USE OF MICROSOFT'S Internet Explorer has taken a nosedive after its market share dropped by over 20 per cent year on year.
This is only semi-surprising given that it has been superseded by Microsoft Edge in Windows 10, or Skynet as it's sometimes known.
However, Edge has claimed only a 4.99 per cent share this month and the combined totals of Microsoft browsers stand at 38.7 per cent, down 21.44 per cent on this time last year.
This isn't just a drop, it's a significant trend. Microsoft had a 55.17 per cent share of the browser market last year, according to Net Applications' Netmarketshare statistics.
So who has gained? Google, by a significant margin. Use of Chrome has jumped to 45.63 per cent from 26.37 per cent this time last year, a leap of 19.26 per cent.
In fact, Chrome is not only the browser with the biggest market share but is the fastest growing and indeed one of only two browsers to have seen growth.
The other, Opera, has taken 1.73 per cent of the market, up 0.5 per cent year on year. But Opera is Chromium-based and can be made to behave more or less like Chrome with a bit of tinkering.
There are lots of reasons why people might be swapping. Edge's lack of extensions has made it seem incredibly primitive at launch, and trust in Microsoft is in short supply following Updategate, but we reckon the biggest influencer is mobile.
These figures are for desktop browsers, but it's fairly well-received wisdom that most people have multiple devices now. We already know that the vast majority of them run Android, where the default browser is Chrome.
It follows, therefore, that the advantages of syncing between accounts on mobile and desktop are likely to drive people towards a Google browser.
Firefox, meanwhile, once seen as the great open source hope for the internet, has fallen on relatively hard times, dropping to 8.91 per cent, a fall of 2.97 per cent on the year. We'd speculate that its failure to be a default browser on anything, coupled with its switch to Yahoo as default search engine, may have a bearing on this.
Meanwhile, Edge extensions are coming and Internet Explorer is eventually going to whither, but Microsoft's abject failure to cut it in the mobile phone market means that this trend is very likely to continue. Not to mention the fact that Chrome is way, way faster. µ
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