Have you turned your back on Internet Explorer in favour of Chrome or Firefox? If so, you’re not alone – new stats reveal that, for the first time, it has less than 50% of the browser market.
This comes as no surprise to me. I stopped using Internet Explorer (IE) several years ago when it started crashing every time I tried to access a web page. It was time to switch to Mozilla Firefox.
Firefox is free, open source software, which means that anyone can contribute to the product. Its homepage is testament to the underlying philosophy that the internet should be public, open and accessible.
There’s more than one browser
That hasn’t always been the case. For years, Microsoft and the European Commission were embroiled in a legal battle. The EC argued that it was anti-competitive for Microsoft to include IE with its operating system.
With the release of Windows 7, Microsoft finally gave in to the pressure and has introduced a choice of browser screen. This has been crucial in highlighting to consumers that when it comes to browsers, they have a choice. And you don’t have to restrict yourself to a single browser, either.
I have three browsers on my computer. These include Google Chrome, which loads with lightning speed but frustrates me with its confusing menu icons.
I’m still using Firefox, too. I admire Mozilla’s philosophy but more importantly it’s a solid, reliable browser with an attractive interface and some nice extras. For example, Firefox pioneered tabbed browsing, which is now a standard feature of all browsers.
And, I haven’t turned my back on IE completely. The browser still works best when I’m installing those all important Windows updates.
Browsers of the future
But the war is far from over. Browsers are your window to the web and with billions of potential customers worldwide, all the key players want a slice of that action.
Google’s Chrome is currently the fastest growing browser – according to Statcounter its usage has tripled since last year and it now has 11.5% of the market. No surprises there, given Google’s successful track record.
Personally, I’m going to continue using more than one browser. Partly, because I have no desire to see Google ‘owning’ the web space (as Microsoft once did with IE) but also because there’s no reason for me to choose one browser over another. They’re all free and, for the time being, live quite happily together on my computer.
For now, I’m enjoying the best of all worlds.
What do you use as your main web browser?
Firefox (42%, 654 Votes)
Internet Explorer (26%, 411 Votes)
Google Chrome (20%, 308 Votes)
Safari (8%, 122 Votes)
Opera (3%, 46 Votes)
Other (1%, 22 Votes)
Total Voters: 1,563