Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

Summary: Google's Chrome browser makes market share gains at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer. Plus, a breakdown of mobile stats, including tablets.

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TOPICS: Browser, Microsoft
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If web browser usage trends continue, it will be only months before no major browser holds the majority of the market.

My CNET colleague Stephen Shankland helpfully points out this morning that Google's Chrome browser is making headway in the browser scrum, increasing from 12.5 percent in May 2011 to 13.1 percent in June, according to figures from NetMarketShare.

But market share is a zero-sum proposition, and that gain came at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer, which dropped from 54.3 percent to 53.7 percent -- almost the same amount.

Mozilla's Firefox browser continued to defend its place, preserving 21.7 percent share, while Apple's Safari browser and the Opera browser duked it out on the low end: Safari increased from 7.3 percent to 7.5 percent while Opera decreased even further, from 2 percent to 1.7 percent.

Look at the big picture, and the web browser market is slowly trending toward more equal distribution. But make no mistake: IE continues to have a huge hold on the market.

Mobile figures from NetMarketShare were even more revealing: mobile phones and tablets surpassed five percent of overall browser usage for the first time.

In the United States, that figure is an impressive 8.2 percent.

The browser breakdown in the States:

  • Apple iPhone: 2.9 percent
  • Google Android: 2.6 percent
  • Apple iPad: 2.1 percent
  • RIM BlackBerry OS: 0.6 percent

But perhaps most interesting to me were the tablet usage figures.

Here's the breakdown of tablet share as a percentage of all browsing:

  • Apple iPad: 0.92 percent
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab: 0.018 percent
  • Motorola Xoom: 0.012 percent
  • Blackberry PlayBook: 0.003 percent

In English: the iPad has 53 times the usage share of its nearest competitor.

While that's hard to dispute anecdotally -- there are an awful lot of iPads walking around with few alternatives to be found -- what's interesting about this point is that the spot for No. 2 is really wide open.

As HP introduces its webOS-powered TouchPad, it should be interesting to see the rest of the group jockey for that second position. Will Android win, or will iOS stand a chance the way it didn't in the smartphone race?

Topics: Browser, Microsoft

Andrew Nusca

About Andrew Nusca

Andrew Nusca is a former writer-editor for ZDNet and contributor to CNET. During his tenure, he was the editor of SmartPlanet, ZDNet's sister site about innovation.

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20 comments
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  • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

    "As HP introduces its iOS-powered TouchPad"

    Don't you mean: "its WebOS-powered TouchPad?"
    I[K]
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @I[K] ...paging Dr. Freud! Yes, my mistake. It's been fixed.
      andrew.nusca
      • Funny, because CNN Money/Fortune technolgy commenter presented TouchPad ...

        @andrew.nusca: ... with the phrase <b>"HP released its own iPad ... errm TouchPad ..."</b>

        And considering the fact that WebOS authors are people who also worked at Apple on iOS in 2004-2005 before leaving to Palm, you were not very off with that mistake.
        DDERSSS
      • YEAH!!! DeRSSS!!! YEAH!!!

        You are so smart. First you informed all of us, based on a fascinating Engadget article, that Apple invented LightPeak. YEAH!!

        Then you told all of us that Android is basically a clone of iOS. YEAH!!

        Now you are informing all of us that WebOS is a clone of iOS. YEAH!!!!!

        I can see more lawsuits coming from Apple based on your information and the eventual bankruptcy of HP and Google. DOUBLE YEAH!!!

        I'm so glad that we have you here to keep us informed of these things DeRSSS! I'm also glad that people like us are comfortable spouting conclusions without having any sort of evidence to back up those conclusions. That's a lot of fun!
        woulddie4apple
    • WHERE ARE THE SALES NUMBERS HP????

      @I[K]
      That HP refuses to release sales numbers for the TouchPad simply proves that the TouchPad is DOA.

      Everyone, listen to people like me and DeRSSS. We are in total agreement. NEVER EVER buy a tablet that isn't made by Apple. You will end up getting something with no tablet apps and the screen layers won't be glued together. JUNK!! But don't just take my word for it. DeRSSS totally agrees with me! YEAH!!
      woulddie4apple
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @I[K]

      Yea you are right it's WebOS

      <a href="http://allys.biz/" title="Recruitment Agency, Recruitment Consultants" target="_blank">Recruitment Agencies</a>
      joseph.cornell
  • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

    Andrew, I have a few questions:
    Where did these statistics come from?
    How was it counted?
    How many were counted? (you just show percentages)
    When was the survey started? When did it end?

    Without that information, the charts are largely useless.

    Dan K
    dkusnetzky
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @dkusnetzky
      Well, one demonstrates a trend which is somewhat useful, though explicit sourcing and methodology would be nice. The actual % of usage, of course, is subject to demographic distortions, but in general, it's clear that browser share is evening out.

      The mobile data was sourced. As a convenience, methodology would be nice, but one may search for the original data. Links are always helpful.
      DannyO_0x98
      • All I know is that I believe some of this data

        @DannyO_0x98
        I totally believe browser based marketshare data when it shows that iPad is WINNING!!!!! and I totally don't believe browser based marketshare data when it shows that OS X has small marketshare. But that's the way that me, DeRSSS, frgough, the poster behind the msalzberg / James Quinn aliases, and a whole host of other rabid Apple fans think. YEAH!!!
        woulddie4apple
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @dkusnetzky Hi Dan, the link to the source (which includes methodology, et. al.) is in the first paragraph -- but I'll save you the work. The company collects data from the browsers of site visitors to its network of live stats customers, roughly 160 million visitors per month.

      http://www.netmarketshare.com/mobile-methodology.aspx
      andrew.nusca
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @dkusnetzky <br><br>Results of NetMarketShare surveys are posted on ZDNet all the time; where have you been?<br><br>By the way, you can click on the link Andrew provided for answers to your questions.
      msalzberg
  • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

    Anyone else hate these usage graphs? I can't actually tell how much anything grows, because as one moves, they all move around to pick up the slack. That is, I can't tell if Firefox has grown or shrunk because the shrinking of IE moved it's starting position.
    Aerowind
    • there's an article attached to those graphs

      @Aerowind if you read the article, you'll see that it's going nowhere fast :)
      andrew.nusca
  • 1 question: Which browser is making the most money for its parent company?

    If I were in management at Microsoft, I would stop supporting Internet Explorer and allowing the rest of the browser makers to spend their money in supporting Microsoft's other internet properties, such as Bing, and MSN, and its cloud services. All of the services for any company with a presence on the web, will work with any or most browsers.

    It makes no sense to me to be competing in an area with very little or no monetary gains. Other than reputation, I don't see any huge reason to be competing in that area.
    adornoe
    • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

      @adornoe@... There is one big reason, only by having a browser on the market do you are have any real say in the direction that HTML 5 technologies will go.

      For example of Microsoft left the market, then the brewing format wars for HTML5 videos is basically settle, all the other major browsers support WebM and not H.264. An that something I am sure a corporation like Microsoft want to have a say over.
      Knowles2
      • That answer does not &quot;compute&quot;...

        it's illogical in context of the question I asked.

        The question is not pertinent to HTML5 or any other technology used within the browser or in support of the browser.

        Before HTML5 even came into the picture, the browser wars were popular, and without any good reason for the competition.

        Regardless of what browser is in the lead, or what technology is used in any browser, site owners will adapt to them and will probably adopt all of them eventually. So, the question for Microsoft or Google or any other browser designer is, still, what do any of them get from the wars other than bragging rights of just a reputation of being a good competitor in the field. But, monetary-wise, the wars still don't make sense. Any web-site owner, including the big players, such as Microsoft or Google or Apple or Facebook or Twitter, will be supporting whatever browsers are available and worthy of use.
        adornoe
  • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

    So basically Firefox is stagnant, Opera and Microsoft are loosing share, Safaris only real source of expansion is the mobile sector. tablets and mobiles phones. An Chrome usage is rising rapidly, probably stirred on by xp users looking for updates to there browsing experience.

    An the user gets an more equal field of browsers with no one dominating the market anymore and plenty of competition.
    Knowles2
  • RE: Chrome makes gains in browser race; tablets jockey behind iPad

    The playbook should be happy it even has that big of a marketshare. It will be a downhill slide for them in this arena from here. They should get used to .001 numbers cause thats where the rest of their products are heading.
    xSteven777x
  • Statcounter.com &gt; Explorer is even worse

    Statcounter.com shows even less market share for Explorer:
    http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser-ww-monthly-201107-201107-bar
    Mikegambo
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