For the sixth month in a row, Microsoft Internet Explorer’s (IE) share of the browser market has slipped according to WebSideStory, a web analytics firm.
The latest figures, for the six week period between December 1 and January 15 showed a 1.5 percent drop in IE usage and a 0.9 percent rise in FireFox’s. Overall FireFox usage now sits at close to 5 percent according to most analytics companies, up from 1 percent just six months ago.
WebSideStory noted that the usage of “Other browsers” grew nearly 1 percent to 2.1 percent.
OneStat, another analytics firm, showed similar trends – though according to their calculations IE is down to roughly 88.9% (as of November) and FireFox is sitting pretty at 7.4 percent.
While FireFox still holds a minimal amount of market share, the near collapse of IE’s monopoly over the last 6 months to less than 90 percent is beginning to raise all kinds of bells all over the world – happy ones in anti-Microsoft, pro-choice land and alarm bells in Redmond.
The party line is that FireFox is more secure, faster, and easier to use and not from Microsoft. The reality is rarely so cut and dried, however the FireFox evangelists have swept the issue into such a fervor that it is difficult to tell the truth from the trends. One of those trends may be the move away from Microsoft technologies.
“Our customers tell us there are two driving forces behind switching from Windows to Linux: cost, and vendor independence,” Bancilhon told Techworld. “Ultimately one of the ways the desktop will evolve from Windows to Linux is by replacing the applications running on top of the operating system. Once customers move to OpenOffice and Mozilla, changing the underlying OS is a no-brainer.”