The use of Apple Macs rose over half a percentage point as 2007 drew to a close, according to statistics released this week.
Web analysis company Net Applications monitored the operating systems being used to access its customers' sites, which receive around 160 million visitors per month.
Net Applications found that Mac operating systems represented 7.31 percent of Web traffic during December, but that figure shot up after Christmas to 8.01 percent on the last two days of the year. The increase was "nothing short of spectacular", Net Applications said.
Mac OS usage rose throughout the autumn from a constant of between six and 6.5 percent in the first half of the year. At the same time, Net Applications reported falling Windows usage, which fell two percent throughout 2007.
The company claimed that the statistics were an underestimate of actual Mac usage, because the figures did not include Boot Camp users. Boot Camp is a feature of Apple's latest operating system, Leopard, that allows users to run PC applications in a Windows environment on their Mac.
The apparent increase in the popularity of Macs has coincided with the launch of Leopard, also known as OS X 10.5. Leopard's October launch proved popular with Mac enthusiasts, and sales in the first month were 20.5 percent higher by volume than those of the previous version, OS X 10.4.
In November, analysis conducted by King Research found that 90 percent of IT professionals have concerns about migrating to Windows Vista, while 44 percent are considering non-Microsoft alternatives, including OS X.