Highlights from NetApplications data for December ‘08 - Home users dominate data

NetApplications has released data for December so it’s time once again to dig through the trends.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

NetApplicationshas released data for December so it’s time once again to dig through the trends:

Note: I know that many of you distrust NetApplications data, but remember that we are only using the data to examine trends.

Also worth noting for December is NetApplication's own disclaimer:

The December holiday season strongly favored residential over business usage.  This in turn increases the relative usage share of Mac, Firefox, Safari and other products that have relatively high residential usage.Therefore, all December usage statistics should be read in that context.

  • Internet Explorer usage slides again, down to 68.15% from 69.77% the previous month.
  • Firefox market share up to 21.34%, the second month where Firefox has broken the 30% barrier.
  • Safari and Chrome usage also up (7.93% and 1.04% respectively).
  • Opera remains flat at 0.71%.
  • IE6 usage lower in December than Firefox, at 20.46%.
  • Mac share creeps closer to the 10% mark, with 9.63%.
  • Windows usage falls nearly 1% from previous month, down to 88.68%.
  • Linux market share up to 0.85%.
  • iPhone market share up to 0.44%.

Let's now take a quick "year in review" look at the trends, comparing data for December 08 with December 07:

  • Internet Explorer market share drops 7.89%
  • Firefox market share increases 4.54%
  • Safari market share up 2.34%
  • Windows market share drops 3.11%
  • Mac market share increases 2.32%
  • Linux market share up 0,22%
  • iPhone market share up 0.32%

Other interesting factoids:

  • Dominant screen resolution is still 1024x768, but higher resolutions such as 1280x800, 1280x1024, 1440x900 and 1680x1050 have gained significant traction over the past 12 months
  • Comcast Cable, Road Runner, SBC Internet and Verizon Internet maintain the top ISP spots, but AOL drops from 5th place to 7th and Cox Communication takes AOL's place

The most significant tidbit of info in this data is how Internet Explorer's market share has tanked over the past twelve months. This is a serious problem for Microsoft and I don't see anything in IE8 helping to buck this trend during 2009 - yes, IE8 is better, faster and more reliable, but there are other better, faster and more reliable browsers out there. If Microsoft had released a browser as good as IE8 two years ago things might be different now, but as it stands IE8 is too little, too late.


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