What is a web browser?


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What is a web browser?

A couple enjoying the internet whilst out in their garden

What's coming up?

Once you're connected to the internet, you'll probably want to take a look around. A web browser program, or application, lets you do this, and because it comes with every smartphone, computer and tablet, getting started can be quick and easy.

In this activity, you'll examine what a web browser is, and how you start it on your device.

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What a web browser does

A web browser is a program that lets you move around, or browse, the internet. It's your main window onto the internet, and lets you view and interact with information you find on the internet.

A computer screen displaying a web page from the ABC
A computer screen showing the logos of four of the most popular web browsers, Internet Explorer or Edge, Firefox, Chrome and Safari

Different web browsers

There are different web browser programs available, and which one you have will depend on your device. Look for a program named Chrome, Safari, Edge, or Mozilla Firefox on your computer, tablet or smartphone.

Starting your web browser

To start the web browser, find the icon of the web browser on the screen of your device. If you are on a laptop or desktop computer, click on it. If you are using a smartphone or tablet, tap on it.

A window will open, ready for you to start exploring the internet.

 A computer screen with the Internet Edge logo highlighted
A close up of a smarthphone showing a Safari logo


You've completed the What is a web browser? activity.

With the browser open, you're ready to start exploring, also known as surfing the internet. Now you need to know how surfing works, and we'll tell you all about it in our next activity, Web addresses and links.