IE usage drops to record low, could fall below 50% by March

Depending on how you look at it, Internet Explorer is either getting off to a great start in 2012, or it's doing abysmally. Despite IE9's growing market share on PCs running Windows 7 and Microsoft's positive spin, IE as a whole continues to decline, while Chrome is growing rapidly – in fact, Computerworld reports that IE dropped to a whole new low in December via Net Applications.

Last November, Microsoft's Internet Explorer blog predicted that IE9 would be the number 1 browser on Windows 7 by the start of the new year, and it has indeed lived up to this prediction. When it made the prediction, Microsoft said that IE9 usage on Windows 7 had already surpassed all versions of Chrome and Firefox, and was second only to IE8.

Sometime in December, IE9 surpassed IE8 as the most used browser on Windows 7 PCs in the US, and was at about the same level worldwide. While this might seem like good news for Microsoft – they're often their biggest competitor – the other browser related news isn't so rosy.

IE as a whole, meaning every version of the venerable browser, isn't doing so well. Computerworld is predicting that it might fall below 50% by March, a major blow to the browser that once ruled the Internet. All versions of IE combined lost eight-tenths of a percentage point during December, ending what has been a miserable year for it with 51.9% of the browser market.

Eight-tenths of a percent might not sound like much, but when you consider the scale at which browsers are deployed, it is a larger number than it sounds. Chrome, which is eating up most of IE's lost market share, grew by nine-tenths of a percentage point, now controlling 19.1% of the market, and is projected to hit 20% by February.

Even though Microsoft's own coverage makes it look like IE is doing great in the market, they have to be worried about what is happening. There's no shortage of people out there who think they know how to stop the decline, from more rapid update cycles, an increased mobile presence, or something altogether more radical, but Microsoft needs to do something soon.

Although IE is a part of the Windows operating system, its loss of market share is of far more concern to Microsoft than those of other bundled applications (Windows Media Player, WordPad, and so on). Those applications are essential features to the OS, however if users choose to use competing products, Microsoft suffers no losses, other than the possibility that said users could be drawn into a rival's ecosystem. With browsers, it's a different story.

With Google dominating Chrome and being the default search engine in Firefox, it is Bing's best interest that IE grow. While it might be possible to change the search engine in a browser, there is a large portion of users who use the default option. Some of them prefer it, some of them don't know how to change it, others are just afraid to change. Since Microsoft hasn't been successful in its efforts to become the default search engine in Firefox, and since Bing represents a very important part of their strategy, IE is going to be a major supporting factor in that battle.

In the end, 2012 is going to be a big year for IE, no matter how you look at it. Whether it's going to be a good one or a bad one, though, remains to be seen. It's going to come down to a combination of determining factors to see how things play out: Windows 8 and IE10, Windows Phone 7 and the mobile market, and the performance of rival browsers will all play into this epic struggle.

Image courtesy of Microsoft

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Take the MS proprietary junk out of windows within the business world, and that percent will fall to almost nothing. Someone needs to step up and KILL the MS REGISTRY!! Also.. SharePoint=junk (use Google), Forefront=LOL, Exchange=bloat, SQL=mess

Who really cares about browsers? If what you WANT to use is IE, that's YOUR choice.. what does a browser REALLY do? It gets you to surf. That's IT. This whole back and forth over who is number one.. has ZERO impact, more users are on the internet than ever before, THAT's what is important.

The tools you use to get there, who cares?!?! Is it REALLY going to affect your browser? NO, so how much do we really care that IE is ahead of Firefox or Chrome. I like Chrome myself, but do YOU really care? NO, and you shouldn't.

It's preference, it doesn't MEAN anything. What's next comparing colors of cars? Is Black getting more attention than Red? Who gives a flip?!? It's a FREE product, enticing users to use it.. just means someone will make more money as a result, but MS is feeling "good" about a browser, when ADS and toolbars work across ALL the browsers the same.. so the end who really wins? Not MS because it's a FREE product, Google is beating the pants off Apple and MS right now with Droid, Appliances, apps, search engines, and cloud.. the important things, Google is laughing.. because eh.. their browser is a measley 15%.. so what? They don't get revenue from it, so a droid user prefers to visit market.android.com with IE.. Google still makes money from everyone. so be it. If you like Firefox on your droid device.. so what?!?!?! You still bought a droid phone, you are buying and using apps from the droid market, more variety equals a better device and that means more people will use it.

I grow tired of these IE is better than, and IE is better that, not sure who you people are, but IE SUCKS! I can take a NEW machine, don't install any 3rd party apps, use IE, it WILL crash inside of 15 minutes, guaranteed. Reminds me.. to install Firefox or Chrome, don't care what you say IE 9 or IE 8 aren't as good as either Chrome or Firefox.. you prefer IE that's wonderful just means you do NOT know what you are missing.

Proof? Extensions.. visit extensions for Chrome and Firefox.. now get some add-ons for IE, tell me which ones are MORE useful and which ones have MORE functionality, I will guarantee it's NOT IE.

The graph indicates that IE has increased from March 2011 (2.5%) to November 2011 (32.5%) in the US ( I think they mean the United States of America).

U.S.A. has 350,000,000 residents and the other 665,000,000,000 live elswhere on this planet called Earth and have or may not have access to the internet and use a browser to surf.

So do we take these statistics as fact, no on your nelly.

leesmithg said,
The graph indicates that IE has increased from March 2011 (2.5%) to November 2011 (32.5%) in the US ( I think they mean the United States of America).

U.S.A. has 350,000,000 residents and the other 665,000,000,000 live elswhere on this planet called Earth and have or may not have access to the internet and use a browser to surf.

So do we take these statistics as fact, no on your nelly.

Your facts are a tad off, there are 6,500,000,000 people on the planet, not 665 (billion), and it doesn't matter the FACT, but I will guarantee USA is only around 3rd maybe even fourth in Internet usage buddy boy, so USA isn't as technology advanced as we PRETEND we are.. other countries are WAY more technology saavy and advanced than USA residents..

rijp said,

Your facts are a tad off, there are 6,500,000,000 people on the planet, not 665 (billion), and it doesn't matter the FACT, but I will guarantee USA is only around 3rd maybe even fourth in Internet usage buddy boy, so USA isn't as technology advanced as we PRETEND we are.. other countries are WAY more technology saavy and advanced than USA residents..

I made a typo, my excuse was I was not using my computer but a University computer in a library I was visiting.

There are 7,000,000,000 ++ people on this planet.

I did notice the error I made plus the missing 't' however the system would not allow me to edit comments.

Why does Microsoft insist on throwing their money away to create inferior software?

MS could easily stop developing IE's rendering engine, and just make make a custom UI for Webkit or Gecko.

- They would save a ton of money since they wouldn't have to pay developers to work on the rendering engine.
- Every company in the world that develops websites will save money by having one less browser engine to support.
- They could still make Bing the default search engine.
- They would still have complete control of browser UI, complete control of the look and feel of Internet Explorer, so they would still be just as competitive as a unique brand. Only nerds who make websites care what browser rendering engine, to everyone else it would still be a Internet Explorer, just newer and faster and stuff.

Seriously, I see zero advantage to Microsoft in developing their own unique browser engine. Open source browser engines are free, fast, and way better than anything Microsoft can develop, and using them would make Internet Explorer better and have zero negative impact. How come they don't see or choose to ignore this?

Edited by kayan, Jan 4 2012, 7:57pm :

kayan said,
Why does Microsoft insist on throwing their money away to create inferior software?

MS could easily stop developing IE's rendering engine, and just make make a custom UI for Webkit or Gecko.

- They would save a ton of money since they wouldn't have to pay developers to work on the rendering engine.
- Every company in the world that develops websites will save money by having one less browser engine to support.
- They could still make Bing the default search engine.
- They would still have complete control of browser UI, complete control of the look and feel of Internet Explorer, so they would still be just as competitive as a unique brand. Only nerds who make websites care what browser rendering engine, to everyone else it would still be a Internet Explorer, just newer and faster and stuff.

Seriously, I see zero advantage to Microsoft in developing their own unique browser engine. Open source browser engines are free, fast, and way better than anything Microsoft can develop, and using them would make Internet Explorer better and have zero negative impact. How come they don't see or choose to ignore this?

Tell me, why should they drop an engine that works as good as webkit does these days? I'm missing your point here.

alwaysonacoffebreak said,

Tell me, why should they drop an engine that works as good as webkit does these days? I'm missing your point here.

As good as Webkit is quite stretch. At best, I'd say it's as good as Webkit 2 years ago, if Webkit failed at implementing CSS and the DOM correctly.

kayan said,

I see zero advantage to Microsoft in developing their own unique browser engine. Open source browser engines are free, fast, and way better than anything Microsoft can develop, and using them would make Internet Explorer better and have zero negative impact. How come they don't see or choose to ignore this?

They're not ignoring anything, it seems like you've never used IE9, but just came here to go and bash IE because of its old versions. That's really ignorant dude, just like many other people in this thread.
Ignorance is the main problem about wronngly developed opinions these days. People are so quick to judge, but soo slow to correct themselves.

Coi said,

They're not ignoring anything, it seems like you've never used IE9, but just came here to go and bash IE because of its old versions. That's really ignorant dude, just like many other people in this thread.
Ignorance is the main problem about wronngly developed opinions these days. People are so quick to judge, but soo slow to correct themselves.

You know, being mistakenly called ignorant is not nearly as ridiculous or awful as the time I've spent making websites work in IE9. One time I spent hours overcoming an error in its DOM implementation which makes it impossible to read the child nodes of an object tag in IE9. While searching online for a solution, I found a blog entry from a Microsoft developer who worked on IE9, where he said that they knew that this specific glitch existed, and that he just doesn't care enough to fix it. I had to make a completely separate solution just for IE9 that uses global variables to avoid the DOM just to make it work in IE9. Mind you I hate both browser specific code and global variables.

Also, anyone who has spent any time developing for that unapologetically half-assed browser called IE9 knows how annoying it is to try to accomplish anything with its subpar JavaScript debugger and web inspector. These are worse than the developer tools I've seen in any non-IE browser. But I guess some developers are placated just because its JavaScript debugger is no longer giving incorrect line numbers.

I've been using firefox since 2005. I'll never return to IE unless they do a major overhaul, and maybe not even then.

When i first turn on my machine, FireFox (My choice of browser) can take upto 30-40 seconds to actually load up. Yet i still use it, i prefer it.

Google Chrome is faster but i dont like its compatibility with LogMeIn.

WarioTBH said,
When i first turn on my machine, FireFox (My choice of browser) can take upto 30-40 seconds to actually load up. Yet i still use it, i prefer it.

Sounds like you have major problems with your install, tbh. It shouldn't take anywhere near that amount of time.

For some reason neowin mods deleted my post without giving me a reason which is odd but.. What I said was I prefer Chrome (sorry mods but I do) and I find IE/FF doesn't run as fast as what Chrome does for me. I agree though that IE9 is pretty awesome compared to FF

I love all of the negative comments here.

You people are all blind. IE9 is not the same software as IE8 and lower.

You seem to think that it has the same problems as the earlier versions.
Yes I agree that everything pre-IE9 needs to go away.

MS get sh*t on for their legacy, and sh*t on even harder when they try to change and remedy the situation.

Microsoft are the biggest case of damned if they do, and damned if they don't.

Instead of holding on to your decades old bias, wake up and re-evaluate YOUR opinions.
When you do independent research instead of clinging to your FUD thinking you're the Expert in YOUR circle, wake up and learn that computing is evolving, even though you aren't.

dotf said,
I love all of the negative comments here.

You people are all blind. IE9 is not the same software as IE8 and lower.

You seem to think that it has the same problems as the earlier versions.
Yes I agree that everything pre-IE9 needs to go away.

MS get sh*t on for their legacy, and sh*t on even harder when they try to change and remedy the situation.

Microsoft are the biggest case of damned if they do, and damned if they don't.

Instead of holding on to your decades old bias, wake up and re-evaluate YOUR opinions.
When you do independent research instead of clinging to your FUD thinking you're the Expert in YOUR circle, wake up and learn that computing is evolving, even though you aren't.

IE9 UI still sucks horrible, it doesn't have the add-on library to compete with Chrome/FF and too many people have been burned by IE in the past to consider it now.

KingCrimson said,
too many people have been burned by IE in the past to consider it now.

exactly the point I was trying to make, thank you!
Get the FUD out.

dotf said,

exactly the point I was trying to make, thank you!
Get the FUD out.


That's how things worked. Microsoft was arrogant and burned the "Internet Explorer" brand to the ground.

People defended IE7 when it came out. At least it has tabs now.
People defended IE8 when it came. It doesn't horribly screw up CSS as badly as it did before.

Like a hostage with Stockholm Syndrome, you look past your continuous abuse and focus only on the small gestures of kindness.

IE9 sucks, sucks horribly, and sucks in many critical ways. The fact is every version of Internet Explorer to date sucks with it's own special list of flaws. Each one being slightly less horrible than the last doesn't mean they stopped sucking. In fact, it's just more frustrating for web developers, who have to work with multiple versions of IE that are each at a different level of being retarded.

Sorry I'm not optimistic about the new version a piece of software, when the incompetency and insolence of the people who made every version of it has wasted my company's money and ruined my life in countless different ways.

Edited by kayan, Jan 4 2012, 8:15pm :

I see a lot of people moving to Chrome from Firefox and IE. Personally, I prefer Firefox for Windows XP, IE9 for Windows 7. IE8 is quite slow on old machines.

This is no surprise. I think Firefox is a much better browser tan IE. Chrome has too many compatibility problems imo. I come across too many websites that do not display correctly.

The problem with IE is the lack of basic features like spell check, bookmark sync and good ad-dons like adblock etc. Another thing is IE is really slow on slower computers.

Deihmos said,
This is no surprise. I think Firefox is a much better browser tan IE. Chrome has too many compatibility problems imo. I come across too many websites that do not display correctly.

The problem with IE is the lack of basic features like spell check, bookmark sync and good ad-dons like adblock etc. Another thing is IE is really slow on slower computers.


You get ad blocks build in to IE9. As far as concerning bookmark sync you can get it with live mesh. Now everyone complains why isnt it part of windows. Due to the anti-trust ruling MS is not allowed to include features like that as part of Windows. The ban is lifted as of May 2011 and these nice things will be arriving soon. IESpellCheck can be downloaded for free btw and IE10s spell check is the same used in Office.

I know about those solutions but it is much better to have these things built in. I don't like windows live mesh. The major reason that made me stop using IE is the lack of good addons. Chrome has some really good extensions that are much better than what is available for Firefox. I have an xbox live friend extension on chrome and I don't see anything that compares to it on the others. That could be one reason many are leaving Firefox for Chrome. IE isn't made for slow machines either.

Riva said,

You get ad blocks build in to IE9.

Adblocking in IE and Chrome is god awful, In Firefox, ABP + easylist really speeds up and makes browsing pleasurable.
Riva said,

As far as concerning bookmark sync you can get it with live mesh. Now everyone complains why isnt it part of windows. Due to the anti-trust ruling MS is not allowed to include features like that as part of Windows.

BS. Bookmark syncing has nothing to do with anti-trust. IE's feature set is always light-years behind the competition.
Riva said,

The ban is lifted as of May 2011 and these nice things will be arriving soon. IESpellCheck can be downloaded for free btw and IE10s spell check is the same used in Office.

Too little, too late. Just like WP7, Microsoft is perennially late to the party.

Joey S said,

Adblocking in IE and Chrome is god awful, In Firefox, ABP + easylist really speeds up and makes browsing pleasurable.

What exactly is so god awful on it? You can simply add a Tracking Protection List to IE 9 called EASYLIST which is the SAME as in Firefox' adblock... Or, do you think Firefox' adblock is god awful too? Nah, that's impossible, because everything about Firefox is so superior <3

Coi said,
...

Adblock as an addon can do more stuff, tbh. That's not to say it's more useful stuff that makes a difference for everyone, but it does have more flexibility.

Kirkburn said,

Adblock as an addon can do more stuff, tbh. That's not to say it's more useful stuff that makes a difference for everyone, but it does have more flexibility.

Adblock just needs to block ads, nothing more, and that's exactly what IE9's TPL does. Whatever extra functions there are in Firefox' adblock, I'm sure I won't need them. Especially if it's collecting user information, showing popups going ZOMG I BLOCKED AN AD etc...

Or, you could bother to have a look at the feature list.

Like, being able to add and remove items on the fly, frequent list updates, ability to disable on certain sites, view a list of blockable items on a page for quick addition.

Like I said, more flexible. No, you may not require that stuff, but it doesn't mean it doesn't exist or won't be of use to many others.

Coi said,
Ohh nice, another IE bashing thread! Go ahead, fanboys!

Or an IE defending thread if they look at your comments.

netmarketshare shows a 52% for IE all versions for all windows versions. The title seems a bit misleading; this should be IE9 usage in Windows 7. Obviously there is a large market share for Windows XP and nobody can guarantee that they will move away from IE when they upgrade their OS. Appart from that, good job for FF and Chrome - start thinking about the corporate space

Riva said,
netmarketshare shows a 52% for IE all versions for all windows versions. The title seems a bit misleading; this should be IE9 usage in Windows 7. Obviously there is a large market share for Windows XP and nobody can guarantee that they will move away from IE when they upgrade their OS. Appart from that, good job for FF and Chrome - start thinking about the corporate space

The title IS misleading; this should be IE9 usage on Windows 7 in US.

The first thing I do on a new computer with new Win7 is installed Firefox. I'm sure like many of you here, I'm the computer guy among family, relatives, and friends. And I would put Firefox on all their computers and delete all traces of IE. After a few years, they don't even know what IE is anymore. Firefox is the internet to them.

So Microsoft, make IE appeal to the computer guy in the family or else continue to see your browser market share dwindle every year. And why do I use Firefox? The answer is I can customize it to my liking, and add-ons, add-ons, add-ons, and add-ons.

mayamaniac said,
The first thing I do on a new computer with new Win7 is installed Firefox. I'm sure like many of you here, I'm the computer guy among family, relatives, and friends. And I would put Firefox on all their computers and delete all traces of IE. After a few years, they don't even know what IE is anymore. Firefox is the internet to them.

So Microsoft, make IE appeal to the computer guy in the family or else continue to see your browser market share dwindle every year. And why do I use Firefox? The answer is I can customize it to my liking, and add-ons, add-ons, add-ons, and add-ons.


I do the same.

mayamaniac said,
The first thing I do on a new computer with new Win7 is installed Firefox. I'm sure like many of you here, I'm the computer guy among family, relatives, and friends. And I would put Firefox on all their computers and delete all traces of IE. After a few years, they don't even know what IE is anymore. Firefox is the internet to them.

So Microsoft, make IE appeal to the computer guy in the family or else continue to see your browser market share dwindle every year. And why do I use Firefox? The answer is I can customize it to my liking, and add-ons, add-ons, add-ons, and add-ons.


Damn, you must really hate people.

Gaffney said,

I do the same.

I do the same, but I install Chrome (it auto updates too). I leave the IE (internet) icon on the desktop replacing the shortcut to Chrome.

You're not "the computer guy in the family". You are "the anti-Microsoft guy in the family".
You will probably never use IE anyway, and you're forcing your relatives to use Firefox only because you think it is superior.
Why should Microsoft spend time and energy to convince people that cannot be convinced?

I do the same.

Step 1. Install Firefox, and set as default browser.
Step 2. Install adblock plus addon with easylist filter.
Step 3. Remove IE. All shortcuts etc.

Aethec said,
You're not "the computer guy in the family". You are "the anti-Microsoft guy in the family".

Well every computer guy wants to keep their family safe from malware, so replacing IE with Firefox, Chrome, or Opera is the next logical step. It's not anti-Microsoft as MS-fanboys like yourself suggest, but helpful to the family and society as a whole by reducing exposure to IE's terrible security and malware record.
Aethec said,

You will probably never use IE anyway, and you're forcing your relatives to use Firefox only because you think it is superior.

If he left IE on the machine he would be doing his family a disservice. I do the same myself. And in terms of security, yes, Firefox is superior.
Aethec said,

Why should Microsoft spend time and energy to convince people that cannot be convinced?

It can't anyway. Anybody who knows anything about computers knows well enough to avoid IE like the plague. IE's market share is completely reliant on the ignorance of its users. Once they learn, or someone in the family learns of better browsers, IE's done for.

Joey S said,
Well every computer guy wants to keep their family safe from malware, so replacing IE with Firefox, Chrome, or Opera is the next logical step. It's not anti-Microsoft as MS-fanboys like yourself suggest, but helpful to the family and society as a whole by reducing exposure to IE's terrible security and malware record.

Man you're blind.
As the computer guy in my family, the first thing I did was upgrade my family to Windows 7 & IE9 & MS Security essentials & automatic updates

A browser is only as safe as it's operator and the underlying OS on which it runs. I also limit my parent's account to the same level as guest.
When they want something installed they call me.

I haven't heard from them since Win7 launched. When I do periodic checks I see that all updates are done except for the third party garbage you seem to need on a computer these days.

Joey S said,

Well every computer guy wants to keep their family safe from malware, so replacing IE with Firefox, Chrome, or Opera is the next logical step. It's not anti-Microsoft as MS-fanboys like yourself suggest, but helpful to the family and society as a whole by reducing exposure to IE's terrible security and malware record.

If he left IE on the machine he would be doing his family a disservice. I do the same myself. And in terms of security, yes, Firefox is superior.

It can't anyway. Anybody who knows anything about computers knows well enough to avoid IE like the plague. IE's market share is completely reliant on the ignorance of its users. Once they learn, or someone in the family learns of better browsers, IE's done for.


All this ignorant fanboy talk, while you never provide any source...

dotf said,

That's what a ballot screen will do for you.

IE is still installed by default in the EU versions. Besides, IE usage was already low in Europe even before the ballot screen was introduced. I guess we europeans have good taste

Good! It means that even non-geeks notice a difference. That lumbering pile of garbage that is IE is still built into windows, and cannot be removed - it's 2012 dammit.

I don't care what people use, to each his own, but Mozilla and Google has made surfing the web easy and fast, and all thanks to MS. Yep, you read that right. MS effectively stopped developing IE for FIVE years 2001-2006 (IE 6 to 7), then they stopped for THREE years (IE 7-8)... Thanks for making the decision to switch to a modern browser a no-brainer, Microsoft! Even my mum downloaded and installed another browser by herself - and she's not looked back.

Frankenchrist said,
MS effectively stopped developing IE for FIVE years 2001-2006 (IE 6 to 7), then they stopped for THREE years (IE 7-8)...

Yet, it's still ahead of all other browsers when it comes to speed and security.. Yup, IE is a "lumbering pile of garbage", again for no freaking reason .

Coi said,

Yet, it's still ahead of all other browsers when it comes to speed

No it's not. Go take a look at the benchmarks again.
Coi said,

and security..

Haha. That one made me chuckle. Join the "spend an hour surfing with IE and see how many drive-by malware installations you can get" competition.

You are seriously deluded if you think IE is anywhere near as safe as other browsers in real world terms. It's the swiss cheese of browsers. There's a reason why Google banned the use of IE at it's offices.

Joey S said,

No it's not. Go take a look at the benchmarks again.

Haha. That one made me chuckle. Join the "spend an hour surfing with IE and see how many drive-by malware installations you can get" competition.

You are seriously deluded if you think IE is anywhere near as safe as other browsers in real world terms. It's the swiss cheese of browsers. There's a reason why Google banned the use of IE at it's offices.


Know what? There's a thing called Windows Update. Set it to Automatic, forget about it...done! Your IE is now secure!

Joey S said,
Haha. That one made me chuckle. Join the "spend an hour surfing with IE and see how many drive-by malware installations you can get" competition.

Show me some links where I can go in IE9 and get some of this drive by malware of which you speak.

IE9 is the most secure browser when running with proper OS security installed.

Coi said,
...

In defence of other browsers, they've all had multiple releases since IE9 came out. While IE9 may have been top of the pile in various benchmarks at release, it doesn't mean that is still the case, a year later.

Kirkburn said,

In defence of other browsers, they've all had multiple releases since IE9 came out. While IE9 may have been top of the pile in various benchmarks at release, it doesn't mean that is still the case, a year later.

I still doubt this means that Chrome is faster than IE9 as its benchmark results actually seem to be actually slowing down over time: SunSpider gives me 200 ms on Chrome 12 and 210 ms on Chrome 16 (160 ms on IE9). (I know, SunSpider is just 1 benchmark, but it's pretty remarkable as it's made for Chrome's engine)

Joey S said,

It's well known that Microsoft optimised IE9 so it gets good results on Sun Spider.

Seriously? Why would they waste time on that? LOL! Don't you mean it's well known that Sun Spider is actually designed for another browser engine? Give me a source and I'll believe you.

Anyway, for Firefox 9 I get 235 ms which isn't any different from Firefox 4 Beta and still slower than IE9 (and Chrome)...

Coi said,

Seriously? Why would they waste time on that? LOL! Don't you mean it's well known that Sun Spider is actually designed for another browser engine? Give me a source and I'll believe you.

http://www.favbrowser.com/micr...in-the-sunspider-benchmark/
http://arstechnica.com/microso...9-cheating-at-sunspider.ars
http://www.liveside.net/2010/1...sunspiderthe-plot-thickens/
http://www.osnews.com/story/24...ing_on_SunSpider_Benchmark/
Coi said,

Anyway, for Firefox 9 I get 235 ms which isn't any different from Firefox 4 Beta and still slower than IE9 (and Chrome)...

That's not possible because in 9.0.1 Mozilla introduced type inference, which increased javascript execution speed by a good 25-30%:
https://blog.mozilla.com/blog/...fox-speedy-up-to-30-faster/

Perhaps you should consider an alternate test engine.

Dead code elimination is not an 'optimalization for SunSpider', it's a feature which unfortunately gives IE 9 a score of just 10 ms less. That's still not enough to prove that other browsers are faster.

Joey S said,

That's not possible because in 9.0.1 Mozilla introduced type inference, which increased javascript execution speed by a good 25-30%

I've never tested it in Firefox 4, I just compared it to the result in the graph which may have used different specs.

I've reran the test multiple times without any other programs open, and Firefox 9 gave me an average of 180 ms while IE 9 is still faster with 150 ms (add +10 ms for cheating.. still not above 180).

I think SunSpider is a reliable source for speed comparison between IE and FF because no browser has advantages over the other. If we take Kraken, Firefox 9's score gets almost 4 times better than IE9's score.

No SunSpider is not a reasonable *sole* comparison of browsers. Many browser functions would not be tested by SunSpider, or only marginally tested.

That Kraken is faster on Fx than IE is hardly a reason to discount it, but you shouldn't take any single benchmark as a measure of the overall speed of a browser - none of them are really intended as such.

They measure aspects of browsers, relevant at the time of making the benchmark, and are likely to be slightly biased towards the creator.

(I'm not saying they're entirely useless, but it's really not reasonable to go around saying X is faster than Y because of a few ms in Z benchmark).

Kirkburn said,
They measure aspects of browsers, relevant at the time of making the benchmark, and are likely to be slightly biased towards the creator.

That's exactly what I was saying about Mozilla's Kraken test. SunSpider is still a more reliable source because it is biased towards the JS engine(s) of Chrome / Safari, but not to those of IE or FF.
I agree that this single test still doesn't show which browser is the fastest, but I still believe IE 9 is the fastest because it has been proven by many other benchmarks, including many graphical ones.

I see what you mean now, for specific browser comparisons.

Right now, all of them are pretty fast, which is a pretty good situation to be in

@everyone who thinks IE is slow: Go to the add-ons manager and disable everything you find...done. IE is fast again.
Sadly, IE's plugin model slows it down if one add-on is slow to load...

Aethec said,
@everyone who thinks IE is slow: Go to the add-ons manager and disable everything you find...done. IE is fast again.
Sadly, IE's plugin model slows it down if one add-on is slow to load...

If IE9 notices that a plug-in is to slow then it will inform you to take action to disable the Plug-in in question. Yes this pop-up that informs you shows each currently running plug-in and the time it took to load. Very convenient.

jesseinsf said,

If IE9 notices that a plug-in is to slow then it will inform you to take action to disable the Plug-in in question. Yes this pop-up that informs you shows each currently running plug-in and the time it took to load. Very convenient.

Indeed. However, ten moderately slow plugins can completely slow down IE and not be reported because none of them is too slow.

The only reason for this is, because Google bundles Chrome with every freeware app out there and agressively promotes it through the different portals like google.com and youtube and so on and tries to undermine use dirty ui tricks so ie users can't navigate properly.
Like the <strong> trick on google code so none can select the svn adress or the <div> trick on google.com so none can rightclick on the google.com navigation to open links in a new window/tab, and so on.

sorlag said,
The only reason for this is, because Google bundles Chrome with every freeware app out there and agressively promotes it through the different portals like google.com and youtube and so on and tries to undermine use dirty ui tricks so ie users can't navigate properly.
Like the <strong> trick on google code so none can select the svn adress or the <div> trick on google.com so none can rightclick on the google.com navigation to open links in a new window/tab, and so on.

That's quite something. Is that not like activex with IE years ago but Google aren't as obvious this time around but just as bad trying to lock you in and others out.

People should call Google out on this more if it's true no matter how good the browser may be. What else might they possibly do when they get even more market share. They have a lot of services that they can use to force things.

sorlag said,
The only reason for this is, because Google bundles Chrome with every freeware app out there and agressively promotes it through the different portals like google.com and youtube and so on and tries to undermine use dirty ui tricks so ie users can't navigate properly.

And Microsoft making IE the default browser for 99% of all desktop PC's and laptops sold doesn't help IE? Give me a break. If IE wasn't installed by default, its market share would be like WP7 - at about 1%. IE survives only on the ignorance of the user base. But as seen in the usage figures, this is slowly changing.

Users are going out of their way to install a third party browser. Nobody goes out of their way to install IE. In fact many people, including myself, would like nothing better than removing every trace of IE from our Windows installations. Microsoft has deliberately made that impossible though.

sorlag said,

Like the <strong> trick on google code so none can select the svn adress or the <div> trick on google.com so none can rightclick on the google.com navigation to open links in a new window/tab, and so on.

People can choose to visit a different search engine, how many can use a browser other than IE when they first buy a new PC/Laptop? OEM's should be installing alternate default browsers, but I fear Microsoft would just strip them of their OEM discounts as per normal anti-competitive practises.

Joey S said,
Users are going out of their way to install a third party browser.

In the US.
Other countries have a ballot screen, or so I'm told.
The fact IE market share is dropping in the US is that the economy sucks, and as a result children are moving home with their parents, and maintaining these neglected systems. Replacing the browser is part and parcel for this.

dotf said,

In the US.
Other countries have a ballot screen, or so I'm told.

I live in the EU, and I can assure you that IE is still preinstalled and the default browser. A user can merely dismiss the browser ballot and nothing has changed, The EU's ballot box feature is a failure.

dotf said,

The fact IE market share is dropping in the US is that the economy sucks, and as a result children are moving home with their parents, and maintaining these neglected systems. Replacing the browser is part and parcel for this.

Whatever the reason, it has been dropping and will continue to drop. My theory is that the younger generation are more savvy about technology and software in general.

The feeling that IE, version, and functionality are separate is starting to drive people away.

So far people are thinking IE10 will be windows 8 only; No comments from MS yet on that. People will go with the browser that is interesting and Chrome is setting the pace...

IMHO I think MS should brake IE into IE for consumers and IE Enterprise Edition. The consumer version can be the test bed for stablizing new functionality. The enterprise version will be super stable and offer the most solid enterprise significant security.

mranderson1st said,
The feeling that IE, version, and functionality are separate is starting to drive people away.

So far people are thinking IE10 will be windows 8 only; No comments from MS yet on that. People will go with the browser that is interesting and Chrome is setting the pace...

IMHO I think MS should brake IE into IE for consumers and IE Enterprise Edition. The consumer version can be the test bed for stablizing new functionality. The enterprise version will be super stable and offer the most solid enterprise significant security.

MS has said IE10 will be on Windows 7 as well, it's pretty much official, don't know why people think otherwise.

MS doesn't have to break IE into two versions, why? Because enterprise can run app-v on their systems and run the version of IE they want on newer versions of Windows in a VM. They do this today with IE6 on Windows 7, so MS has done it's part already.

GP007 said,

MS has said IE10 will be on Windows 7 as well, it's pretty much official, don't know why people think otherwise.

And IE11? At this rate, Windows 7 users will be lucky to get IE10.

Joey S said,

And IE11? At this rate, Windows 7 users will be lucky to get IE10.

No reason to think otherwise unless they say so when IE11 starts development, till then you and others are only guessing.

And again, MS said IE10 is coming to windows 7, we'll get the beta and RCs when the time comes.

GP007 said,
MS has said IE10 will be on Windows 7 as well, it's pretty much official, don't know why people think otherwise.

To date, the platform previews are only available to Win8 Dev preview users.

Good new.
Last time I used IE (8) its usability, speed and overall user experience was significantly behind ones of FF and Chrome.
Then IE9 come out and stubbornly refused to install on my W7 machine, regardless countless reboots and emergency procedures recommended by MS itself.
I hope a little lesson will help MS in releasing a good browser, more choice is better for users so I hope they will finally release a decent browser.

dissed said,
Good new.
Last time I used IE (8) its usability, speed and overall user experience was significantly behind ones of FF and Chrome.
Then IE9 come out and stubbornly refused to install on my W7 machine, regardless countless reboots and emergency procedures recommended by MS itself.
I hope a little lesson will help MS in releasing a good browser, more choice is better for users so I hope they will finally release a decent browser.

Are you saying that IE 8 is more reliable then Chrome and FF? Just wondering if I'm understanding you correctly.

dissed said,
Good new.
Last time I used IE (8) its usability, speed and overall user experience was significantly behind ones of FF and Chrome.
Then IE9 come out and stubbornly refused to install on my W7 machine, regardless countless reboots and emergency procedures recommended by MS itself.
I hope a little lesson will help MS in releasing a good browser, more choice is better for users so I hope they will finally release a decent browser.

Stop using registry cleaners and tweaking things that were not meant to be tweaked. you won't have these issues.

jesseinsf said,

Stop using registry cleaners and tweaking things that were not meant to be tweaked. you won't have these issues.

Stop assuming people are doing weird things to their computers. Just sound come off sounding like an ass because you are ass-uming.

Hey MS, how about when my machine BSODs while IE is open, I don't lose all of my cookies.

That would be less of a slap in the face. Thanks.

Turge said,
Hey MS, how about when my machine BSODs while IE is open, I don't lose all of my cookies.

That would be less of a slap in the face. Thanks.

LOL!!!!!!!
How about you fix your hardware issue so you don't get BSODs.
Why should MS fix something that's obviously your unique circumstance.

Do you even know what you're asking?

Oh no, my computer has had a major hardware fault! Damn, now I'll have to log into that site again. Oh, the major hardware fault? Nah, not as important.

Seriously I would prefer to use my own browser if I want to use IE someday. who gave those figures. They are wrong. Either Chrome or FF should be first. probably chrome

Yes indeed, MS needs to do something soon. FIX their pathetic graphical user interface.

1. Bring back/back port traditional IE6 style Favorites management to the new version of IE. Yes...yes.....yes....MS, you know well what I am talking about - the thing about the Favorites not really being a menu (like the Start menu) which lets us manage bookmarks (delete etc) from within the menu without the menu disappearing every after operation.

2. When moving over bookmarks/favorites, show the link in the status bar - Why do I have to wait for a tool tip to appear to see the link...

3. Hmm, this is pretty much the only thing that hooked me up on Firefox (the extensions are a bonus).

If MS implements the first 2 features back in classic IE (non Metro), I may possibly return to IE but no I give no guarantees.

Edited by rwx, Jan 2 2012, 6:32am :

rwx said,
Yes indeed, MS needs to do something soon. FIX their pathetic graphical user interface.

1. Bring back/back port traditional IE6 style Favorites management to the new version of IE. Yes...yes.....yes....MS, you know well what I am talking about - the thing about the Favorites not really being a menu (like the Start menu) which lets us manage bookmarks (delete etc) from within the menu without the menu disappearing every after operation.

2. When moving over bookmarks/favorites, show the link in the status bar - Why do I have to wait for a tool tip to appear to see the link...

3. Hmm, this is pretty much the only thing that hooked me up on Firefox (the extensions are a bonus).

If MS implements the first 2 features back in classic IE (non Metro), I may possibly return to IE but no I give no guarantees.


Uhhh, I can delete and move bookmarks around in the favorites menu of IE9 just fine without it disappearing after each operation. Hell, I delete lots of old bookmarks often and the menu doesn't go anywhere unless I actually click outside of it (like on the webpage I'm on or a tab or something. So I honestly have no idea what you're doing to get it to vanish on your because it doesn't for me.

2, I can't sorta see why some might want this on the status bar, it shows up for links in webpages which is fine, BUT, if i'm mousing around the favorites menu, for me on IE9, the urls tool tips pop-up instantly. I'm not "waiting" for them at all, it's very fast and instant that I don't even think about it. And besides the menu itself is in the top right side of the screen, why would I want to mouse over there and then have to look in the lower status bar for the info I want? That doesn't seem to make sense to me really.

I'll give you #3, they need a easier to code for extension/add-on system.

GP007 said,


Uhhh, I can delete and move bookmarks around in the favorites menu of IE9 just fine without it disappearing after each operation. Hell, I delete lots of old bookmarks often and the menu doesn't go anywhere unless I actually click outside of it (like on the webpage I'm on or a tab or something. So I honestly have no idea what you're doing to get it to vanish on your because it doesn't for me.

2, I can't sorta see why some might want this on the status bar, it shows up for links in webpages which is fine, BUT, if i'm mousing around the favorites menu, for me on IE9, the urls tool tips pop-up instantly. I'm not "waiting" for them at all, it's very fast and instant that I don't even think about it. And besides the menu itself is in the top right side of the screen, why would I want to mouse over there and then have to look in the lower status bar for the info I want? That doesn't seem to make sense to me really.

I'll give you #3, they need a easier to code for extension/add-on system.


He must have an ancient setup.

GP007 said,
I'll give you #3, they need a easier to code for extension/add-on system.

Because plain HTML for Web Slices, Pinned Sites and Accelerators aren't easy?

Or are you referring to the old COM way of creating browser toolbars which hasn't changed since ie5?

Good thing the Windows runtime is on the way to make coding easier for everyone.

Yay proof that copying the Chrome UI won't help IE gain users. What will certainly help MS is upgrading the rendering engine with major stable releases more frequently without making constant UI changes, removing features and giving IE to all Windows customers, old or new. That obviously is never going to happen so Microsoft will settle happily for a smaller market share as long as their OS sells well.

xpclient said,
Yay proof that copying the Chrome UI won't help IE gain users. What will certainly help MS is upgrading the rendering engine with major stable releases more frequently without making constant UI changes, removing features and giving IE to all Windows customers, old or new. That obviously is never going to happen so Microsoft will settle happily for a smaller market share as long as their OS sells well.
Yes, but can a pizza shop give up free pizza for every pizza pie bought? 2 for 1? 10 for 1?

xpclient said,
Yay proof that copying the Chrome UI won't help IE gain users. What will certainly help MS is upgrading the rendering engine with major stable releases more frequently without making constant UI changes, removing features and giving IE to all Windows customers, old or new. That obviously is never going to happen so Microsoft will settle happily for a smaller market share as long as their OS sells well.

I think it's gaining users just fine, on newer OS's like Windows 7. Why should they still try and cover XP users? And they update the engine with each new release anyways, I dunno if you think otherwise but that's not true.

Also new features to, IE9 brings new stuff, what did they remove exactly? I've used both IE8 and 9 for a long time and I didn't notice things missing only new things like the download manager for example.

GP007 said,
What did they remove exactly?... I didn't notice things missing only new things like the download manager for example.

Go through my older posts and comments if you really want to know. Tired of copy-pasting.

xpclient said,
Yay proof that copying the Chrome UI won't help IE gain users.

Chrome's UI is ugly as f***. Nobody cares though, because they didn't copy it anyway (unless you think IE9's UI is ugly as well ).

xpclient said,
Go through my older posts and comments if you really want to know. Tired of copy-pasting.

No. Either reiterate in summation, or be dismissed.

dotf said,

No. Either reiterate in summation, or be dismissed.

Says who? LOL. You don't really wanna know I see. By now, in fact everyone ought to have noticed how I complain often loudly about regressive changes in software.

xpclient said,
Says who? LOL. You don't really wanna know I see. By now, in fact everyone ought to have noticed how I complain often loudly about regressive changes in software.

Dismissed.

QUANTA 0000 said,
Love my Firefox

I'm sure many people do, just like with all other browsers, but was that comment really necessary?

Who cares what's the usage in on Windows 7 , which still trails XP worldwide. IE usage worldwide is for months now below 50% and is close to 40%.

alexalex said,
Who cares what's the usage in on Windows 7 , which still trails XP worldwide. IE usage worldwide is for months now below 50% and is close to 40%.

Oh, a lot of people care. XP has been on the decline for a long time.

day2die said,

Oh, a lot of people care. XP has been on the decline for a long time.

The only one that cares is Microsoft which is trying to paint rosy usage numbers for IE.
In a couple of months Win7 will decline in favor for Win8.

By the end of the year IE's market share will resemble those of WP7, close to 2%.

alexalex said,

The only one that cares is Microsoft which is trying to paint rosy usage numbers for IE.
In a couple of months Win7 will decline in favor for Win8.

By the end of the year IE's market share will resemble those of WP7, close to 2%.

Why does Win7 declining means anything to IE since IE10 will be on 7 AND 8 and it's market share will keep rising like IE9's is?

Windows 7 is the newest OS, XP is old and done and MS DOESN'T care about it, they showed that when they didn't support it with IE9, and the Windows 7 numbers with IE9 show that where it is supported it's growing in usage since it's release. They're not trying to point it as rosy, it is, those are real numbers and IE9 going up in Windows 7 is fact, not fiction.

The IE loss is on XP, true, but XP is dying, regardless of how much you want to think otherwise (mostly because of business still holding on). Win7 is cutting it down and Windows 8 will finish the job later this year, after that it doesn't matter.

alexalex said,

Windows Phone 7 isn't even in the graph as it's less than 2%

Avoid the point all you want, doesn't change the fact that it's increasing usage, and therefore not an accurate comparison to IE's declining usage, which is more accurately compared to Windows XP, Firefox, & Linux.

funkydude said,

Avoid the point all you want, doesn't change the fact that it's increasing usage

You can't possibly know that because Windows Mobile/Phone get lumped together.

GP007 said,
Windows 7 is the newest OS, XP is old and done and MS DOESN'T care about it, they showed that when they didn't support it with IE9,

For the record, the things MS did with ie9 were not technically possible on WinXP.
Making the decision to cut the legacy and start fresh was the best thing they could have done. The old trident engine is the scourge of the net, and I would rather everyone who isn't capable of running ie9 run some other browser..

Then maybe, site designers can stop writing crap code that only renders on trident.

Joey S said,

You can't possibly know that because Windows Mobile/Phone get lumped together.

Not everywhere. It's not impossible for stats counters to tell them apart, certainly.

Microsoft needs to force update Internet Explorer.

I've know people with Windows Vista who did not upgrade IE from version 7 and complain about why IE is sooooo bad.

And for those stubborn enough to not update, display a banner to upgrade ever time IE starts.

Edited by illegaloperation, Jan 2 2012, 5:30am :

day2die said,
Microsoft needs to force update Internet Explorer.

I've know people with Windows Vista who did not upgrade IE from version 7 and complain about why IE is sooooo bad.

And for those stubborn enough to not update, display a banner to upgrade ever time IE starts.

They're going to start forcing updates in 2012, with IE10.

day2die said,
Microsoft needs to force update Internet Explorer.

I've know people with Windows Vista who did not upgrade IE from version 7 and complain about why IE is sooooo bad.

And for those stubborn enough to not update, display a banner to upgrade ever time IE starts.

It should say "Stop Complaining and Upgrade and you won't regret it (unless you have a crappy computer that needs to be recycled)".

day2die said,
Microsoft needs to force update Internet Explorer.

I've know people with Windows Vista who did not upgrade IE from version 7 and complain about why IE is sooooo bad.

And for those stubborn enough to not update, display a banner to upgrade ever time IE starts.

Starting yesterday, all versions of Windows will be automatically updated to the latest version through Windows Update, excluding those that have blockers in place, like in enterprise.

day2die said,
Microsoft needs to force update Internet Explorer.

I've know people with Windows Vista who did not upgrade IE from version 7 and complain about why IE is sooooo bad.

And for those stubborn enough to not update, display a banner to upgrade ever time IE starts.

They're going to start forcing updates soon.

Hmm, it never hangs for me. IE 8 used to hang like crazy but IE9 never does, infact I switched back to it because of its speed.

yazb123 said,
Hmm, it never hangs for me. IE 8 used to hang like crazy but IE9 never does, infact I switched back to it because of its speed.
People like the one you are referring to usually have a crapload of **** on their computer. They complain that everything is slow. They use registry cleaners which can screw up any computer. Or they are using an older version of the browser. Or they are just fanboys coming here to just start a flame war.

Well when you tie your browser to the OS, put out one major update per year if you're lucky and purposely cut off newer versions of IE to XP/Vista users, what do you expect? Chrome, Opera and Firefox are tiny little applications that are easy to download/install and still support XP/Vista. Using your browser as a means to force users to upgrade their OS is unnecessary and denies your user base of important advances in security and performance. Some things cannot be ported back, but some things COULD BE and there is still the benefit of users in regards to page rendering and standards. Should Microsoft support it older OS's indefinitely? Of course not, but they could at least support them as long as their competitors.

VRam said,
Well when you tie your browser to the OS, put out one major update per year if you're lucky and purposely cut off newer versions of IE to XP/Vista users, what do you expect? Chrome, Opera and Firefox are tiny little applications that are easy to download/install and still support XP/Vista. Using your browser as a means to force users to upgrade their OS is unnecessary and denies your user base of important advances in security and performance. Some things cannot be ported back, but some things COULD BE and there is still the benefit of users in regards to page rendering and standards. Should Microsoft support it older OS's indefinitely? Of course not, but they could at least support them as long as their competitors.

Every thing you said is true IMO except where you say that MS doesn't support their older OS's for a long enough time. XP is a TEN YEAR OLD operating system...it's time for people to upgrade. By dropping XP support Microsoft was symbolizing that they were entering a 'new era' , or so it seemed to me. Unless you think Microsoft should support an operating system for 15+ years? I mean, I love Chrome (not so much Firefox ) but to say that MS hasn't supported XP is just wrong afaik.

Matthew_Thepc said,

Every thing you said is true IMO except where you say that MS doesn't support their older OS's for a long enough time. XP is a TEN YEAR OLD operating system...it's time for people to upgrade. By dropping XP support Microsoft was symbolizing that they were entering a 'new era' , or so it seemed to me. Unless you think Microsoft should support an operating system for 15+ years? I mean, I love Chrome (not so much Firefox ) but to say that MS hasn't supported XP is just wrong afaik.

Yeah and software does not rot or degrade over time especially if it's continually serviced, made bug-free, stable and maintained. Except if the company's agenda is something else.

xpclient said,

Yeah and software does not rot or degrade over time especially if it's continually serviced, made bug-free, stable and maintained. Except if the company's agenda is something else.

And where do the get the resources to do this? Without leaving the past we could never move forward.

xpclient said,

Yeah and software does not rot or degrade over time especially if it's continually serviced, made bug-free, stable and maintained. Except if the company's agenda is something else.

Feel free to pay them to do this then.

xpclient said,

Yeah and software does not rot or degrade over time especially if it's continually serviced, made bug-free, stable and maintained. Except if the company's agenda is something else.

You know, what you say is sorta true but when software is "continually serviced and made bug free" that means we get newer versions. That's why we have version numbers anyways. MS has been servicing and fixing IE, it's v7...8...9... and so on.

VRam said,
...Using your browser as a means to force users to upgrade their OS is unnecessary and denies your user base of important advances in security and performance...

Uhh... The latest version of Safari is only supported on OS X 10.6 and 10.7. The latest version of iTunes is only supported as far back as 10.5. I remember not being able to update to the latest version of iTunes, when I had an iMac, because I didn't have the latest version of OS X.

DerekMorgan said,
And where do the get the resources to do this? Without leaving the past we could never move forward.

Continually moving forward is not necessary. If XP does the job well for them (and in some cases even better than Windows 7), then that customer can upgrade from XP to Windows 10. An OS is just a tool to do your work or fun. For something like web browsing, software-rendered graphics also job a decent job and get along fine with performance. MS seems to want to create the illusion that just because Windows 7 has accelerated 2D graphics using their newest API, all XP customers must leave behind all their investments and upgrade. When there's so much competition from Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Opera, no one would care about IE. (I personally use IE8 on XP and IE9 on Windows 7 though).

xpclient said,

Continually moving forward is not necessary. If XP does the job well for them (and in some cases even better than Windows 7), then that customer can upgrade from XP to Windows 10.


XP is like a gun without a safety clip. The question is not if something goes wrong, but when.

MFH said,

XP is like a gun without a safety clip. The question is not if something goes wrong, but when.

A gun that fires bullets is a perfectly functioning gun

Matthew_Thepc said,

Every thing you said is true IMO except where you say that MS doesn't support their older OS's for a long enough time. XP is a TEN YEAR OLD operating system...it's time for people to upgrade. By dropping XP support Microsoft was symbolizing that they were entering a 'new era' , or so it seemed to me. Unless you think Microsoft should support an operating system for 15+ years? I mean, I love Chrome (not so much Firefox ) but to say that MS hasn't supported XP is just wrong afaik.

The OS itself has been supported quite well, but what I'm getting at is that IE is packaged as an integral part of Windows vs. being a standalone application like FF, Opera and Chrome, that one could simply download the newest version like the three mentioned. The point is I can run Firefox 9 on XP, but I can't run IE 9 on XP. For the record, I use Windows 7 but at work and at a lot of places, XP is still being used. Like it or not, it is what it is.

xpclient said,
Continually moving forward is not necessary.

By that logic, computers would all run VAX/VMS and be available to 1% of the population.

DerekMorgan said,
Hmmm wow! One would wonder who #1 would be then?

?

IE can and likely will still remain #1 despite less than 50% market share. It's not between IE and just one other browser, after all. Maybe you need to look at the graph above again and see the distance. IE would probably need to lose share to others and drop to 25-30% or so in order for a new #1 browser to take its place.

DerekMorgan said,
Hmmm wow! One would wonder who #1 would be then?

Umm, IE dropping below 50% doesn't mean it won't be the #1 browser anymore..