|Chrome overtakes IE?|
Tuesday, 22 May 2012 13:00
Google's Chrome has narrowly overtaken Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) as the most widely used browser in the world, according to the latest statistics from Internet tracking service StatCounter.
While there is conflicting data from different Internet tracking services, there is general consensus that the StatCounter data does reflect a growing trend in the browser space and a clear move by consumers away from the default IE browser that comes standard with Windows PCs.
At its peak in the past week, Chrome took 32.76% of the global browser market, while IE dropped to 31.94%. Given Microsoft's default advantage, some critics say rather than total browser share, the more important metrics are those relating to the numbers of users who simply stay with their default browser as opposed to those who actively change it.
In March, StatCounter also reported that Chrome had briefly overtaken IE over a weekend. While the lead was short-lived, at the time, CEO of StatCounter Aodhan Cullen said it was a milestone.
"Whether Chrome can take the lead in the browser wars in the long term remains to be seen; however, the trend towards Chrome usage at weekends is undeniable. At weekends, when people are free to choose what browser to use, many of them are selecting Chrome in preference to IE.”
StatCounter data shows Chrome is the top browser in major markets such as India, Brazil and Russia, while it still trails behind IE and even Firefox in some areas such as the US, China and Germany. The StatCounter data is based on over 15 billion page views per month across more than three million Web sites.
While StatCounter is generally considered to be a reliable source of data, the latest figures do conflict with other estimates. The most recent figures from Net Market Share, for example, still place IE firmly in the lead in the desktop browser race with a commanding 54% of the market. Mozilla's Firefox takes 20%, while Chrome is third at 19% by Net Market Share's measurements.
Last month, Microsoft celebrated results from Net Market Share that showed IE had gained 1.2% of global usage – for the first time reversing its usage share decline of the last few years. It will remain to be seen if the anticipated IE 10 browser that is expected to launch with the Windows 8 platform will be able to retain users for Microsoft in the browser space.
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