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Firefox Market Share Falters

  |  July 15, 2005   |  Comments

Firefox holds its own, but still owns less than 10 percent of browser share.

Microsoft's Internet Explorer is still the top browser according to reports from Janco Associates and NetApplications. Yet both express opposing views regarding Firefox's standing. The glass is half full and half empty.

Internet Explorer's install base dominates with a market share of 85.07 percent, up 0.22 percent from January, according to Janco. NetApplications puts the share slightly higher, at 86.56 percent.

Browser Market Share, July, 2005
Browser Market
Share (%)
Firefox 8.71
Safari 1.93
Netscape 1.55
Opera 0.59
Mozilla 0.58
Other 0.07
Source: NetApplications via Hitslink.com, 2005

Offerings from other browser developers remain smaller, with the exception of Firefox. It was reported back in April that Mozilla's new browser had rapidly gained market share. Firefox continues to hold the second-highest number of users in both the Janco and NetApplications reports. Yet Janco says interest in the new browser is tapering off, while NetApplications says Firefox is growing and approaching double-digit market share.

Firefox enjoys 8.83 percent market share according to Janco. The install base is up from 4.23 percent in January, though it reached a high of 12.77 percent in April and fell 3.93 percent for June's reading. NetApplications reports an 8.71 percent market share.

Trends in Browser Market January - June 2005
January 2005 June 2005 Net Change
Browser Rank Market
Rank Market
Rank Market
Internet Explorer 1 84.85 1 85.07 0.22
Firefox 3 4.23 2 8.83 1 4.60
Mozilla 2 4.48 3 3.31 -1 -1.17
AOL 5 2.20 4 0.81 1 -1.39
Netscape 4 3.03 5 0.75 -1 -2.28
MSN 6 0.58 6 0.62 0.04
Opera 7 0.34 7 0.59 0.25
Total 99.71 99.98
Source: Janco Associates, 2005

Security issues disclosed in April may be to blame for Firefox's slip, according to Janco. It also cites incompatibilities with IE as a cause for the decline.

"The positive glow of Firefox was dulled in April with the identification of some security gaps in Firefox," said Victor Janulaitis, Janco CEO. "While still maintaining a number two position, Firefox seems to have lost its momentum."

NetApplications counters the under 10 percent market share with a more positive outlook for the emerging browser. "Firefox is starting to tempt the masses with strong word-of-mouth referrals, and is expected to gain significant traction once it gains acceptance by large corporations," said Dan Shapero, CEO of NetApplications.

Janco collects data from visitors to its eight Web sites, plus three additional sites not in its network. Data are summarized and generated using Janco's data integration tool, Zinnote. The Data from NetApplications was compiled from global traffic statistics from Web sites tracked by its HitsLink.com. Data are collected from over 40,000 HitsLink.com-monitored global Web sites.


Enid Burns

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