It may not be official, and repeated press releases about Windows 10 claiming the growing use of Edge would have you believe that it is the browser of the future. The fact is, even if Microsoft won’t, I’m calling it on their position as a major internet browser developer.
Last June according to independent web analytics company StatCounter, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser was at over 20% of desktop computer global usage. Not that impressive given that over 85% of desktop computers were running Windows but nearly 1 in 4 of them were using Microsoft’s default browser.
This has changed rapidly since the release of Windows 10 last July: This has Edge as its default browser and IE11 installed for those who wish to use features Edge doesn’t support. It seems that most people however, even if they have tried Edge, swiftly moved on and downloaded Chrome. In April this year Windows 10 accounted for 17.9% of desktop Internet usage but Edge managed a paltry 2.3% share, not much more than 1 in 8 users.
Despite this report that Firefox edges out Microsoft globally for first time in browser wars; it is more a case of fighting for the scraps left over after Google’s Chrome takes the lion’s share. Both are losing Market share, but whilst Firefox is on a gentle decline of 2% per year to 15.6% in April, Microsoft’s share is plummeting at closer to 5% per year down to 15.5% for IE and Edge combined.
Even Apple’s Safari has no answer to Chrome, Safari’s share dropping from 5.2% to 4.6% in the last year despite steady OSX usage (9.6 to 9.5%).
Whilst the numbers are not yet so dire for Microsoft in the UK and US markets, with Edge managing a 5% share from 29% Windows 10 usage in the UK, the pattern is the same and the rise of Chrome on the desktop continues unabated.