementation design wise (one needs only glance at 'Rockmelt' for an example of a social browser done right) or just general apathy towards having alerts from twitter, flickr, facebook, digg et al. in your face all of the time is moot: Flock has flocked off and for all its innovation it never quite lived up to its own hype."
Upon exiting beta, Flock won a number of awards:
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