While being number three in the browser wars is akin to fighting over table scraps, Google is probably happy at the news that Chrome’s combined platform use has pushed it ahead of Safari, by a whole 0.03 percentage points. (“We’re number 3! We’re number 3!”) Chrome’s elevation in status was reported by Net Applications, which tracks the browser habits of 160 million unique monthly visitors to the 40,000 sites it monitors. The results are for the month of November.
Let’s first put things into context: Internet Explorer (IE), in all its glory, dominates the browser market with a market share of 63.6%, and Firefox a distant second at 24.7%. That leaves 11.7% for everyone else. Chrome now owns a 4.4% share, closely followed by Safari at 4.37%. There are some who might argue otherwise, but does it really matter who fills out the remaining 2.93%?
Chrome’s bump up into third place comes on the heels of the introduction of betas for Mac OS and Linux--basically moving Chrome into two new market niches. Collectively, this added 0.4 percentage points to Google’s total: from 4.0% of market share in October to 4.4% in November. On a percentage basis that’s not an insignificant increase, but in the overall scheme of things it doesn’t seem all that much. Still, “We’re number 3!”
Chrome doesn’t appear to be posed to threaten the dominate browsers in these new markets anytime soon. Chrome’s share of the Mac OS market went from 0.32% to 1.3%--Safari seems safe for now. And on Linux Chrome went from a 3.81% share to a 6.34% share--and safe too is Firefox.
Vince Vizzaccaro, an executive vice president of Net Applications doesn’t see Chrome threatening the OS hegemony of IE or Safari, but does suspect that Chrome might one day give Firefox a run for its money on Linux: “With the emergence of Chrome, I'll be curious to see if Chrome will be to Firefox on Linux what Firefox is to IE on Windows...a forceful competitor.”
Interestingly, Windows 7 usage trailed that of OS X by almost a percentage point earlier in the week. "Certainly, the trend line shows Windows 7 will surpass Mac (market) share soon,” believes Vince Vizzaccaro, executive vice president at Net Applications, according to Computerworld.
Microsoft still has a long ways to go before it catches up with Google in the search market, but the company's Bing search service shows tremendous promise as the fastest-growing U.S. search engine among the top 10, according to data from Nielsen.
In the month of August, Bing scoured the web 1.1 billion times, a jump of 22.1 percent over July. That was enough to give the search service a 10.7 percent share of the search engine market, edging ever closer to Yahoo, which dropped down 4.2 percent and now holds a 16 percent stake.
For the time being, Google enjoys a comfortable lead with a 64.6 percent share and 7 billion searches in August, but it has to be concerned with Bing's rapid upward climb. Moreover, a recent study indicates that users prefer the design and feature-set of Bing over Google, which should give the No. 1 search company cause for concern.
According to Jon Peddi research, growth in shipments of discrete videocards might mean the recession is winding down. It's also good news for AMD, whose graphics market share has been on the rise thanks to a combination of stabilizing pricing and a hot-selling Radeon product line.
This allowed AMD to snag a larger share of the overall market, which increased to 34 percent for the quarter. But it's not all bad news for Nvidia, who despite slipping four points still owns the lion's share at 64 percent.
All told, Jon Peddie Research said that 16.81 million discrete videocards where shipped in the second quarter of 2009, which is a 3 percent increase from the first quarter, but still down 15 percent over the same quarter one year ago. But JPR believes the worst is over, noting the numbers "demonstrated some much-needed firmness in Q2'09, adding more evidence that demand has bottomed and a recovery is in the offing."
The rich get richer, so the saying goes, and it applies to Intel's x86 CPU business. Already the No.1 CPU maker in the world, Intel's x86 processor market share rose to 80.5 percent in the second quarter of 2009, up from 78.2 percent in the first quarter.
According to market research firm Mercury Research, Intel's recent market share growth is attributable to the chip maker's aggressive desktop CPU price cuts, as well as increased inventory alleviating continued shortages in certain segments.
Meanwhile, competitor AMD saw its shares drop from 20.9 percent in the first quarter to 18.7 percent in the second, a trend the No. 2 chip maker can't be happy about. It was almost a year ago that AMD announced a split into separate design and manufacturing firms.
VIA's market share remained relatively unchanged, claiming just under 1 percent for the second consecutive quarter.
According to some recent reports, Acer was able to ship out 6.65 million netbooks during the second quarter of this year, raising their share in the global netbook market up to 18.5 percent, compared to 17 percent in the first quarter.
HP was able to hold onto their number one spot amongst netbook vendors, with 8 million shipments during Q2 of this year, giving them a 22 percent market share. Acer, however is in second place, followed by Dell, who maintains a share of 13.2 percent.
The total shipments were 36 million units during Q2, up from the 34.1 million shipped in Q1.
AMD hopes it will be able to wrest a sizable chunk of the global notebook market from Intel with the help of its new Tigris notebook platform, which is due out in September. According to a Digitimes report, quoting sources at notebook vendors, the company expects to gain back 15% share of the notebook market. Some of the major notebook vendors, HP, Toshiba, Acer and Asus, are said to have already placed orders for AMD’s upcoming Tigris notebook platform.
According to market researcher ComScore, Bing has had a successful second week in the world of search engines.
Bing is up roughly 3 percent from where Microsoft was before they rebranded and reworked Live Search, in terms of total searches and total query share.
“It appears that Microsoft Bing has continued to generate interest from the market for the second consecutive week,” stated ComScore’s Senior VP, Mike Hurt. “[This] early data reflect[s] a continued positive market reaction to Bing in the initial stages of its launch.”
Still though, it’s very early in the game. As great as this improvement is, Microsoft still has a lot of catching up to do if they plan to seriously compete with Google – and they seem to recognize that.
Just as motherboard sales have fallen because of the recession, so too has CPU sales, and it's finally caught up with Intel. According to new data from iSuppli, Intel's four-quarter growth streak has come to an end with the No. 1 chip maker seeing a decline in both sales and market share, much to the delight of AMD.
"After losing share to Intel on a sequential basis during three out of four quarters in 2008, AMD managed to reverse the trend in the first quarter of 2009," said Matthew Wilkins from iSuppli. "AMD increased its allocation of global microprocessor revenue due to strong performances in each area of its microprocessor portfolio, particularly in its notebook products."
Intel's market share fell by two and a half points for Q4 2008 while its shares of the global processor revenue inched backwards from 81.6 percent to 79.1 percent. Nearly all of it went to AMD, whose market share grew by 2.3 points.
Netbooks and Linux were supposed to be a match made in heaven. However, Linux has failed to capture the imagination of netbook users. Microsoft is elated to have made short work of Linux’s challenge in the netbook segment. Brandon LeBlanc, who earns his bread blogging on the official Windowsteamblog, reviewed the past year that saw Windows become the most popular netbook OS.
He imputed Windows emphatic surge on netbooks in the past year to its ease of use and people’s familiarity with the OS besides a host of other factors. Since the time Windows first appeared on netbooks, it has nearly wiped out all competition and now sits pretty with more than 90% market share.
“Looking forward, we can confidently say that no matter how netbook PC hardware evolves, we’re gearing up to ensure that Windows 7 will run great on them,” a sanguine LeBlanc wrote on the Windowsteamblog.