Internet Explorer usage drops below 50%

Internet Explorer has dropped below 50% market share

Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) has fallen below 50% market-share according to Irish stat firm StatCounter. Usage of the browser has been on the decline in recent years but this is the first time less than half of all surfers used the iconic software.

According to StatCounter the market share of IE was down to 49.87% in September, down from 67% two years ago and 95% in 2004 according to some stat companies.

Firefox is the next most popular browser – registering 31.5% according to StatCounter – while Google’s Chrome has made the leap to third with 11.54% of the market.

This is a huge step forward for the Chrome browser, which had 3.69% of the market last year and is only on the scene since September 2008.

StatCounter CEO Aodhan Cullen suggested the EU-mandated ‘browser ballot’ could be to blame for IE’s fall. This forced Microsoft to give Windows users a selection of browsers to install instead of having IE automatically installed on the desktop from the get-go.

This suggestion holds water too – IE’s fall is most pronounced in Europe where it has just over 40% of the market; in North America it is still above 50%.

This is obviously bad news for Microsoft but the company is still hoping its Internet Explorer 9 – which is available as a beta product at the moment – will be good enough to reverse the rot.

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