For the past few years, it looked like Microsoft's Internet Explorer was well on its way to being usurped by spunky fan favorites. Early on it was Mozilla's Firefox that presented the biggest threat to IE's reign in the browser market, but more recently it's been Google's shiny Chrome browser that appeared to be on its way to the top, perhaps taking the lead this year. But then a funny thing happened. IE's share started to rise while Chrome's has been eroding.
Not a single month went by in 2011 in which Google's Chrome browser didn't grow its market share, and it's only moved in a backwards direction a few times since it was released nearly three and a half years ago in September 2008. At the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011, Chrome accounted for 10.36 percent of all desktop browsers, compared to Firefox's 23.69 percent and Internet Explorer's 58.35 percent. By the time 2011 came to a close, Chrome had grabbed a 19.11 percent share of the market, compared with Firefox's 21.83 percent and IE's 51.87 percent. But so far in 2012, Chrome has only given up browser market share.
Google's Chrome browser failed to increase its market share last month for just the second time in two years, while Microsoft's Internet Explorer added more than a percentage point, according to data by NetMarketShare. That's not the start to 2012 Google was hoping for, though there are still reasons to be optimistic about Chrome's future.
Cake, toasts and cheers; Microsoft’s been having a hell of a party up in Redmond. Why, you ask? Is Windows 8 shipping early? Did Xbox sales spike even higher? Did somebody actually buy a Windows Phone? None of the above. Today, the Internet Explorer team is celebrating a near-death experience as the US browser share of IE6 finally dipped under one percent. That's right, the non-standards-compliant beast is finally rasping out its dying breath.
Mozilla Firefox is still the world’s second most popular desktop browser ahead of Google Chrome, as per Net Applications. But as far as Mozilla is concerned, that’s probably the only positive to have come out of the analytics firm’s latest monthly browser usage data.
The Microsoft PR team in charge of Internet Explorer has a difficult job on its hands. Finding the upside of declining market share isn’t exactly the easiest job in the world you know. As a result of the overall trend working against IE, the message this year has been mostly focused around browser share in Windows 7. When you limit the dataset to this one narrow focus, Microsoft appears to be making at least some progress at bouncing back, though mostly at the expense of Mozilla.
There are more people surfing the Web with various builds of Internet Explorer at this moment than there are for any other browser, which has been the case ever since Microsoft buried Netscape Navigator a long time ago. But if you want to talk about the world's most popular single browser build, that title now belongs to Google's Chrome 15, according StatCounter, a website analytics company.
Starting next month, Microsoft will begin automatically upgrading some Windows users to the latest version of Internet Explorer available for their PCs, the Redmond software juggernaut announced in a blog post today. These silent updates are deemed an "important step in helping to move the Web forward," though consider this a trial run.
Browser vendors are constantly on the lookout for things to brag about. While just about any type of bragging rights are welcome, vendors are mostly found crowing about either speed, security or HTML5 compliance. This time it’s Google’s turn to break into a victory lap, for Chrome has just been crowned the most secure browser in a study conducted by Accuvant Labs.
At the rate things were going, it was only a matter of time before Google's Chrome browser skipped ahead of Mozilla Firefox, and according to at least one Web analytics company, it's finally happened. This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who's paid attention to the browser market. Chrome has been gaining ground ever since it was released, while Firefox long appeared to plateau, and even fall back a step a time or two.