The most popular web browser?

Lately there’s been a lot of talk about Google Chrome surpassing Microsoft’s Internet Explorer usage and becoming the most popular web browser. Because the web has become so important to our daily lives as we work, play, and conduct business this change of events naturally poses some questions. What does this mean to us as business owners and end users? Join me for a brief review of the data in the charts below and you’ll find that this change isn’t what it seems.

As you can see in the chart below Google Chrome has enjoyed a lot of growth world wide and has indeed become the most popular browser.

Web browser usage from 7/08 - 6/12
Browser Usage

Currently Google Chrome is slightly more popular then Internet Explorer in world wide usage. However this set of facts can be misconstrued if not viewed in context with regional website usage. The following chart shows browser popularity over the last four years.

Bar Chart Depicting Google Chrome as the most popular web browser
Google Chrome is currently the most popular web browser in the world


The following chart depicts the popularity of the same web browsers in the United States. As you can see Microsoft’s Internet Explorer is clearly the most popular browser by a wide margin.

Internet Explorer is the most popular browser in the United States 6/2012
Internet Explorer is the most popular browser in the US in June 2012

Furthermore by looking at the usage over the last month in the following graph you can see that Internet Explorer is growing while Firefox and Chrome are declining.

US browser popularity trends 6/2012. Internet Explorer is increasing in popularity.
Internet Explorer is increasing in popularity 6/2012

In conclusion: There’s really not much of a change. While regional shifts in browser usage has changed making Google Chrome the most popular web browser. The internet remains fragmented by users utilizing various different types of browsers. Internet Explorer is by far still the most popular browser in the United States where it continues to grow in popularity From a business owners perspective continued support for all browser types in your website and web applications remains vitally important. From an end users perspective browsers come and go and should be subjected to the acid 3 test to determine they are suitable for your use.

Author: Joel Caton

Business Consultant and Web Developer from Meridian, MS