Google's Chrome browser is now the go-to browser for 1 out of every 10 PC users, suggests new data by Net Market Share. Let's put that in perspective. At the beginning of 2010, Chrome's share of the browser market hovered around 5.6 percent. By the end of December 2010, Chrome's share has almost doubled, finishing the year with just under 10 percent.
Much of that has come at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser, still the most used browser on the planet, but no longer uncatchable. It's hard to scoff at a 57.08 percent share of the market, which is where IE ended 2010 at, but that's more than 5 percentage points down from January 2010.
It's also been a rocky year for Mozilla's Firefox browser, which started 2010 with a 24.43 percent share of the market and ended with 22.81 percent. As for the other browsers, Opera barely budged (dropping slightly from 2.38 percent to 2.23 percent), while Safari climbed more than a percentage point from 4.53 percent in January 2010 to 5.89 percent in December 2010.
After failing to keep up with the original Firefox 4 release schedule due to “regressions and sources of instability,” Mozilla had to revise its initial estimates and push back the launch of the stable version to 2011. The open source outfit on Wednesday shipped Mozilla Firefox 4 Beta 8. The actual release of the latest beta comes nearly a month later than originally anticipated.
According to the release notes, the latest build boasts a vastly improved Firefox Sync setup experience across desktop and mobile devices; speed, compatibility and functionality enhancements to WebGL; and a much more polished Add-Ons Manager, which now updates extensions automatically. Furthermore, Mozilla has fixed more than 1,400 bugs.
Google's Chrome browser didn't gain full extension support until late in the game, but developers have apparently stepped up to the plate in a big way. After looking over the Chrome Extension Gallery, TechCrunch is reporting that Chrome has surpassed 10,000 extensions. It's only been a year, and Chrome is closing in on Firefox with nearly 13,000 extensions.
Chrome has always been admired for its raw speed, but many users held back due to the lack of extensions support. Firefox tends to be a little slower, but the huge number of add-ons kept users locked in. The recent surge in Chrome usage could have a lot to do with the roll out of full extension support. The ball is really in Mozilla's court now, but early reports on Firefox 4 are very positive.
Google pushes out new versions of Chrome at warp speed, and Firefox has a reputation for slow, steady development. Even if Firefox 4 is a winner, Chrome might fly past it again in short order. Do you think extension numbers are telling a tale?
Those of you rocking Firefox 3.6.x, go ahead and check to see if you've automagically downloaded the latest update, version 3.6.13 (or 3.5.16 if you're still sitting pretty with Firefox 3.5). The latest update plugs more than a dozen security holes, including 11 deemed "critical," meaning the "vulnerability can be used to run attacker code and install software, requiring no user interaction beyond normal browser," Mozilla says.
Mozilla addressed a variety of security issues, including Java security, crash and remote code execution using HTML tags inside a XUL tree, buffer overflows, and more.
You can install the latest update by navigating to Help > Check for Updates... or by grabbing the newest version here.
Tabs? You use tabs within Firefox? The heck with that. Tabs are old-school once you see the power and prowess of one of the latest add-ons to cross my browser radar, Fox Splitter. It would be difficult to conceal exactly what this extension does in some kind of overextended metaphor or unnecessary build-up, given its name, so I’ll get right to the point: Why use new browser windows—or tabs themselves—when you can just split your current screen… in two!
Another month has gone by, and these days that usually means the gap between Microsoft's Internet Explorer and most other browsers tightens up. November was no exception.
According to Web analytics firm Net Applications, IE's market share slipped 0.9 percent in November, which is largely the result of IE6 giving up 1.3 percentage points during the same month. For IE6, that's the biggest drop in eight months.
It was another good month for Google's Chrome browser, which increased its total share from 8.5 percent to 9.25 percent, while Mozilla's Firefox went in the other direction, dropping from 22.83 percent to 22.75 percent. Safari now holds a 5.55 percent stake in the browser sweepstakes, which means IE, despite have lost more ground, still holds a larger chunk than all other browsers combined with a 58.26 percent share.
Google's Chrome browser is finally in first place, though not in any category the sultan of search wants to be in. The speedy browser topped Bit9's annual "Dirty Dozen" list of apps with the 76 found vulnerabilities, NetworkWorld reports.
The Dirty Dozen list is compiled based on information available from the National Institute of Standards and Technology's public National Vulnerability Database, so if Google has a beef with its ranking, Bit9 isn't to blame here, they're merely the messenger.
Taking up the No. 2 spot is Apple's Safari browser with 60 reported vulnerabilities, while Mozilla Firefox came in fifth with 51 flaws and Microsoft's Internet Explorer eighth with 32 flaws. In other words, all four major browsers made the list.
Outside of browsers, Microsoft Office was the worst offender, checking in at No. 3 with 57 flaws, followed by Adobe Acrobat (No. 4) with 54 vulnerabilities.
Mozilla has delivered the seventh Firefox 4 beta, albeit almost a couple of months behind its original beta schedule. The open source outfit had originally scheduled the release of the “feature complete” Beta 7 for September 17, 2010, but ended up pushing back the release of both the beta and the release candidate, which is now expected to arrive in early 2011.
According to Mozilla, the new features translate into a snappier and much more exciting browsing experience.
There's no reason to panic in Redmond, Internet Explorer is still the most dominant browser on the planet with a 59.3 percent share of the market. But at the same time, IE continues to trend in the wrong direction (for Microsoft), slipping slightly from the 59.7 percent share it claimed one month ago, and down from 62.1 percent to begin the year, according to Net Applications.
Meanwhile, Chrome has increased the size of its grip from 5.2 percent in January 2010 to 8.5 percent in October 2010. That's also half a percentage point higher than what it was last month.
Chrome is now the fastest growing browser out of the bunch, while Firefox, Safari, and Opera haven't been showing much movement as of late. Firefox, for example, dropped from 23 percent last month to 22.9 percent currently, while Safari didn't budge at 5.3 percent and Opera dropped from 2.4 percent to 2.3 percent.
You'll have to wait until next year before getting a chance to play with Firefox 4 in Release Candidate (RC) form. An updated release schedule shows the RC version being pushed back until early 2011.
"Development on Firefox 4 has not slowed down, and strong progress is being made daily. However, based on the delays in completing the 'feature complete' Beta 7 milestone against which our add-on developers and third-party software developers can develop, as well as considering the amount of work remaining to prepare Firefox 4 for final release, we have revised our beta and release candidate schedule," Mike Beltzner, VP of engineering for Firefox, wrote in an mailing list message earlier this week.
There have already been six beta version of Firefox 4 released in the wild, but after more than a month and a half of development, Firefox 4 beta 7 has yet to materialize. The problem, says ZDNet, has to do with issues integrating Firefox's older TraceMonkey engine, as well as trying to mesh the new JaegerMonkey engine.