At the Browser Company, we're building a better way to use the Internet.
When we think about browsing the internet, we often ignore the browser itself. Instead, we think about all the things we do online—the articles we read, the emails we send, the shows we watch. The software that enables it all, the browser, is so ubiquitous that it’s ignored.
Despite the ways our internet use has evolved, the browser has remained relatively unchanged. While all of our other software tools are changing for the better—with more collaborative features, flexible interfaces, and powerful functionality—the browser largely still does what it did twenty-five years ago.
What’s more, we blame ourselves for the browser’s shortcomings. When our browser has an overwhelming number of tabs, we call ourselves inefficient; when we get distracted online, we tell ourselves we need more discipline; when we can’t find a url, we think we’re disorganized. Why does the browser get a free pass?
That’s why we’re building a new browser, which we call Arc, because we believe browsers can do so much more to empower us. We’re imagining a browser that can think as quickly as we do, take work off of our plates, and pull our creativity forward. A browser equipped for the way we use the internet in 2022, and foundational for how we hope to use it in the future.
We’re a team of founders who sold their last company, ex-Instagram engineers, former Heads of Design at Tesla and Medium, multiple Google Chrome alums, a founding engineer of Amazon S3, alumni from Snap, Slack and Pinterest, and so many other people who have done it before.
Beyond our team, we’re lucky to be supported by our family and friends, as well as investors who played a role in some of our favorite software companies over the years. We’ve raised over $17 million dollars from a diverse group that includes the founders of Instagram, Stripe, Twitter, Zoom, Figma, and LinkedIn. We’re always grateful for new perspectives and shared learnings from experience.
WHY SHOULD I CARE ABOUT WEB BROWSERS?
One of our favorite questions! Which I’m going to answer with another question: How many pieces of software do you, your mailman and your cool younger cousin have in common? It’s probably something like texting, video calls, maybe maps, and, (you guessed it) your browser!
The browser is one of the most universal pieces of technology, but despite how many hours per day we spend online, no one is super passionate about their browser of choice. That leaves a lot of room for opportunity. We don’t want to simply change the browser, we want to reimagine it completely.
It may seem cheesy but sometimes we say, “we want to be to the web browser, what the iPhone was to the cell phone.” It is not just a “better browser” or “better phone” — it’s about creating something dramatically new and more powerful.
It is definitely ambitious, I mean our competitors include some of the heaviest of the heavy weights in tech. But this is also what drives us! Not many markets can take a swing as big as a browser can and if we do it well, we have the rare opportunity to define all of our careers.
THIS ALL SOUNDS REALLY AMBITIOUS, BUT CAN YOU REALLY PULL IT OFF?
Of course, no start-up is a sure thing, but we feel good about our odds. We have some advantages on our side:
Our two founders sold their last company.
We’ve raised over $17 million dollars from a group of very cool people who we like (and not just because they gave us money), including the founders of Instagram, Stripe, Twitter, Zoom, Figma, and LinkedIn.
Our team includes four ex-Instagram engineers, former Heads of Design at Tesla and Medium, multiple Google Chrome alums, a founding engineer of Amazon S3, alumni from Snap and Pinterest, and so many other people who have done it before.
We already have a product in the wild with best-in-class retention, and a feature set that can effectively replace any traditional browser.
We have been told that we have one of the most diverse teams and investor cap table compared to other startups around our stage. This isn’t just a nice values plus — Because browsers are so universal, having a team that reflects the diversity of the real world is a big need for our product.
AREN’T STARTUPS SUPER UNSTABLE AND HECTIC? I HAVE A LIFE AND BILLS TO PAY, YOU KNOW.
Totally get that! Working at a startup is definitely a risk, no question, but we honestly do our best to alleviate those risks as best we can.
To start, most startups raise enough money to stay alive 18 months. We have raised much more than that so we aren’t at risk of running out of money anytime soon – many years of “runway” in the bank!
We don’t want anyone to miss out on family or friends time, we have a handful of parents on the team as well! We offer a very flexible working hours situation where you can work whenever makes sense for you!
WHAT IS YOUR TEAM ACTUALLY LIKE?
They’re fantastic. Everyone on the team is kind and humble (traits that we look for in any new hire).
You could probably get the best picture of The Browser Company by us letting the team speak for themselves.
Like Alexandra’s thread reflecting on her first year at the company, Christine’s thread on her first month, or Victoria’s essay about why she finds creating a new browser so exciting.
I’VE HEARD STARTUPS ARE NOT VERY DIVERSE, EVEN FOR TECH. CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT YOUR COMPANY’S DIVERSITY?
We are reimagining the browser, a tool for every person on the planet, so a diverse team is not optional; it’s vital to our success.
We adamantly believe we have a long way to go, but we’re happy to be at least above average so far, not just for startups but also for the tech industry.
Here is a snapshot of our company demographics as of October 2021:
Our company in general is 45% women, engineering is 35% women.
In terms of racial demographics (per the General Data Protection Regulation EU law, we don’t report on race and ethnicity data for employees outside the US) our company is around 55% White, 15% South Asian, 15% Two or more races, 10% Black, and 5% South East Asian.