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IE Drops Below 30% Market Share for First Time in 15 Years

By - Source: StatCounter | B 44 comments

Microsoft recently complained about distorted web statistics that put Chrome at an advantage over its own Internet Explorer.

While it has been fairly clear that StatCounter is counting some page views it should not count for calculating the browser's market share, it is apparent that the overall trend of browser market share is going upwards for Chrome, while IE is the only browser out there that is losing market share at a rapid pace.

Last weekend, IE dropped for the first time on StatCounter's charts and, according to my own personal records, is for the first time in 15 years below 30 percent market share. Last Sunday, the browser held 29.40 percent on StatCounter's charts, while Chrome climbed to a new record of 34.55 percent. Firefox, Safari and Opera are showing flat market share developments this month, while IE is down dramatically. On average, IE had just 32.70 percent share, followed by Chrome with 32.05 percent, Firefox with 25.32 percent, Safari with 7.16 percent and Opera with 1.75 percent.

Chrome appears to be on track to exceed IE's market share in the longer term by June. The takeaway is, of course, not the absolute number, but the indication that IE is currently the only browser that cannot hold onto its user base.

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Top Comments
  • 17 Hide
    willard , May 16, 2012 4:14 PM
    IE has come a long way, but I think it's a case of "damage done" after Microsoft failed to make any significant improvements for the better part of a decade, and allowed major security problems to go unaddressed for just as long.

    The IE brand is just irreparably tarnished.
  • 15 Hide
    Nakal , May 16, 2012 4:20 PM
    You have to realize, many enterprise environments use IE as their standard browser. We still have a small few still on IE6 because of some legacy applications written by the Federal Government or now defunct private entity requires it. And the cost to replace is prohibitive, especially if for all intents and purposes, it still works.
  • 14 Hide
    ubercake , May 16, 2012 4:40 PM
    Google has ways of getting their browser installed on user machines without them knowing it (ie default checkbox when installing java or some other software). Most people are ignorant to the fact they are opening a different browser altogether once that happens.
Other Comments
  • 11 Hide
    spookyman , May 16, 2012 4:07 PM
    Well maybe if it didn't suck so much more people would use IE.
  • 3 Hide
    whimseh , May 16, 2012 4:09 PM
    Can't believe it was even near 30% in the first place. Who uses IE? Only old people and the technologically impaired.
  • 5 Hide
    classzero , May 16, 2012 4:11 PM
    Death to IE. It's the only non cross-platform browser left.
  • 17 Hide
    willard , May 16, 2012 4:14 PM
    IE has come a long way, but I think it's a case of "damage done" after Microsoft failed to make any significant improvements for the better part of a decade, and allowed major security problems to go unaddressed for just as long.

    The IE brand is just irreparably tarnished.
  • 9 Hide
    marksatterfield , May 16, 2012 4:17 PM
    There are a number of sites that do not render correctly on Chrome... unfortunately. So using IE (or Firefox) is a "must" to use those sites. Chrome still has a way to go.

    http://www.marksatterfield.com
  • 15 Hide
    Nakal , May 16, 2012 4:20 PM
    You have to realize, many enterprise environments use IE as their standard browser. We still have a small few still on IE6 because of some legacy applications written by the Federal Government or now defunct private entity requires it. And the cost to replace is prohibitive, especially if for all intents and purposes, it still works.
  • 9 Hide
    BringMeAnother , May 16, 2012 4:29 PM
    whimsehCan't believe it was even near 30% in the first place. Who uses IE? Only old people and the technologically impaired.

    Never underestimate the power of status quo. People uses IE because it doesn't require them to change.
  • 14 Hide
    ubercake , May 16, 2012 4:40 PM
    Google has ways of getting their browser installed on user machines without them knowing it (ie default checkbox when installing java or some other software). Most people are ignorant to the fact they are opening a different browser altogether once that happens.
  • -5 Hide
    -Jackson , May 16, 2012 4:45 PM
    ubercakeGoogle has ways of getting their browser installed on user machines without them knowing it (ie default checkbox when installing java or some other software). Most people are ignorant to the fact they are opening a different browser altogether once that happens.

    Psh, it's just like people who don't read the small print on contracts :lol: 
    But you know, even if they're not aware, I don't see what's so bad about it; I mean, who doesn't love Chrome? ;) 
  • 7 Hide
    torbendalum , May 16, 2012 4:47 PM
    The thing about IE is that there are still a lot of business applications that run IE only, bad coding in my mind, on my work computer I run ubuntu but I'm still forced to have a VBox win7 to be able to do my work. My favorite browser is chrome but IE is the only browser out there that will run all the stuff out there. I really hope web developers will start making all their stuff browser independent.
  • 1 Hide
    mesab66 , May 16, 2012 4:56 PM
    brindmeanother ......True, True
  • 3 Hide
    Jerom , May 16, 2012 5:17 PM
    I don't like Chrome for all the information it collects. I am a privater person like that but I can't deny that it has many technological advantages over IE. However IE is much more memory efficient and thus I still use it on my netbook, it only has 2GB of RAM and while running windows 7, antivirus and watching 30+ minute video I am pretty much using it all. And we all know that using paging file is horrid idea.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , May 16, 2012 5:20 PM
    Main reason of the *rapid* decline of IE is unavailability of IE9 on oldes systems. I would like to see how it looks on newer machines (win7) and old (xp). This would answer why. I myself use mainly Chrome, but sometimes it misbehaves (depends on the site of course - often problems with some older CMS-es) and I use IE or FF which are usually OK - i.e. good or "good enough" (Safari sucks, don't like Opera).
  • 1 Hide
    Northwestern , May 16, 2012 5:21 PM
    Microsoft let it rot for a good six years once they buried Netscape which gave virus developers a chance to hone their skills on the Windows platform. This discourages users away after these viruses were found to be using IE as an easy way into your computer.

    While this was happening, the Windows team was too busy pouring money and wasted time into Longhorn to even bother fixing IE 6 or keeping up with Web Standards. It was a screwed situation. Microsoft not only lost out on Vista, but lost their browser share. Only since IE 9 has Microsoft finally decided to get itself together and create a useful browser that is somewhat good. Sadly, it has come too late.
  • -3 Hide
    NiPPonD3nZ0 , May 16, 2012 5:26 PM
    Of course its loosing margins... every piece of crapware advertised "for free" and avaiable for download on the WWW it's got an "offer" of a "faster web browser"... load of crap, if you want a fast browsing experience, keep off porn, church and pirate web sites, dont klick every add on ANY page and get a faster internet connection...
    I use IE since version 3 on Windows 3.11 and it works has it should. it displays webpages, and its only has fast as my internet connection allows it to be. get a life, you wont download faster bcause your browser...
    i tried every other browser and if i needed to change, it would be to Opera, not chrome (childish interface and bad layout), or firefox (it keeps on crashing and a update cycle ridiculous that prooves its a buggy piece of software).

    IE 9 its stable and not ridiculously childish. IT'S A MAN'S BROWSER, you kids use whatever.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , May 16, 2012 5:32 PM
    And if you look at other data, it's still showing around 50%
    http://www.techspot.com/news/46859-ie-market-share-slips-facebook-pulls-support-for-ie7.html
  • 1 Hide
    eddieroolz , May 16, 2012 5:35 PM
    IE9 doesn't suck but the damage to the reputation has been done already by years of inaction by Microsoft. Add to this Google and Apple users' religious loyalty and Firefox's wide appeal, and it doesn't look like IE is going to be on an upsurge anytime soon.
  • -1 Hide
    xerroz , May 16, 2012 5:36 PM
    ubercakeGoogle has ways of getting their browser installed on user machines without them knowing it (ie default checkbox when installing java or some other software). Most people are ignorant to the fact they are opening a different browser altogether once that happens.

    Exactly. That's the major reason why Chrome has gained so much market so fast, because the average user (the majority) has gotten Chrome installed by some random software and out of the blue they started using it but don't actually care or know that there's a better alternative (Firefox) - at least that's what happened with those I questioned. Firefox rightfully gained its following from enthusiasts and average users are alike. Long live Firefox
  • -1 Hide
    Northwestern , May 16, 2012 5:41 PM
    WhoComesUpWithThisCrapAnd if you look at other data, it's still showing around 50%http://www.techspot.com/news/46859 [...] r-ie7.html

    Yeah, from 2011.
  • 1 Hide
    tntom , May 16, 2012 5:44 PM
    IE just feels outdated and less comfortable to me. It is probably just my perception though. Between FF4 to FF9 I used Chrome more because it performed better and was very stable but after FF9 I switched because FF became really rock solid and not a single crash for me. Chrome does perform faster than FF on my WinXP machine only. Lately Chrome has been a little more unstable allowing a single tab crashing the whole browser especially with Flash while it is not happening under FF. I love choice and competition!
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