Google’s Chrome browser has overtaken Mozilla’s Firefox to become the number two browser in the UK, according to market share metrics provided by StatCounter.

The difference is still quite slim -- 22.12% to 21.65 -- but it represents a significant shift in the directions that each browser has been taking.

Once the choice of Internet-savvy multitaskers and IE-protesters alike, Firefox has been losing users slowly but steadily since the fall of 2009. As Google Chrome debuted scant months before, it may be difficult to deny that the challenger was stealing users from Firefox.

A number of reviewers and user have attested to Chrome’s leaner and more streamlined approach, as the once-sprightly Firefox began to add features (and demands on resources) and take on the reputation of being bloated with features. The security-conscious also noted Chrome’s ‘sandbox’ approach, keeping all tabs and windows as a completely separate process. .

Recently, some have questioned the more-frequent Firefox release schedule, noting that Mozilla will soon be in the position of only providing support to versions a year old or less. Although Chrome has a similar version turnover (and was likely one of the major influences on the change of policy at Mozilla), Google’s support offers a different timetable.

The top spot is still held by Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, but a look at the long-term trends show that IE’s decline is even more pronounced than that of Firefox; while IE still holds a commanding lead at 45.51%, that represents an almost 10% drop in the last year for the UK, and a far cry from the three-quarters of the market that IE held three years ago. The same graph shows that Chrome has had a more rapid rise than Firefox, and (all else being equal) could pose an actual challenge to the declining IE’s share in only 18 months’ time.

The worldwide picture is largely similar, but has Chrome still about 5% behind Firefox; in the United States, Chrome has even more distance to cover, trailing by about 7%.

 

James Lee Phillips is a Senior Writer & Research Analyst for IBG.com. With offices in Dallas, Las Vegas, and New York, & London, IBG is quickly becoming the leading expert in Internet Marketing, Local Search, SEO, Website Development and Reputation Management. More information can be found at www.ibg.com. Compound-Stock Earnings founded in 1999 in order to educate the ordinary investor about the merit of covered calls. Their clients generate 3-6 percent every month in cash income.