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Archive for November, 2009

Prepare: Google Chrome OS will probably be available for download within a week

November 15, 2009 1 comment

ChromeOSAccording to TechCrunch, Google is slated to launch its own operating system, Chrome OS, in the next week, according to a “reliable source.” Chome OS is going to be based on Linux, and from the looks of these supposed screenshots, has an interface similar to that of Ubuntu. Google has stated that an early release of the operating system will be available in the fall. But Google isn’t really seriously going up against Windows, at least not yet: Chrome OS will be optimized for netbooks, a small slice of the PC market.

When netbooks were first released, various Linux distributions dominated the market, which fed a period of increased growth in UNIX-based systems. Microsoft then made Windows XP licenses available, and manufacturers quickly jumped ship. If Google can gain inroads into the netbook market, maybe we’ll see Linux rein again. And I think that it’s quite possible that dual-platform computers could be shipped.

So, as of right now, with Google’s current focus, Microsoft Windows is not in any serious danger. With Windows 7, which is already up to a 4.5% market share (something that Net Applications and StatCounter agree on), Microsoft will probably snag a large wave of people who want to use a new operating system. Assuming there are 1.6 billion 1.2 billion online users, 55 million people worldwide are already using it. That’s 55 million people that probably won’t use Chrome OS.

We’ll see what kind of hype the launch creates, and if there really will be a large group of people who make the switch. The market adoption of the Google Chrome browser has been relatively poor: despite a giant ad campaign, Chrome has only been able to gain a few percentage points after a year. It took the browser 14 months to gain 30 million users, something Firefox did in 8 weeks. If the Google Chrome browser is not an Internet Explorer killer, I doubt the Google Chrome OS will be a Windows killer.

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Categories: Operating Systems

October market share recap: IE loses 1%; Firefox, Chrome, and Safari gain

November 1, 2009 12 comments

According to Net Applications, Internet Explorer lost market share in October, while Firefox, Chrome, and Safari gained, and Opera remained steady. And although not all of the data has been reviewed by the QA team, what was interesting was the fact that Google Chrome gained more than any other browser, with a 0.4% increase, which translates to 6.4 million users, assuming there are 1.6 billion online users. This spike for the browser has also appeared in StatCounter’s data. Firefox gained 0.3%, or 4.8 million users, Safari gained 0.16%, or 2.5 million users, and Opera remained steady, with a 0.03% loss, or 480,000 users. All at the cost of Internet Explorer, which lost 1.02%, which is equal to 16 million users switching. This isn’t as big as last month’s loss of 1.5%, 24 million users, which was IE’s biggest loss ever.

Using this market share data, here are the user counts for the major browsers:

  1. Internet Explorer, 1 billion users
  2. Firefox, 385 million users
  3. Safari, 70.4 million users
  4. Google Chrome, 57.1 million users
  5. Opera, 34.6 million users
  6. Netscape, 5.2 million users
Categories: Web Browsers