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02 Jun 12 Google: Chrome's No. 1 (or 2) worldwide


The global browser numbers race between Chrome and Internet Explorer remains highly contested, but Google has sent the strongest signal yet that Chrome holds the crown as the Web browser leader.

Google Chrome senior vice president Sundar Pichai, speaking at D10, started off noting Chrome’s growth:

“Chrome grew roughly 300 percent last year — we have hundreds of millions of active users. We have many ways of looking at it. You can argue about the data, but in general I think we have gained substantial mindshare since we’ve launched the product.”

Amid the hedging, he went on (emphasis mine)::

“I think it’s fair to say that we are number one or number two in all countries in the world. It’s fair to say that roughly a third of people are using Chrome; I think it’s much more than a third in the consumer space. Most users in enterprise use IE because it takes a long time for that space to upgrade.”

Pichai added:

“There are places where our share is over 50 percent today. I think the speed of Chrome is much more notable when you have a slow connection.”

What could be seen as a bold statement could also be seen as a Dewey victory. Having said that, only Google knows exactly how many downloads it’s had for Chrome, but downloads do not equal installs or active use.

Plus, at least one browser counter suggests Chrome really is in the lead.

StatCounter said Chrome overtook Internet Explorer in May, even after it took into account a pre-rendering adjustment. The research firm said the move did not have any “significant” impact on its statistics.

It currently sees Internet Explorer at 32.12 percent, with Chrome a fraction ahead at 32.43 percent.

It’s also worth noting that it is not the first time Chrome has jumped ahead of Internet Explorer, according to the analytics firm. Chrome was the “world’s top browser” for a single day on March 18. It’s likely the figure jumped on the Sunday because the vast majority were at home and not at the office, where Internet Explorer still dominates the work environment.

But it doesn’t mean Internet Explorer can’t recoup its losses and claw back the market share it’s losing.

On the flip side, Net Applications pegs Internet Explorer at 54 percent with
Firefox ahead of Chrome at 19.7 percent and 19.6 percent respectively.

Microsoft was unavailable for comment at the time of writing.

Transcript courtesy of Engadget.

See also from D10:
• Google’s Pichai predicts Chrome OS, Android convergence
• Google execs on piracy: It’s not a technical problem

This story originally appeared at ZDNet’s Between the Lines under the headline “Google says Chrome is slamming IE’s market share.”

Article source: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57445256-93/google-chromes-no-1-or-2-worldwide/?part=rss&subj=news&tag=2547-1_3-0-20

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02 Jun 12 Chrome steals second place from Firefox in browser wars


Editor’s Note: This story is excerpted from Computerworld. For more Mac coverage, visit Computerworld’s Macintosh Knowledge Center.


  • Apple’s Safari grows faster than Chrome in July
  • Chrome, Safari reach record browser share highs


  • Internet Explorer on pace to drop below 50-percent share by 2011

  • Chrome again beats Firefox in browser gain race

  • Firefox 4 tops 100 million downloads, fails to move share

  • Opera is Facebook’s best browser play

Google’s Chrome passed Mozilla’s Firefox in May to become the world’s second-most-popular browser, according to data released by Web analytics company Net Applications.

The California-based firm was the second major metric company to track Chrome’s run to second. In November 2011, Irish measurement vendor StatCounter said Chrome had passed Firefox in its estimates.

Net Applications’ spot swapping came as a surprise: Earlier projections by Computerworld had pointed to a delay in Chrome’s capture of second place, perhaps to as late as August.

But in May, Chrome gained 1.3 percentage points, more than double its average increase over the last 12 months, to climb to 20.2%, while Firefox lost six-tenths of a point to fall to 19.6%.

Last month was the first time that Chrome cracked the 20% mark—the browser debuted in September 2008—and the first time that Firefox fell under that number in Net Applications’ data since October of the same year.

Firefox, backed by open-source developer Mozilla, peaked at just over 25% in April 2010, and has been on a slow-but-steady decline in usage share since then.

For Microsoft, May was a return to a more traditional pattern: Internet Explorer (IE) lost half a percentage point to end the month at 53.6%. May’s decline put an end to the two-month-in-a-row growth IE had experienced, and returned the browser to near the share it owned last March.

Even so, IE has gained share in three of the first five months of 2012.

Within the IE family, IE9 continued its ascent, adding one percentage point to account for 16.9% of all browsers on all operating systems. IE8 also was up, boosting its share by nearly half a point to 26.7%.

The other editions—2006’s IE7 and the 11-year-old IE6—lost share in May. IE6, the version Microsoft wants to disappear, lost a point last month, falling to 6.1%, a record low in Net Applications’ tracking. IE7 shed seven-tenths of a percentage point to drop to 3.4%, also a record.

While the shift toward IE9 can be attributed to the increasing uptake of Windows 7, IE8’s recent rebound is harder to explain. IE8 has grown its share in four of the first five months of the year compared to only two such months during all of 2011.

The shift toward IE8 and the above-average declines of both IE6 and IE7 so far this year may be due to Microsoft’s new practice of automatically upgrading older versions. Late last year, the company said it would begin to silently force Windows to upgrade IE to the newest-possible edition, ending a tradition of asking users’ permission for such moves.

In January, Microsoft started upgrading some PCs running Windows XP from IE6 or IE7 to IE8, and swapping IE9 for IE7 or IE8 on Vista and Windows 7.

The process started in Australia and Brazil, and is to gradually roll out worldwide this year. Microsoft has declined to provide the names of countries where it has switched on the silent IE upgrades.

Apple’s Safari lost two-tenths of a point last month to end at 4.6%, while Opera Software’s Opera was flat at 1.6%.

StatCounter’s calculations, however, were considerably different than Net Applications’, as they tend to be.

Net Applications had IE falling by almost two percentage points to 32.1%, while Chrome grew by 1.2 percentage points to 32.4%, making good on reports throughout May that showed Chrome would kick IE out of first place. Firefox, said StatCounter, climbed to 25.6%, while Safari and Opera didn’t budge, accounting for shares of 7.1% and 1.7%, respectively.

Net Applications calculates browser usage share with data obtained from more than 160 million unique visitors who browse 40,000 websites that the company monitors. More browser share figures can be found on the company’s site.


See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com.

Article source: http://www.macworld.com/article/1167053/chrome_steals_second_place_from_firefox_in_browser_wars.html

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02 Jun 12 Chrome steals second from Firefox in browser wars


Computerworld - Web analytics company Net Applications today changed its May numbers from those posted overnight, and now has Google’s Chrome still in third place, albeit barely behind Mozilla’s Firefox.

Earlier today, the California-based firm had published data that showed Chrome had passed Firefox for the first time, fueled by an increase of 1.3 percentage points to 20.2%. Meanwhile, Net Applications’ preliminary numbers had Firefox falling six-tenths of a point to 19.6%.

The spot swapping came as a surprise: Earlier projections by Computerworld had pointed to a delay in Chrome’s capture of second place, perhaps to as late as August.

Later Friday, Net Applications revised its numbers.

According to the company, Chrome actually accounted for 19.6% of all browsers used in May, an increase of seven-tenths of a point. Firefox’s revised share of 19.7% was a half-point lower than the previous month.

It was the first time that Firefox fell under the 20% mark in Net Applications’ tracking since October 2008.

But even though Net Applications modified its opening browser share numbers to keep Firefox in second, the writing is clearly on the wall: By all trends in the vendor’s data, Chrome will slip by Firefox and actually snare second place some time this month.

If Firefox’s losses remain on the tempo of the last 12 months, Mozilla’s browser share will have shrunk to about 18% by the end of 2012, while Chrome’s will have climbed above 23%.

Net Applications was, if only for several hours, the second major metric company to track Chrome’s run to second. In November 2011, Irish measurement vendor StatCounter said Chrome had passed Firefox in its estimates.

May was flat for Microsoft in Net Applications’ new numbers, although overnight the data had pointed to a half-point loss by Internet Explorer (IE) to end the month at 53.6%. After Net Applications’ revisions, IE accounted for 54.1% of all browsers used worldwide last month, essentially the same as in April.

Within the IE family, IE9 continued its ascent, adding 1.1 percentage points to account for 17% of all browsers on all operating systems. IE8 also posted positive, boosting its share by seven-tenths of point to 26.9%.

The other editions — 2006′s IE7 and the 11-year-old IE6 — lost share in May. IE6, the version Microsoft wants to disappear, lost nearly a point, falling to 6.2%, a record low in Net Applications’ tracking. IE7 shed seven-tenths of a percentage point to drop to 3.4%, also a record.

While the shift toward IE9 can be attributed to the increasing uptake of Windows 7, IE8′s recent rebound is harder to explain. The latter browser has grown its share in four of the first five months of the year compared to only two such months during all of 2011.

Article source: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9227657/Chrome_steals_second_from_Firefox_in_browser_wars

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01 Jun 12 Chrome or IE? Who Won the May Browser Wars?


Web browsers continued to play a game of thrones last month, but which one took the Internet crown?

Who is king seems up for debate: StatCounter placed Google Chrome at the top of the heap in May, the first time the browser dominated for a full calendar month. Net Applications, however, still had IE as the top browser, followed by Firefox and Chrome.

For May, StatCounter’s data showed more than 15 billion Internet page views — Chrome took 32.43 percent of the worldwide market, compared to 32.12 percent for IE, and 25.55 percent for Firefox.

But Chrome is ringing in June with a barely there global edge on IE, according to StatCounter, which reported that a 0.6 percent switch from IE to Firefox helped push Chrome into first place. May’s Chrome update to the new, stable version of the Google browser is likely a contributing factor, as well.

Net Applications, meanwhile, showed Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome neck-and-neck, separated for second and third places, respectively, by 0.13 percent. IE still reigned supreme at 54.05 percent global market share, according to the site.

In the U.S., Net Applications calculated the Microsoft browser at 56.13 percent for May, while Firefox and Chrome lagged behind with 16.78 percent and 14.48 percent, respectively.

The vast difference in the numbers from Net Applications and StatCounter are primarily due to the use of unique visitors instead of page views, Net Applications spokesman Vince Vizzaccaro wrote in an email.

He indicated that country-level weighting is likely the biggest factor, adding that IE has a very strong market share in the U.S. and China, which carry the largest bases of Internet users.

The fight between stat counters doesn’t mean much to Google, though.

During the D10 expo, Chrome’s senior vice president, Sundar Pichai, said that the browser grew about 300 percent last year, with “hundreds of millions of active users,” according to Engadget.

“We have many ways of looking at it,” he said. “You can argue about the data, but in general I think we have gained substantial mindshare since we’ve launched the product.”

For more, see PCMag’s full reviews of IE9 (slideshow below), Chrome 18, and Firefox 12.

For more from Stephanie, follow her on Twitter @smlotPCMag.


View Slideshow
See all (21) slides


Start Installation


About Box


First Look at IE9


Gear Menu


For the top stories in tech, follow us on Twitter at @PCMag.

Article source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2405170,00.asp?kc=PCRSS03069TX1K0001121

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01 Jun 12 Chrome Steals Second From Firefox in Browser Wars


Google’s Chrome passed Mozilla’s Firefox in May to become the world’s second-most-popular browser, according to data released today by Web analytics company Net Applications.

The California-based firm was the second major metric company to track Chrome’s run to second. In November 2011, Irish measurement vendor StatCounter said Chrome had passed Firefox in its estimates.

Net Applications’ spot swapping came as a surprise: Earlier projections by Computerworld had pointed to a delay in Chrome’s capture of second place, perhaps to as late as August.

But in May, Chrome gained 1.3 percentage points, more than double its average increase over the last 12 months, to climb to 20.2%, while Firefox lost six-tenths of a point to fall to 19.6%.

Last month was the first time that Chrome cracked the 20% mark — the browser debuted in September 2008 — and the first time that Firefox fell under that number in Net Applications’ data since October of the same year.

Chrome Steals Second From Firefox in Browser WarsChrome Steals Second From Firefox in Browser WarsFirefox, backed by open-source developer Mozilla, peaked at just over 25% in April 2010, and has been on a slow-but-steady decline in usage share since then.

For Microsoft, May was a return to a more traditional pattern: Internet Explorer (IE) lost half a percentage point to end the month at 53.6%. May’s decline put an end to the two-month-in-a-row growth IE had experienced, and returned the browser to near the share it owned last March.

Even so, IE has gained share in three of the first five months of 2012.

Within the IE family, IE9 continued its ascent, adding one percentage point to account for 16.9% of all browsers on all operating systems. IE8 also was up, boosting its share by nearly half a point to 26.7%.

The other editions — 2006′s IE7 and the 11-year-old IE6 — lost share in May. IE6, the version Microsoft wants to disappear, lost a point last month, falling to 6.1%, a record low in Net Applications’ tracking. IE7 shed seven-tenths of a percentage point to drop to 3.4%, also a record.

While the shift toward IE9 can be attributed to the increasing uptake of Windows 7, IE8′s recent rebound is harder to explain. IE8 has grown its share in four of the first five months of the year compared to only two such months during all of 2011.

The shift toward IE8 and the above-average declines of both IE6 and IE7 so far this year may be due to Microsoft’s new practice of automatically upgrading older versions. Late last year, the company said it would begin to silently force Windows to upgrade IE to the newest-possible edition, ending a tradition of asking users’ permission for such moves.

In January, Microsoft started upgrading some PCs running Windows XP from IE6 or IE7 to IE8, and swapping IE9 for IE7 or IE8 on Vista and Windows 7.

The process started in Australia and Brazil, and is to gradually roll out worldwide this year. Microsoft has declined to provide the names of countries where it has switched on the silent IE upgrades.

Apple‘s Safari lost two-tenths of a point last month to end at 4.6%, while Opera Software’s Opera was flat at 1.6%.

StatCounter’s calculations, however, were considerably different than Net Applications’, as they tend to be.

Net Applications had IE falling by almost two percentage points to 32.1%, while Chrome grew by 1.2 percentage points to 32.4%, making good on reports throughout May that showed Chrome would kick IE out of first place. Firefox, said StatCounter, climbed to 25.6%, while Safari and Opera didn’t budge, accounting for shares of 7.1% and 1.7%, respectively.

Net Applications calculates browser usage share with data obtained from more than 160 million unique visitors who browse 40,000 Web sites that the company monitors. More browser share figures can be found on the company’s site.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg’s RSS feed. His email address is gkeizer@computerworld.com.

See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com.

Read more about browsers in Computerworld’s Browsers Topic Center.

Article source: http://www.pcworld.com/article/256624/chrome_steals_second_from_firefox_in_browser_wars.html

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01 Jun 12 Chrome or IE? Who Won the May Browser Wars?


Web browsers continued to play a game of thrones last month, but which one took the Internet crown?

Who is king seems up for debate: StatCounter placed Google Chrome at the top of the heap in May, the first time the browser dominated for a full calendar month. Net Applications, however, still had IE as the top browser, followed by Firefox and Chrome.

For May, StatCounter’s data showed more than 15 billion Internet page views — Chrome took 32.43 percent of the worldwide market, compared to 32.12 percent for IE, and 25.55 percent for Firefox.

But Chrome is ringing in June with a barely there global edge on IE, according to StatCounter, which reported that a 0.6 percent switch from IE to Firefox helped push Chrome into first place. May’s Chrome update to the new, stable version of the Google browser is likely a contributing factor, as well.

Net Applications, meanwhile, showed Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome neck-and-neck, separated for second and third places, respectively, by 0.13 percent. IE still reigned supreme at 54.05 percent global market share, according to the site.

In the U.S., Net Applications calculated the Microsoft browser at 56.13 percent for May, while Firefox and Chrome lagged behind with 16.78 percent and 14.48 percent, respectively.

The fight between stat counters doesn’t mean much to Google, though.

During the D10 expo, Chrome’s senior vice president, Sundar Pichai, said that the browser grew about 300 percent last year, with “hundreds of millions of active users,” according to Engadget.

“We have many ways of looking at it,” he said. “You can argue about the data, but in general I think we have gained substantial mindshare since we’ve launched the product.”

For more, see PCMag’s full reviews of IE9 (slideshow below), Chrome 18, and Firefox 12.

For more from Stephanie, follow her on Twitter @smlotPCMag.


View Slideshow
See all (21) slides


Start Installation


About Box


First Look at IE9


Gear Menu


For the top stories in tech, follow us on Twitter at @PCMag.

Article source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2405170,00.asp

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31 May 12 Chrome to take world’s top browser spot for May


Computerworld -

Google’s Chrome is about to grab the top browser spot for a full month for the first time from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, data from a Web analytics company showed.

For the month through Monday, Chrome had an average usage share of 32.5%, slightly higher than Internet Explorer’s (IE) 32.1%, according to Irish company StatCounter.

If the remaining three days of May play out as did the previous 28, Chrome will take the browser crown from IE for a full month for the first time since Chrome’s September 2008 launch.

Previously, Chrome had edged IE on weekends, and then earlier this month topped Microsoft’s combined browser usage share for the week ending May 20. That trend continued in the month’s fourth week as Chrome beat IE 32.9% to 31.4% for the seven days ending May 27.

The spread between the two browsers for the fourth week of the month was 67% larger than during the third week, hinting that Chrome continues to gain momentum in the share race.

Other browsers remained steady. Through May 28, Mozilla’s Firefox accounted for 25.5% of all browsers used worldwide, while Apple‘s Safari and Opera Software’s Opera logged in at 7.1% and 1.8%, respectively.

But StatCounter’s numbers are contentious in some quarters.

Rival metrics firm Net Applications, for example, cites data that shows Chrome far behind IE, with April’s numbers spotting Chrome at 18.9% and IE at 54.1%, or almost three times larger. Net Applications does not make its daily share data available to the public, so a direct comparison with StatCounter’s numbers through Monday was not possible.

Although both companies discard Chrome’s pre-rendered pages — those that the browser loads in the background in case the user decides to view them — their methodologies differ significantly. For one thing, StatCounter tallies page views while Net Applications counts unique visitors.

More importantly, Net Applications — but not StatCounter — weights its data by country to account for the lack of Western insight into browsing habits in places like China, where IE is the overwhelming favorite. The result is that Net Applications’ numbers for IE are always much larger, and Chrome’s much smaller, than StatCounter’s.

Not surprisingly, Microsoft has accepted Net Applications’ estimates and rejected StatCounter’s.

The two companies’ numbers for Firefox, Safari and Opera are typically in the same ballpark. In April, 4.7 percentage points separated the numbers for Firefox, 2.3 points for Safari and just one-tenth of a percentage point for Opera.

The differences between their shares for IE and Chrome, however, were much larger: 13.3 percentage points for Chrome and a whopping 20 points for IE.

Those variances have been obvious of late. In the early months of 2012, Net Applications revealed a rebound of IE and a halt to Chrome’s usual growth. By Net Applications’ calculations, the turnaround has been IE’s most significant and longest-sustained since the browser began shedding share last decade, first to Firefox, then to Chrome.

Meanwhile, StatCounter has spotted no sign of an IE recovery, and has said IE’s share fell and Chrome’s climbed in each of the first four months of the year.

covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at Twitter @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg’s RSS feed Keizer RSS. His email address is gkeizer@computerworld.com.

See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com.

More: Browser Topic Center

Read more about Browsers in Computerworld’s Browsers Topic Center.

Article source: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9227536/Chrome_to_take_world_s_top_browser_spot_for_May?taxonomyId=71

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30 May 12 Chrome to Take World's Top Browser Spot for May


Google’s Chrome is about to grab the top browser spot for a full month for the first time from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, data from a Web analytics company showed.

For the month through Monday, Chrome had an average usage share of 32.5%, slightly higher than Internet Explorer’s (IE) 32.1%, according to Irish company StatCounter.

If the remaining three days of May play out as did the previous 28, Chrome will take the browser crown from IE for a full month for the first time since Chrome’s September 2008 launch.

Chrome — powered by upswings each weekend — is likely to take the browser crown from Microsoft’s IE this month for the first time. (Data: StatCounter.)

Previously, Chrome had edged IE on weekends, and then earlier this month topped Microsoft’s combined browser usage share for the week ending May 20. That trend continued in the month’s fourth week as Chrome beat IE 32.9% to 31.4% for the seven days ending May 27.

The spread between the two browsers for the fourth week of the month was 67% larger than during the third week, hinting that Chrome continues to gain momentum in the share race.

Other browsers remained steady. Through May 28, Mozilla’s Firefox accounted for 25.5% of all browsers used worldwide, while Apple‘s Safari and Opera Software’s Opera logged in at 7.1% and 1.8%, respectively.

But StatCounter’s numbers are contentious in some quarters.

Rival metrics firm Net Applications, for example, cites data that shows Chrome far behind IE, with April’s numbers spotting Chrome at 18.9% and IE at 54.1%, or almost three times larger. Net Applications does not make its daily share data available to the public, so a direct comparison with StatCounter’s numbers through Monday was not possible.

Although both companies discard Chrome’s pre-rendered pages — those that the browser loads in the background in case the user decides to view them — their methodologies differ significantly. For one thing, StatCounter tallies page views while Net Applications counts unique visitors.

More importantly, Net Applications — but not StatCounter — weights its data by country to account for the lack of Western insight into browsing habits in places like China, where IE is the overwhelming favorite. The result is that Net Applications’ numbers for IE are always much larger, and Chrome’s much smaller, than StatCounter’s.

Not surprisingly, Microsoft has accepted Net Applications’ estimates and rejected StatCounter’s.

The two companies’ numbers for Firefox, Safari and Opera are typically in the same ballpark. In April, 4.7 percentage points separated the numbers for Firefox, 2.3 points for Safari and just one-tenth of a percentage point for Opera.

The differences between their shares for IE and Chrome, however, were much larger: 13.3 percentage points for Chrome and a whopping 20 points for IE.

Those variances have been obvious of late. In the early months of 2012, Net Applications revealed a rebound of IE and a halt to Chrome’s usual growth. By Net Applications’ calculations, the turnaround has been IE’s most significant and longest-sustained since the browser began shedding share last decade, first to Firefox, then to Chrome.

Meanwhile, StatCounter has spotted no sign of an IE recovery, and has said IE’s share fell and Chrome’s climbed in each of the first four months of the year.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg’s RSS feed. His email address is gkeizer@computerworld.com.

See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com.

Read more about browsers in Computerworld’s Browsers Topic Center.

Article source: http://www.pcworld.com/article/256373/chrome_to_take_worlds_top_browser_spot_for_may.html

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29 May 12 Chrome to take top browser spot from Internet Explorer for May


Google Chrome will grab the top browser spot for a full month for the first time from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, according to data from StatCounter.

For the month until yesterday, Chrome had an average usage share of 32.5%, slightly higher than IE’s 32.1%, the Irish company said.

If the remaining three days of May play out as did the previous 28, Chrome will take the browser crown from IE for a full month for the first time since Chrome’s September 2008 launch.

Previously, Chrome had edged IE on weekends, and then earlier this month topped Microsoft’s combined browser usage share for the week ending May 20. That trend continued in the month’s fourth week as Chrome beat IE 32.9% to 31.4% for the seven days ending May 27.

The spread between the two browsers for the fourth week of the month was 67% larger than during the third week, hinting that Chrome continues to gain momentum in the share race.

Other browsers remained steady. Through May 28, Mozilla’s Firefox accounted for 25.5% of all browsers used worldwide, while Apple’s Safari and Opera Software’s Opera logged in at 7.1% and 1.8%, respectively.

But StatCounter’s numbers are contentious in some quarters.

Rival metrics firm Net Applications, for example, cites data that shows Chrome far behind IE, with April’s numbers spotting Chrome at 18.9% and IE at 54.1%, almost three times larger. Net Applications does not make its daily share data available to the public, so a direct comparison with StatCounter’s numbers through Monday was not possible.

Although both companies discard Chrome’s pre-rendered pages – those that the browser loads in the background in case the user decides to view them – their methodologies differ significantly. For one thing, StatCounter tallies page views while Net Applications counts unique visitors.

More importantly, Net Applications – but not StatCounter – weights its data by country to account for the lack of Western insight into browsing habits in places like China, where IE is the overwhelming favourite. The result is that Net Applications’ numbers for IE are always much larger, and Chrome’s much smaller, than StatCounter’s.

Not surprisingly, Microsoft has accepted Net Applications’ estimates and rejected StatCounter’s.

The two companies’ numbers for Firefox, Safari and Opera are typically in the same ballpark. In April, 4.7% separated the numbers for Firefox, 2.3% for Safari and just 0.1% for Opera.

The differences between their shares for IE and Chrome, however, were much larger: 13.3% for Chrome and a whopping 20% for IE.

Those variances have been obvious of late. In the early months of 2012, Net Applications revealed a rebound of IE and a halt to Chrome’s usual growth. By Net Applications’ calculations, the turnaround has been IE’s most significant and longest-sustained since the browser began shedding share last decade, first to Firefox, then to Chrome.

Meanwhile, StatCounter has spotted no sign of an IE recovery, and has said IE’s share fell and Chrome’s climbed in each of the first four months of the year.

Article source: http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/270/f/470440/s/1fcf79fc/l/0Lnews0Btechworld0N0Capplications0C3360A6190Cchrome0Etake0Etop0Ebrowser0Espot0Efrom0Einternet0Eexplorer0Efor0Emay0C0Dolo0Frss/story01.htm

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27 May 12 Opera is Facebook’s best browser play


Computerworld -

Facebook may acquire Norwegian browser maker Opera Software, developer of the Opera and Opera Mini browsers for desktops and mobile phones, according to a report.

The purchase of Opera would give Facebook a way to quickly create a dedicated browser customized for the social networking giant and its estimated 900 million active monthly users.

It would also put Facebook in the middle of a browser battle with Microsoft (Internet Explorer), Mozilla (Firefox), Google (Chrome) and Apple (Safari). Some of those companies — like Microsoft — have partnered with Facebook, while others — such as Google — compete in the social networking space.

U.K.-based technology website Pocket-lint first reported Friday that Facebook “is looking to buy Opera Software,” citing an unnamed source it described only as “trusted.” Other sites, including The Next Web, claimed that while their sources could not verify Facebook’s interest, they did say Opera’s management has been talking to potential suitors.

Both Opera and Facebook declined to comment on Pocket-lint’s report.

Opera is really the only top-five browser that Facebook, or anyone for that matter, could conceivably acquire.

Three of the five are locked into operating systems: Internet Explorer, with Windows; Chrome, with ChromeOS; and Safari, with OS X and iOS.

And Firefox, while not associated with an OS maker, is backed by the non-profit Mozilla Foundation, which has used the “open Web” mantra since its inception. It’s hard to believe that Mozilla would sell Firefox to Facebook, a company that has reaped billions from a self-contained ecosystem.

That leaves only Opera.

But while Opera is the one viable deal Facebook could make, the Norwegian browser comes with its own baggage: It’s the fifth browser, and a distant fifth at that, in a five-browser market.

Last month, Opera accounted for just 1.6% of the world’s in-use browsers, according to data from metrics company Net Applications. Opera has never cracked the 3% mark, never been in anything but fifth place on the desktop. Even No. 4 Safari has three times Opera’s usage share.

And on mobile, the numbers are little better.

Even though Opera claims about 210 million Opera Mini users worldwide, Net Applications pegged the browser’s share of mobile at 12% for April, just half what it was a year earlier. Most of Opera Mini’s losses have gone to Apple’s Safari, the default browser on the iPhone and iPad, whose owners have a voracious appetite for the Web.

(Net Applications’ Irish rival, StatCounter, showed Opera with a 21.5% share in April, with Safari at 23.7%.)

That’s not to say that a Facebook-owned Opera and Opera Mini wouldn’t change those numbers: In the U.S., Facebook collects about one-in-every-five page views. If Facebook branded Opera and Opera Mini with its own nameplate and pitched them to its members, it could quickly boost the browsers’ shares.

Opera Mini also has an edge that could play to Facebook’s advantage: Apple refuses to allow third-party browsers not built atop Safari into the App Store.

But Opera Mini is already in the iOS App Store, managing that feat because it really isn’t a browser, at least as Apple defines one. Rather than render HTML locally on the device, Opera Mini is essentially a proxy that shuttles page requests to Opera’s own servers, which render the page, then aggressively compress it before sending it back to the device.

More: Browser Topic Center

Article source: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9227516/Opera_is_Facebook_s_best_browser_play

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