I wrote a WinInfo article this morning about the latest web browser usage stats, and highlighted what I thought was the big story, that Firefox has essentially plateaued after growing for so many years:
According to market researchers at Net Applications, web browser usage didn't change much in April 2010, with Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox holding steady and Google's Chrome making small gains. But while many are making a big deal out of IE's sort-of dip below the 60 percent usage share threshold, IE's been on a steady decline for a while now. The bigger news, I believe, is that Firefox has clearly plateaued.
Indeed, at one time, Mozilla was on the path to 25 percent market share and up, and was quickly establishing itself as the clear number two choice. It was a favorite of enthusiasts and tech influencers, and much of its growth was driven by word of mouth. But a funny thing has happened: Since hitting 24 percent usage share in October 2009, Firefox usage has essentially flat-lined. And the browser has yet to cross the 25 percent usage share mark.
As it turns out, I missed part of the story as well.
In April, the individual browser with the highest growth rate was, in fact, the latest version of IE, Internet Explorer 8. (IE 8 growth was 1.08 percent, compared to .6 percent for Chrome.) And of course, IE 8 continues to be the most-used browser version overall as well. So I guess it's not all bad news.