Firefox maker Mozilla is touting early figures that suggest its overhauled browser, Quantum, is winning new users from Chrome.
Since Quantum's release a month ago, there have been 44 percent more downloads from Chrome users compared with this time last year, according to Mozilla.
It also says 170 million people worldwide have already installed Firefox Quantum. The figures offer early hope that Mozilla's multi-year effort to modernize Firefox will pay off.
While the Firefox Quantum's big architectural changes only made its desktop browser lighter and faster, Mozilla also reports a 24 percent increase in Firefox installs on iOS and Android.
Meanwhile, installs of its tracker-repelling mobile browser, Firefox Focus, are up 48 percent on Android and iOS.
Firefox senior vice president Mark Mayo told ZDNet site CNET he is excited by the "halo effect" the desktop overhaul is having on mobile. Most daily Firefox users are on desktop but its future will increasingly depend on winning more mobile users.
It will be interesting to see how and whether this early surge in installs translates into visible changes in Firefox's performance in browser market share trackers such as Statcounter and NetApplication's NetMarketShare. Currently each firm only displays figures to November.
Mayo said Firefox would need to "absolutely kill it" for the whole of 2018 to deliver real change.
Growth in installs and actual usage will be important for Mozilla's revenues, which helped bankroll the Firefox overhaul. Its revenue comes primarily from search deals with Google, Yandex, and until recently, Yahoo.
Mozilla revealed this month its revenues reached a record high of $520m in 2016. These finances also help support Mozilla's broader healthy internet projects, campaigning for privacy, openness, and net neutrality.
Just days before Quantum's launch, Mozilla announced it was switching Firefox's default search engine from Yahoo back to Google for US users.
The non-profit is now in litigation with Yahoo Holdings and Verizon's Oath. Mozilla terminated the five-year Yahoo contract two years early.
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