Firefox loses market share

Firefox loses market share

Summary: A short-term blip, or a backlash against Firefox security flaws?

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TOPICS: Apps
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Microsoft's Internet Explorer has clawed back some market share from Mozilla's Firefox, according to latest figures.

Web application provider NetApplications said on Friday that the open source browser's market share fell from 8.71 percent in June to 8.07 percent in July. IE's share grew from 86.56 percent to 87.2 over the same period. NetApplications said this is the first time that Firefox has faltered in its rise against IE since its launch last year.

W3Schools.com, a Web development tutorial site, has also recorded a drop in the proportion of its visitors using Firefox over recent months, from a peak of 21.0 percent in May to 19.8 percent in July. The combined market share of IE 5 and 6 increased from 71.4 in April to 73.8 in July.

Over the last year, Firefox' market share has increased significantly, with Web analytics firm OneStat.com reporting that it quadrupled its market share between May 2004 and April 2005, and WebSideStory reporting that it doubled its user base in the US between June 2004 to April 2005.

The drop in Firefox' market share could be an anomaly, or could indicate that some users have switched back to IE. Over the last couple of months, developers have patched a number of security flaws in the open source browser and in Greasemonkey, a third-party extension for the browser.

It is possible that these and earlier security flaws have damaged the open source browser's reputation, although there have also been several IE security flaws over this period, including a flaw in the way IE handles JPEGs and a bug that could allow arbitrary code execution.

Microsoft plans a number of security improvements in IE 7. But as this browser will not be available to users of Windows 2000, the Mozilla Foundation has predicted that it will see a surge in interest in Firefox once IE 7 is launched.

Topic: Apps

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31 comments
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  • This is complete and utter rubbish. Firefox is killing Microsoft, and no amount of advertising will change that. And no amount of security flaws in Firefox will stop that. Do you people know why? Why don't you people spend more time on that question?

    ZDnet management in general needs to be put in collective Corporate re-education - how do you people on the one hand issue an alert for ZOTOB on the same day you shill for Microsoft with sketchy stats against Firefox?
    anonymous
  • I have myself started using IE more on my home pc due to the fact that if Firefox is left running for to long it just starts to eat up memory for no reason I can see!! The other day my pc (and thus Firefox) had been running for about 4 days and I noticed it was getting a bit sluggish so I opened Taskmanager, Firefox (with only 3 tabs open) was using over 600 meg of memory!!!! and its not the first time its done it, plus there's some sites which just don't work propery with it.
    anonymous
  • I started using FireFox since it was first available for download, and have been updating every time a new version or patch were made available (I
    anonymous
  • Netscape 8 has been released over this period. It is considered to be extremely good, combining the best of Firefox and IE. It would not surprise me if the "lost" Firefox market share were to be found as converts to Netscape 8.
    anonymous
  • Anna,
    Why so emotional? I think your reaction is the crux of the supposed sucess of Firefox, people switched for emotional reasons, they have faced the reality of the strange ways Firefox behaves and they go back, simple enough.

    Joel
    anonymous
  • A couple of things;

    1. Netscape 8 came out
    2. Deer Park (The next version of Firefox) went into Alpha. Deer Park returns Netscape 5.0 by defualt.
    3. IE 7 beta also was released.

    Also where do they get these figures? The Live Demo page for Net Aplications (A golf shop) shows a 14% Firefox usage... much higher than the reported 8% or so. W3C Schools shows about 20% Firefox usage...
    anonymous
  • My honest opinion.

    I tried switching completely over to Firefox when v1.0 came out. I made the occasional visit to IE out of necessity (ie. linked pages from MSN, certain websites, etc).

    I did find that Firefox began taking up more and more memory, and worse, there were HUGE lag times on certain downloads.

    Eventually, I had to switch back, not because I like IE, but at least it works consistently.
    anonymous
  • Do not know about others, but I am still using Firefox for its easy convenience and tabbed browsing. I think I will stick to it.

    Sudhakar
    anonymous
  • There'a a lot to like about Firefox, but there are sites that simply do not work with it. For example, my city has a very useful parcel map site that is based on certain Autodesk software. The Autodesk software is compatible only with IE. I talked to Autodesk about the issue; their rep said Autodesk has chosen not to make a version that works with other browsers.
    anonymous
  • big problems with last few updated firefox browsers is the reason people went back to internet explorer, i found my free ram xp memory freeing tool kept going wrong because of firefoxs browsers and also my roboform form filler on top of which i kept getting loads of firefox browser crashes i got fiefox 1.0.5 on 13th july to fix 10 bugs in previous version then firefox 1.0.6 came out on 2oth july and it seems theyve fixed most of the errors their hastily released unproperly tested browser was causing..the dip in use of firefox is due to the errors it caused not fear of bugs/flaws as zdnets article states..if browser users thought like that no one would use microsofts internet explorer..its a joke theyre still issuing patches years after it was released..just showing how poorly tested microsoft products are..im sticking with firefox but they must learn from microsofts disgusting policy of releaseing untested software that allows in viruses/trojans and spyware all the time and firefox must test its browsers dont clash with popular programmes people commonly use.
    anonymous
  • Firefox allows blocking of non-content websites.
    These are also the sites that track browser usage.
    The statement "firefox loses market sharre" may be an indication that more people are using firefaox, and using the blocking capabilities effectively.
    anonymous
  • Not true
    anonymous
  • Cannot believe it, when we are getting a barrage of viruses now... People using IE must be the dumbest in the planet.
    anonymous
  • Something smells here. Memory problems with Firefox? maybe MS is causing them so people report it, in my machine I expericence zero of it. Download problems? NONE. Firefox really beats IE in many ways, and it works in my 3 systems, MAC, PC, Linux. What can you possibly ask for ?
    anonymous
  • Hey, comments with NO log in... something smells here... ZDNET: Why? Is not Microsoft posting this AN messages? How kiut.

    Boy, the think people are stupid.
    anonymous
  • There's a lot of comment here about folks having trouble with some websites and Firefox and then giving up. The truth as I understand it is that Firefox supports W3C standards, whereas IE does not support these standards fully and indeed implemements some of its own. I'm happy to be corrected here.

    Here's how to change that compatibilty/standards issue. I cannot run IE at home as all those machines now run Linux, and they're not going back. So, when I find a site that does not function properly, I find the 'Contact Us' button and send the webmaster polite notification. In my experience it usually works, even if it takes time to fix. Offer to help if you can.

    Imagine you're a business selling online and you get a courteous note that says 'Sorry I couldn't do business with you today because .....'. What would you do?

    Standards exist for very good reasons. We can all do our bit for our community. Don't give up.
    anonymous
  • Students are away for the summer and are often forced to use IE at internet cafes. I predict starting in September when school is back in force Firefox's share will go back up.
    anonymous
  • I dont know what in the world could make me go back to using IE. In all truth I dont know why anyone would want to go back to IE, the only scenarios where I use IE is when a site is specifically built for it.

    I guess people are different, I just dont know why they'd choose an inferior product though, because given the ease of use and capability IE is simply inferior to every other browser out there.
    anonymous
  • So far I've been quite capable of finding alternative (more then once even better) sites for sites that only work best with IE. Usually within a few minutes.

    The only exception being windowsupdate but that site has gotten so slow lately it's actually becoming yet another motivation to switch OS.
    anonymous
  • Someone recently said Firefox behaves "strangely". Actually, it is Internet Explorer that is nonstandard, and web developers have just been writing poor code to accomodate IE.

    Switch to firefox, make your computer more secure, and learn how the web was supposed to look.

    www.getfirefox.com

    Firefox - Take Back the Web
    anonymous