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Firefox Passes IE6 In Browser Share

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the die-already dept.

Internet Explorer 350

Jared sends word of Ars Technica coverage of Net Applications' monthly browser share numbers. What's significant this time is that Firefox has finally passed IE6 in worldwide share. "Internet Explorer remains ahead of the rest of the competition, but since month after month it continues to lose ground to all other browsers, Firefox has now finally surpassed IE6, which is easily the most hated version of Microsoft's browser. ... In October, all browsers except for IE and Opera showed positive growth. Between October and September, Internet Explorer dropped a significant 1.07 percentage points (from 65.71 percent to 64.64 percent) and Firefox moved up a sizeable 0.32 percentage points (from 23.75 percent to 24.07 percent). ... Although IE's decline seems to be unceasing, the real shame is that the old versions have more share than the newer ones (we can only hope that as Windows 7 gains popularity, this trend will reverse)." Ars presents a graph with their own site's browser share picture, and as you might expect it's very different from the general population's.

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350 comments

StatCounter etc (5, Interesting)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975692)

Just remember that StatCounter and other stat counting sites tend to be very US and English language generic - completely ignoring Russia and China and such.

What's interesting is that Opera actually has 40-60% marketshare in CIS countries [opera.com] , better than both FF and IE (and not just a single version).

But good that people are finally starting to move off from IE6.

Antarctica! (5, Interesting)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975730)

And Firefox has a 100.0% share in Antarctica (maybe just 1 user?) http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser-an-monthly-200902-200902-bar [statcounter.com]

Re:Antarctica! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29975924)

Hey, those people are all scientists. Therefore, smart enough not to run IE.

Re:Antarctica! (5, Funny)

nicodoggie (1228876) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976120)

Well, obviously Tux uses Firefox doesn't he??

Re:Antarctica! (3, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976568)

No way. Real penguins use IceWeasel, of course!

Re:Antarctica! (4, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976188)

I just wondered why the Statcounter site showed without and images or stylesheets... Then I remembered that it was completely blocked in AdBlock. Because it's a nasty dirty disgusting privacy-raping piece of shit of a tracking site!

I would see their statistics as more than useless, as everyone with half a brain already blocks them and their nasty friends.

Re:Antarctica! (5, Funny)

rvw (755107) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976320)

And Firefox has a 100.0% share in Antarctica (maybe just 1 user?) http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser-an-monthly-200902-200902-bar [statcounter.com]

Those damned penguins!

Re:Antarctica! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976594)

Yeah; I feel for the penguin. Next we will hear that Balmer has ran out of Chairs, so now he is throwing Penguins against the wall.

Re:Antarctica! (1, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976322)

You would think IceWeasel would win there....

Re:StatCounter etc (5, Insightful)

Dartz-IRL (1640117) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975746)

The thing is, most people see Internet Explorer as 'The Internet', in much the same way that they see Ms Windows as 'The computer'. I mean, I installed Firefox on a parents laptop, and they're first worry was that they wouldn't be able to find their favourite website 'because it was a different internet'. People who don't grasp this concept will never see a reason to upgrade, and unfortunately, this means a silent majority of PC users probably never will.

Re:StatCounter etc (-1, Troll)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975784)

The thing is, most Americans see Internet Explorer as 'The Internet'

Fixed that for you.

Re:StatCounter etc (3, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975846)

The thing is, most Americans see Internet Explorer as 'The Internet'

Fixed that for you.

No my mum is an Australian and she is exactly the same. Fortunately she has three offspring to install software for her.

Re:StatCounter etc (2, Interesting)

shadowknot (853491) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975978)

I don't like to feed trolls normally but I do wonder that if T. Rolland McFlamebait over here had posted something akin to "The thing is, most Chinese see Internet Explorer as 'The Internet'" people would find it less acceptable. It seems, at least to me and maybe I _am_ biased, that it's often fine to beat-up on Americans or use the convenient stereotype without the racist connotations that would be associated were you talking about another culture or people.

Re:StatCounter etc (4, Insightful)

Eivind (15695) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976112)

True. And it generalizes. The general rule is, you're 'allowed' to say things about majority-groups who are in power, that you can't say about others.

So, if you're adult, male, white, middle-class, christian, heterosexual, well-educated, you're fair game.

Whereas if you're a lesbian, jewish, old, female from Ghana, you can hardly be *described* without it being perceived as racism.

Re:StatCounter etc (1, Insightful)

jabjoe (1042100) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976404)

I really don't think it's that bad. It is acceptable to mock majority groups with power because they cann't be described as being oppressed. It's just not the same for minority groups as they will be uncertain enough about their place already. It's just a case of show a little empathy. And that's before you bring the tangled mess of history into it. If you're a adult, male, white, middle-class, heterosexual and well-educated, in the west at least, you are at such a tremendous advantage (because those with power are like you) you just can't ask for the same protections as a old jewish lesbian from Ghana.

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976486)

I personally find that kinda normal ?

I'd maybe add that you can make fun of your own peer group, i.e. gay jokes by gays, Jew jokes by jews... don't bother me. I remember once during a one-woman-show trying to imagine it was a guy on stage... the girl was hilarious, I'd have docked a guy for the same spiel.

Re:StatCounter etc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976150)

I don't like to feed trolls normally but I do wonder that if T. Rolland McFlamebait over here had posted something akin to "The thing is, most Chinese see Internet Explorer as 'The Internet'" people would find it less acceptable. It seems, at least to me and maybe I _am_ biased, that it's often fine to beat-up on Americans or use the convenient stereotype without the racist connotations that would be associated were you talking about another culture or people.

You're right. It is indeed acceptable to make fun of Americans. But I'm quite sure that if, say the Chinese, start to piss of the entire world on a daily basis it would be pretty acceptable to make fun of them too.

Posting as AC since my country managed to piss off the entire world with a certain peace prize and that's just too embarrassing...

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976204)

You call it a flame because you are an American?

The fact is that MOST people in former soviet republic countries dont even *use* Internet Explorer, which makes the poster I replied to demonstrably myopic. Sure, maybe he isnt from America after all, but that doesnt change the fact that most of the world isnt stuck on Internet Explorer. IE usage is below 50% worldwide. Thats a fact. He begins with incorrect bullshit.

Re:StatCounter etc (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976218)

Sorry, Italy here, and most of my lusers at work can't grasp the difference between internet and internet explorer. most of them will mix the browser and the net "my internet is broken and the like).

The similarity in the name and my fellow Italians ignorance in english don't help either.

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

fredrik70 (161208) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976402)

Not true, my mother thinks the same, she's swedish. My gf's british parents thought the same (until I reeducated them - they still insists on ie because they can run all their weird flashgames and what not in ie - yes their computer crawls with viruses and trojans, one feels slightly dirty after using it)

Re:StatCounter etc (-1, Redundant)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976250)

I mean, I installed Firefox on a parents laptop, and they're first worry was that they wouldn't be able to find their favourite website 'because it was a different internet'.

This is a tired anecdote that is by far a tiny minority today.

Re:StatCounter etc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976280)

The solution is simple. Delete the IE icon. Replace it with a Firefox (or other browser of choice) and call it "The Internet"

The when your mum asks, say its been "upgraded" by windows updates. Happiness all round.

Re:StatCounter etc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976530)

say its been "upgraded"

...to Web 2.0(tm)?

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

Zonnald (182951) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976520)

So your parents didn't actually research this for themselves to make an informed descision?
Did they actually tell you they felt they needed a change because they where having a problem?
Just wondering.

Re:StatCounter etc (4, Informative)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975756)

Opera is also listed as #3 for Europe, ahead of Safari and Chrome. The gap between Firefox (all versions) and IE (all versions) is also rather narrower for Europe than for North America.
http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser-eu-monthly-200902-200902-bar [statcounter.com]
http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser-na-monthly-200902-200902-bar [statcounter.com]

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976220)

something a bit more current (last 3 days so not stat significant):
http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser_version-eu-monthly-200911-200911-bar [statcounter.com] - FF3.5 is most popular in Europe (ie6 has half of FF3.0)
http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser_version-na-monthly-200911-200911-bar [statcounter.com] - IE7 is most popular in US (ie6 ~= safari)

overall
EU [statcounter.com] (50% v 40%)
US [statcounter.com] (60% v 30%)

Re:StatCounter etc (2, Insightful)

Negrin (1100257) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976590)

The gap between Firefox (all versions) and IE (all versions) is also rather narrower for Europe than for North America.

Yeah, but there's something worth considering. I'm from Poland, which boasts FF leadership over IE (I am an Opera user myself but still) and there's something I realized, thinking about Poland's (and other Central European countries') results and also the massive Opera market share in Russia. Thing is, these are the countries with lower Internet penetration than North America. You have considerably moms and dads online, not to mention grannies and grandpas than, say, in the States. It's only natural that a younger, more tech-savvy Internet population will boost FF (or, more rarely, Opera) usage. Consequently, this is reflected in combined stats for Europe, because it's the less-developed countries that "help" Firefox ratings. If you look at many Western European countries, you will see results similar to the American ones. Granted, that theory totally doesn't explain 60% Firefox market share in Germany :)

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

Forthac4 (836529) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975950)

What are you talking about? StatCounter has information an russia and china.

Re:StatCounter etc (5, Informative)

aodhan (1080405) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976022)

Hi,

I work at StatCounter and I would just like to point out that we have a very diverse sample size from around the world.

As per http://gs.statcounter.com/faq#sample-size [statcounter.com] for July 2009 here was the breakdown of our sample pageviews for the month.

        * 1.3 billion United States
        * 570 million Brazil
        * 280 million Turkey
        * 260 million Germany
        * 250 million Thailand
        * 240 million China
        * 240 million United Kingdom
        * 180 million Indonesia
        * 160 million Canada
        * 140 million India
        * 109 million Russia

Re:StatCounter etc (1)

zullnero (833754) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976354)

What's interesting is that Opera actually has 40-60% marketshare in CIS countries, better than both FF and IE (and not just a single version).

I'm not sure why you'd find that more interesting than the fact that Chrome passed Safari or whatever.

The only thing I can think of that means anything in this whole "browser wars" thing, and it doesn't mean as much now as it did 4 years ago, is how vital it is to absolutely stick to web standards as a result of cross browser compliance. Otherwise, it's pretty much irrelevant. My phone has a webkit browser fully integrated into it, so when I hit the web with it, I'm probably being detected as using Safari or whatever...and when I do a search with my Windows desktop through the file explorer, I'm making a hit with IE...and when I fire up Firefox to browse the news...same deal. You can't even detect if people are committed users of a browser anymore (well, unless you install spyware on their router to log their browser usage) because you kind of are stuck using so many different ones over the course of a day these days. And that's why I'm saying the browser wars are pretty much irrelevant, and at the very least, these silly usage stats. And now that OS's have embraced the notion of full browser integration, it's only going to get redundant with OS usage stats.

Hrmm (5, Funny)

acehole (174372) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975748)

So when are they going to rip the skin off Firefox to show "Netscape Navigator - Double Ultimate Gold edition"?

Re:Hrmm (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976124)

Hey you just gave me flashbacks... To the days of Blink tags and "under construction" geocities pages filled with bookmarks and animated GIFs.

I think I'll have to delay dinner...

This site best viewed with NOT ie6 (5, Interesting)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975752)

I noticed many sites seem to have abandoned IE6 support completely. (Using ie 6 and 7 in virtualized XP for testing stuff)

This is how it should be. No CSS hacks, just IE6 users seeing the bugs that arise through their usage of the browser.
And for corporate users who HAVE to use ie6, for the nicest value of "they can fuck off"; they can fuck off.

IE6 no more (2, Interesting)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975794)

http://www.ie6nomore.com/ [ie6nomore.com]
Cure the pox. 'nuff said.

Re:IE6 no more (5, Funny)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976052)

Re:IE6 no more (1)

muffen (321442) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976500)

Like the comments on that page.

IE6 is the only website browser that should be around.
I don't know what all this buzz is about that Firefork website viewer thing, or that Oprah browser.
I knew she did a talk show and all but web browsers? Get off my interwebs!"

Seriously considering this as my next signature.
"Trying to get your website to work correctly in IE6 is like a puzzle game! Challenging and fun!"

Re:This site best viewed with NOT ie6 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976240)

That's what I did - though my site is merely a drop in the ocean. Even getting CSS to work properly in IE7 was a bitch. For IE 6, I now have a nice message courtesy of killie6.com

Woooo! (0)

Queen Mab (1670334) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975770)

Soon, the 'Fox really WILL have the world in its fuzzy embrace.

Net Applications? Slashdot! (4, Interesting)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975772)

Looks like Firefox is dominating Ars. I'm more interested in slashdot browser share percentages, though.

Oh great and benevolent admins, please gift us with your knowledge!...

Re:Net Applications? Slashdot! (2, Interesting)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975958)

I have posted this [glitch.tl] on /. a few times in the past so...


$ grep -v 10.1.1. access_log.* | grep access_point_names | cut -d" " -f12- | grep Linux | wc -l
          180
$ grep -v 10.1.1. access_log.* | grep access_point_names | cut -d" " -f12- | grep Windows | wc -l
          331
$ grep -v 10.1.1. access_log.* | grep access_point_names | cut -d" " -f12- | grep Macintosh | wc -l
            83

Hoping for Windows 7's success... (5, Interesting)

stressclq (881842) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975790)

What this article tells me is that a quarter of the internet users are still using a web browser that was released on August 27, 2001. From a peak market share of %95, it has only come down to %23 in eight years (and change). This survival is against massive "IE6 must die" campaigns, introduction of fairly decent, and standards compliant (comparatively) browsers such as Firefox, Chrome the ever improving Safari and the somehow still surviving gem named Opera.

I was hoping that the rise of social applications like Facebook, Youtube, Digg and popular business applications such as the ones made by 37signals would put an end, a final nail in the coffin if you like, to this monster from the digital stone age.

But obviously I was, surely together with a whole bunch of other fellow /.'ers, wrong. Obviously, the failure of adaptation of Vista played some role in this outcome. But seeing that building a better (faster, compliant, etc.) browser is not the answer, I'm now genuinely hoping that Windows 7 will massively succeed so that we can put an end to this abomination.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (1)

TrancePhreak (576593) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975888)

I also saw it a bit as people who advocated staying away from Vista were also likely to be talking to people who probably haven't updated their browser.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (1)

should_be_linear (779431) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976084)

As far as JavaScript performance is concerned (increasingly important on the modern websites), moving from IE6 to IE8 is like moving from Segway to Bicycle.... on the highway.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (2, Interesting)

nmg196 (184961) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976092)

Unfortunately many/most people do not use social networking sites, and if they do, they don't necessarily have friends who care about browser versions. Any IE6 must die campaign should be supported by the actual websites themselves, telling users they need to upgrade directly on the page.

What would be good is a small bit of script people can embed in their page, which tells IE 6 users to upgrade to something more recent by outputting a bar above the top of the page which tells them what to do. Kind of like the bar that appears on YouTube if you look at it in IE 6. I've found one or two such scripts on the net but I won't use any which don't endorse IE 8 as an acceptable upgrade to IE 6 as I believe it's a worthy replacement and users should have a choice of ALL major browsers when prompted to upgrade. Many sites are simply trying to force users to upgrade to Firefox or Opera. Many users will not do this just because both of those browsers have stupid names (who the hell thought "Opera" was a good name for a modern web browser? Firefox isn't much better and my parents think it sounds like a children's toy and refuse to click the icon).

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976446)

Unfortunately many/most people do not use social networking sites

o_O

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (1)

maglor_83 (856254) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976108)

It didn't have 95% market share when it was released.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976130)

I was hoping that the rise of social applications like Facebook, Youtube, Digg and popular business applications such as the ones made by 37signals would put an end, a final nail in the coffin

if facebook implemented a "you are using an outdated browser" banner, I guaran-freaking-tee that the percentage would drop dramatically.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976308)

Actually, I was hoping more for Microsoft to finally stop shipping a version of a browser with the operating system by default. Apart from the legal issues that rightfully arise with this illegal tying, it's also hampering the upgrade cycle of IE across its market share. I mean come on, it's absolutely hilarious that you would be hoping for people to upgrade their Operating System so they could inevitably get a somewhat modern browser. Choice of browser at first launch (something like windows 7 E) would mitigate that problem and get Microsoft out of illegal issues.

Better yet, create repositories with standard and fair guidelines on how to get your software in them, like linux or apple (app store). Central package management would also solve the problem of having an updater for every application installed. It would get lawmakers off microsoft's ass plus it would be friendlier for users imho.

But hey, whatever.

Re:Hoping for Windows 7's success... (1)

Antiocheian (859870) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976372)

I still use IE6 in the very few cases I have to use an internet explorer browser. That amounts to less than 0.01% of my browsing; all sites that require IE to work are compatible to IE6 so no reason to upgrade because I don't use it for anything else.

As an additional bonus I get the pleasure of knowing that I am forcing web designers to do extra work to support legacy. That means more people needed in IT.

See my point?

Ie6 is the new amish (2, Interesting)

Ryunosuke (576755) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975840)

My job uses WinXp Pro, Ie6, and Office 2003. AND we use an app called QAD in a dos box. It's nice to be in a minority, So I can feel special.

I 3 IE6. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29975842)

It works for most things.

I can't upgrade to IE7 without installing SP2. I've tried I think installing SP2, but it caused problems, let alone I found out some software doesn't even work with SP3. (Found out by trying to run said software on a fresh SP3 machine.)

Plus, running IE6 on my machine can provide for potentially interesting conversations if it ever comes up.

Re:I 3 IE6. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29975972)

I meant to make the heart emoticon in the subject. Hopefully enough time has passed for me to reply to my own post.

Re:I 3 IE6. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29975996)

Plus, running IE6 on my machine can provide for potentially interesting conversations if it ever comes up.

Yes, one of the reasons a lot of techs and webmins wanted it gone.

Re:I 3 IE6. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976050)

I know - I couldn't get AntiVirus2009 to run on SP3!

Re:I 3 IE6. (4, Funny)

maglor_83 (856254) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976122)

Plus, running IE6 on my machine can provide for potentially interesting conversations if it ever comes up.

And I thought I was dull.

Interesting Results (3, Interesting)

AndrewStephens (815287) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975854)

The Ars Technica stats broadly mirrors my own humble blog, I would guess that the techie crowd breaks down 5::2::2::1 Firefox::Safari::IE::Chrome across the board. If this assumption is true, I find it strange that Chrome is not as popular as Safari among the technical people whereas in the general stats they are almost neck-and-neck although less popular overall.

Personally I think that having 4 browsers with significant share (or 6 if you count IE6 and IE7 as separate, incompatible browsers) is very healthy. For a while it looked like it was going to be IE6 stamping on the face of the web forever, but now the population is fragmented web sites have to designed with proper standards in mind.

Re:Interesting Results (1)

Spad (470073) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976046)

Chrome would be my browser of choice were it not for the lack of Adblock, Noscript & IETab; I suspect a lot of other techies feel the same way, which is why Chrome has stayed with such a modest share despite early interest in it.

I can't speak for Safari as every time I've tried to use it (On Windows) I've ended up hating it.

Re:Interesting Results (1)

AndrewStephens (815287) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976416)

According to my Google Analytics page, only 4.5% of Safari users were using the Windows version. In some ways I think that is a shame - I like the way Safari renders pages, it does a much better job of smoothing fonts and graphics than the other browsers. Plus it is very quick (although Chrome starts up faster) and the web inspector tools incredibly useful.

But you are right, the first few versions were terrible.

Re:Interesting Results (1)

adavies42 (746183) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976098)

my guess would be that very few mac people use chrome, while people who would otherwise be using safari on windows are using chrome instead due to the absolutely horrible first three or four versions apple released. i think it may be somewhat stable now, but those first few releases crashed so often i started wondering if they'd dug up an engineer from Mac OS 8.5 to work on the thing.

The numbers (5, Informative)

Stan Vassilev (939229) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975866)

What they mean is, all versions of Firefox put together (2, 3, 3.5) have surpassed one version of Internet Explorer (6), the oldest one. If you look only at oldest versions, only newer versions, or all versions together, IE has a solid lead over Firefox in all three categories. I'm not sure about the significance of this, as IE6 being at over 23% share, most sites still to support it for the foreseeable future.

Re:The numbers (2, Interesting)

ErroneousBee (611028) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976006)

Or looking at it another way, Microsoft appears to be unable to convert its existing userbase to new customers, even for its free offerings.

Re:The numbers (4, Insightful)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976066)

What's most interesting about IE's market share is that version 6 (this oldest one indeed) is actually the most used version of Internet Explorer. Both version 7 (released 3 years ago) and version 8 (released about half a year ago) have not caught on enough to overtake IE6's position as the number one browser out there in sheer market share.

These figures are unlike all other browsers, where the more recent versions have way more market share than the older ones. The usage of Firefox 1 and 2 for example is virtually nothing, while 3.5 is the most popular version. So "all versions of Firefox" actually mean "mostly Firefox 3.5, a bit Firefox 3 and really nothing else", while "all of Internet Explorer" means "Mostly IE6, some IE7 and some IE8".

You are absolutely right that all versions combined, IE is still very dominant, but IE-users are way less inclined to upgrade to more recent versions. Just like Windows XP is still the most popular version of Windows. I wouldn't be surprised to see the same thing with Microsoft Office. Microsoft just doesn't seem to be able to sell their latest products anymore. This is why it quite significant that Firefox with it's latest product is able to have more market share than Microsoft with it's old version, because the old versions of Microsoft products are the relevant ones.

Re:The numbers (1)

ILongForDarkness (1134931) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976332)

I think what has done MS in is they did some fairly major user facing changes in all their main product offerings. The ribbon in Office, the look and tabs of IE 7-8, the gui, layout of stuff and UAC in Vista etc. People just pretty much said can't I do that with IE 6, Office 2003, XP and people said yeah you can but IE8 Office 2007 and Vista/Win 7 are so much prettier. This was followed by "who cares", and at least in business with "so I'm going to spend all this money and retrain staff and redevelop internal stuff why?".

Re:The numbers (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976254)

What they mean is, all versions of Firefox put together (2, 3, 3.5) have surpassed one version of Internet Explorer (6), the oldest one.

It's also something that varies by region. Looking at browser versions in Europe, Firefox 3 is on the heels of IE 7, and well ahead of IE 6, which is then followed by Opera 9.6 and Firefox 2. Safari, Chrome, and Opera 9.2 are well behind. Firefox 3.0 and 3.5 are not differentiated, nor are sub-versions of IE 6. Opera 10 and IE 8 do not show yet - they are probably bundled in the "others" category. http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser_version-eu-monthly-200902-200902-bar [statcounter.com]

Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (5, Funny)

Tomsk70 (984457) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975880)

Next we'll be seeing the revelation that Linux has overtaken Windows 98. Or something.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29975910)

Haven't been paying attention lately, huh? If you need it spelled out: yes, unfortunately it is big news. Better free browsers have been available for a long time but a lot of people don't care. They will complain bitterly when a site doesn't work though.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (2, Interesting)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976102)

They will complain bitterly when a site doesn't work though.

I found a solution to that problem a couple of years back. When I first put OpenPisteMap [openpistemap.org] online, I got a lot of complaints from people that it didn't work in IE6. I don't have any Windows machines and I'm not about to buy and install Windows to test it in an 8 year old browser. So I added a note to the website that IE6 users see that basically says "I know it doesn't work in IE6 - if you can fix it, send me a patch". The complaints suddenly stopped. I didn't get sent any patches either, so I guess the IE6 complainers decided that supporting a crappy outdated browser wasn't worth their time either...

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976532)

I'm guessing that the intersection of "IE6 users" and "People capable of patching websites into compliance with IE6" is fairly small and (perhaps more importantly) is largely composed of people who have to do that for their day job and don't even want to think about it on their own time.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975986)

Next we'll be seeing the revelation that Linux has overtaken Windows 98.

Well, has it? I know Win98 users are few and far between, but the Linux _desktop_ marketshare is tiny, too.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976082)

It is quite relevant, because IE6 is actually the most used browser in the world. Despite the release of newer versions of Internet Explorer, none of them have caught on enough to change that situation.

This is radically different with all other browsers, where the lastest versions are also the most popular versions of the product.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (1)

Tomsk70 (984457) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976408)

The most recent article I've seen about this (from two months ago) put IE6 at 21%, and IE7 at 25% - I'd be astonished at those statistics being the same now, especially with IE8 (and now Win7) having been out for a while too. Still, even going on those old figures, IE7 and 8 combined make up 36%, so I'm not sure why you think they haven't caught on.

Not that web developers will take any notice of IE users still outnumbering FF users by over 3 to 1, since they all want to pretend that developing for FF first won't create any problems. In fact, last time I pointed out that this would simply create a second browser war where the users would lose out in order to make the dev geeks happy, I got marked down for trolling. FF may be technically better, but I've yet to see a single machine (now at 150) where the user has password-protected their password list. That alone spells disaster...

I have also yet to work for a company or individual (I contract in Europe) that still runs IE6 on *anything*, hell even my in-laws have upgraded - so it does leave me wondering how they arrive at these figures in the first place.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976184)

Don't count out the Windows 95 users. Although, to be fair, I can't call myself that until I find an AC adapter. I can't imagine what would happen if I managed to get it onto the net.

Re:Errr....people updating a free browser is news? (1)

Technician (215283) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976264)

Don't count out the Windows 95 users. Although, to be fair, I can't call myself that until I find an AC adapter. I can't imagine what would happen if I managed to get it onto the net.

It is becoming safer. I forgot where I saw it, but much of the bugs out there target newer versions of Windows and many don't function on Windows 98.

Does that mean... ? (1)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976288)

Next we'll be seeing the revelation that Linux has overtaken Windows 98. Or something.

Does that mean 2008 was the year of Windows 98 on the desktop?

In other news ... (1)

wye43 (769759) | more than 4 years ago | (#29975974)

Firefox also passed IE5, and IE4 ...

Re:In other news ... (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976110)

Firefox has already passed all other versions of Internet Explorer, except until very recently, IE6.

Re:In other news ... (1)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976114)

A few years ago, I would've considered "$free_browser gets bigger market share than IE6" to be a great thing. These days it just upsets me to think that so many people are still using IE6...

Re:In other news ... (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976182)

But then again, the browser market is quite different now than it was a few years ago, because large corporations like Google and Apple have hit the scene and Opera became an actual free browser. So while IE6 market share has been declining for years, they haven't all switched to the same product. There used to be only two or three major browsers out there, but in these days you can be the biggest player out there by having a little over 20% market share.

IE6 used to be the biggest browser out there until last month, but actually the vast majority of the surfers were using something else already.

Problems are still corporate users and non-techies (4, Insightful)

biscuitlover (1306893) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976030)

This is great, but IE6 is still going to stick around for years. The reasons - as have been widely discussed on these pages before - are:

  • Large corporations can't be bothered with the cost and hassle of updating thousands of machines when IE6 is supposedly 'good enough' and doesn't break internal applications which were built on top of its many quirks.
  • Many, many home users don't know what a browser is or don't realise that there are alternatives. These people aren't stupid (well, most of them anyway) - they just don't care enough about tech to know the options.

Neither of these situations will change any time soon. Gradual adoption of Windows 7 will certainly help in the second case, but the first one is dependent entirely on enterprise-level IT departments creating lots of work (and therefore cost) for themselves when senior management can't see any tangible benefit... And how soon do you think that will happen?

Re:Problems are still corporate users and non-tech (2, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976600)

What you say is true. However, the reason we care about browser market shares isn't (in general) evangelical fervor; but concern for web development, features used by web sites, HTML5 vs. Flash, etc, etc. For that reason, what we really care about is not "How many people are using browser X vs. browser Y?" but "How much influence on web development/deployment of new web technologies does browser X or browser Y have?"

Large corporate installations are highly change averse; but they also tend to be unsupportive of non work related web activity. The poor people who code corporate intranet portals will have to support those IE6 users until the end of time; but a fair few of them can't even ping facebook through the corporate firewall, much less make it into the browser stats.

I suspect that the total extinction of IE6 could take years to decades; but that its survival will be extremely uneven, and largely irrelevant outside of large corporate legacy applications. Nontechie home users may never upgrade; but computers don't last forever and you already have to go out of your way to buy a computer with IE6 on it today. That won't get any easier as time passes.

In other news (4, Funny)

imakemusic (1164993) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976038)

Tortoise walks past dead Hare.

Film at 11.

this is go4tsex (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976040)

hot on the heels of These early percent of thie *BSD is dying and its

Wildly different at work (2, Informative)

Imsdal (930595) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976056)

Here are the stats for the company web site for the company I work for. It's a smallish Nordic company, and it's a safe bet that 95% of all visits are from other people at work. (I have no proof of that figure, obviously, but trust me when I say that looking at our site isn't something people do on their free time.)

MS Internet Explorer 2920837 96 %
Unknown 56869 1.8 %
Wget 32632 1 %
Firefox 18582 0.6 %
Safari 4934 0.1 %
Opera 2970 0 %
Mozilla 2532 0 %
LibWWW 148 0 %
Netscape 92 0 %
Nokia Browser (PDA/Phone browser) 12 0 %
Others 7 0 %

These figures are just incredibly different from those in TFA. Figures are page hits for the month of November, i.e. a little more than three days, but the percentages always look like this.

Re:Wildly different at work (2, Informative)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976170)

I'm pretty sure that our internal websites are almost 100% IE, but that's because using Sharepoint in anything but IE is a world of hurt.

Not that using Sharepoint from IE is exactly pleasant, but damn.

Re:Wildly different at work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976252)

I'm trying to not jump to conclusions but... Your figures are so far from anything I see in my work that I'm guessing an important part of your site does not work in any other browser and people using them just aren't coming to your site.

First, Nordic countries are one of the most "receptive" places for alternative browsers -- this is shown in all stats I've seen.

I was thinking that maybe the employers of your visitors are all somehow similar (have very tightly controlled environments), but that doesn't explain wget getting more hits than all alternative browsers together! In fact all alternative browsers combined are easily below 1%... I'm going to guess your site somehow requires IE, or your clientele is very "select".

Re:Wildly different at work (1)

Imsdal (930595) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976584)

Quite a lot (or even most?) of our visitors are big industrial companies, utilities, government agencies etc. It is quite accurate to describe them as working in tightly controlled environments.

I know for a fact that the website does work in FF, as that is what I use. The relatively high number of Wgets is from automated "screen scrapers" and similar applications. We have quite a lot of data that some organizations probably get this way. Also, we use awstats for the stats, but I can't guarantee that it is quite updated. Thus, I would guess that "Unknown" is almost 0% IE.

I know this data is a complete outlier, that's why I thought it was moderately interesting. What it seems to indicate is that in locked down environemnts, non-IE browsers (and, for that matter, non-Windows desktops) are almost nonexistent.

Bit late? (0)

dandart (1274360) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976134)

It did that ages ago! FF owns the browser share market: http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp [w3schools.com] So many people are trying to kill IE6 right now, inc. Google & Youtube It has really low market share and it hates standards. Make it die!

Bit late? (1, Informative)

dandart (1274360) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976158)

You'll see that it has already done this. http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp [w3schools.com] And there's campaigns to kill IE6 inc. Google & Youtube. IE6 MUST DIE! http://ie6update.com/ [ie6update.com] http://iedeathmarch.org/ [iedeathmarch.org] Hopefully with the release of Karmic people will move away from XP/earlier. But the only thing that will kill it is M$ stop supporting XP! And have notices telling them to upgrade.

Not on my site (4, Informative)

imakemusic (1164993) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976202)

I help run a website for an art gallery/shop - make of that what you will. The stats for our site is quite different:

Firefox (all versions) 42.1%
IE (all versions) 40.1%
Safari 7.8%
Chrome 4.5%

Go firefox!

Win7 or Vista Remarketed... (1)

TheDarAve (513675) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976238)

"(we can only hope that as Windows 7 gains popularity, this trend will reverse)"

Why oh WHY would you even want to hope for that? I think a better thing to hope for would be for Windows XP to lose popularity. Hell, I'd rather see people transition to... *shudder* a mac over Vista Remarketed.

And before I get the "Why don't you try it" or "You're a mac fanboi" crap: My network is 7 linux boxen (2 Cell, 3 SPARC, 2 AMD64) 2 Server 2008 (1 as a workstation, 1 as a DC) 1 Win7 Ultimate, and a hoard (lost count) of Win XP laptops. No macs. No Linux on anything that isn't some form of server.

Re:Win7 or Vista Remarketed... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976432)

Nice how you spent more time bragging up your "network" instead of backing up your bullshit statement. This isn't a dick sizing contest. No one is impressed. You may as well have said that M$ is teh suckzz!!!

Some comparisons... (4, Insightful)

tjstork (137384) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976266)

All users of every version of FireFox taken together use more than one old version of IE.

netbooks (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29976290)

Too bad Firefox is too slow and bloated to use on a netbook. I had to switch to IE for netbook use. Firefox is slow as hell and then it will freeze or crash if you try to do anything demanding like watch youtube or visit google finance. Then when you restart it the thing that says "Oops! Looks like Firefox crashed!" made it freeze up! Useless! I used to believe the hype and think Firefox was better than IE now I see it's bloated crap and IE is the one that's actually fast and light.

I've been collecting stats too... (1)

BigBadBus (653823) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976294)

They're displayed here [paullee.com]

IE6 (4, Informative)

FrostedWheat (172733) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976336)

I decided to collect some stats for the trade services section of my companies website. Our typical customer is *not* technically minded in the least:

MSIE 8.0, 38.4%
MSIE 7.0, 33.8%
Firefox/3.5, 9.5%
MSIE 6.0, 9.1%
Chrome 9, 8.4%
Firefox/3.0, 3.0%
Safari 4, 1.5%

IE 6 is dropping fast, but a very poor showing for Opera and Safari. The OS stats are dominated by Windows XP (62%) and Vista (33%), with OS X and other flavours of Windows taking the remaining few percent. No Linux at all sadly.

Re:IE6 (2, Insightful)

mxh83 (1607017) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976580)

And when was "Chrome 9" released?

Old news (1)

salesgeek (263995) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976498)

My websites and our client's websites have been showing Firefox passing up IE6, IE7, and IE8 combined. IE typically shows around 38%, Firefox shows around 39% and all others (mix of Chrome, Safari, Opera and mobile browsers) make up the difference. It's like it 1997 all over again. I'm kind of excited about the whole thing [blogspot.com] because now the new crop of standards can come to the front faster (SVG, HTML 5, etc...).

It's about time.

Why does anyone care? (0)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 4 years ago | (#29976552)

How is this even news? IE7 has been in the wild for at least 6 months, perhaps a year (I don't use it so I don't know exactly) so of course IE6 market share is going to be dropping. From what I can tell more and more people are migrating to IE7 and it's a reasonably decent browser now. Why is anyone comparing anything, be it Mozilla, Firefox, Opera, or anything else, to IE6 now?

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