Sunday 29 November 2009

MSIE market share below 13%, the problem of not upgrading

MSIE is still by far the biggest browser on a world scale, but segmentation adds another picture:

* In some market segments, MSIE 6.0 is still used on more than 80% of all PCs.
* Some websites have MSIE below 50% (like W3Schools or some Delphi developer sites).

Users seem to upgrade their browsers very differently. MSIE is still used in very old versions on many PCs, Firefox users are much better at upgrading, and Chrome self-upgrades automatically. As an example, this blog has this distribution for the last 30 days:

* Firefox 52%
* MSIE 18%
* Chrome 15%
* Opera 8.7%
* Safari 4.0%

However, if you divide it by major browser versions, in order to see what standards the site needs to support, it looks like this:

* Firefox 3.5 41%
* Chrome 14%
* MSIE 7 12.7%
* Opera 9 8.7%
* Firefox 3.0 6.8%
* Safari (version > 520) 4.0%
* MSIE 8 3.2%
* MSIE 6 2.5%

As you can see, Chrome climbs to second place, and MSIE 7 is on 3rd place, but with a downwards trend. As others have noted, MSIE 7 market share on a global scale started its downwards trend before the release of MSIE 8, and MSIE 8 will probably not gain enough upwards momentum to replace regain the lost territory, any time soon:

There are good reasons for the Bring Down IE 6 campaign, even though it doesn't make sense in some industries that depend heavily on IE6. But actually, one of the most important supporters should be Microsoft... as the numbers show above, the slow adoption of new versions of MSIE is a market share killer, and for Microsoft it would make sense to ask users to upgrade to MSIE 8 asap.

Many websites do not specifically support Opera, Chrome, Safari and other browsers. Maybe they should categorize their numbers differently and reconsider which browsers they should support?


Radek ńĆervinka said...

Some PC need IE6 because they used to crap information systems depended on IE6 (ActiveX and so on) and there are problems in new versions of IEs.

And because MS stated that XP support included support for IE6 there is no change.

Xepol said...

IF you believe that old machines the the true harbour of IE6, then time will do more than the EU ever could.

Old machines die horrible flaming deaths sooner or later (usually sooner) - grinding slowly to a halt until something old and irreplacable dies. Then it is cheaper to just get a new machine.

Give it time.

Lars D said...

Only 2 weeks ago, I saw an organization that wanted to purchase a new IT system, that should be MSIE 6 compatible, but they had no requirements for MSIE 7 or 8 compatibility. That organization and many others still install WinXP and MSIE6 on all new PCs that they purchase.

LDS said...

Could it be also a symptom about how many pirated copies of Windows are around, and how well the Genuine Advantage check works?

Foersom said...

Hej Lars

StatCounter has statistics where you can also filter on regions / countries, and on browser version.

Internet Exploder 6 is little used in Europe and US, ca. 6%. Firefox stand strong in Europe. Here large countries like Germany pull it up, whereas in Denmark it is used less.

As always be careful when you read statistics.

Lars D said...

@Rif: You're missing the point. If you look at the average websites' statistics, in order to find out what platforms you should support, you make the wrong decisions.

You need to figure out, what your visitors need. I have sites where all MSIE versions in total are below 10%, and I have sites where MSIE6 is still going strong with >30% of the total visitors (!!), and where MSIE6 is the most used version of MSIE.