back to article Schmaltz-powered Chrome overtakes morally superior Firefox

Chrome overtook Firefox as Britain's second most popular browser in July, with almost one in four users preferring the Google product. Figures from web metrics outfit Statcounter show Chrome has reached 22.12 per cent market share, overtaking Mozilla Firefox at 21.65 per cent, and doubling its share over 12 months. Good …


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  1. Tom Chiverton 1

    Desktop vs. mobile

    Is this just because a lot of Android devices running Chrome have been sold, or has something really changed in the desktop space ?

    1. twunt

      Chrome doesn't run on Android

      So the answer is clearly - NO.

      1. Tom Chiverton 1


        Well, Google aren't using anyone else's browser are they ?

    2. Mme.Mynkoff

      Android running Chrome??

      Don't think so. Hardly any browsing is done on mobile compared to desktop in any case.

      1. Tom Chiverton 1


        You might think that, but I wonder if the graph is telling us different.

      2. Ragarath


        Quote: "Hardly any browsing is done on mobile compared to desktop in any case"

        Almost all my browsing at home is done on my mobile. It's much easier than firing up the old beast just to browse the web. They work over WiFi to you know.

      3. scarshapedstar

        Hardly any?

        I must be a serious weirdo, then. Granted, I prefer to use Google Reader instead of an actual 'browser' per se, but I do at least 90% of my reading on my phone nowadays.

  2. Frostbite

    Nah :-(

    The number of computers I have seen over the past 6 months where Chrome has hijacked and taken over their computer, admittedly installed by the dim-witted owner where Chrome got installed while they were updating Google Earth or some other program. At least Firefox hasn't employed this lame land grabbing tactic yet.

    I will still be using Firefox, I just don't trust Google.

  3. tim333

    Chrome's quickest

    Chrome's quickest and simplest - I've never seen the ads. Also it's often the only one not to get hacked at pwn2own

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Dont mind which

    As long as they both continue to take away marketshare from IE, then I'm a happy bunny.

    1. Citizen Kaned

      dumb users...

      so, its google's fault that users click things without reading them?

      im not saying it doesnt install chrome on the silent but ive never seen it do this.

      anyway, personally speaking chrome is a good 2x quicker than firefox. on my netbook firefox takes ages to start. i can be browsing 2 or 3 sites in chrome by that time. and on my desktop chrome loads instantly and i can reload 10 tabs in 2 seconds.

      i just prefer the minimal look and usability of chrome. firefox blew it years ago IMO. as a web designer i also hate ad blocks. it just seems like you are stealing from websites. if you dont want adds on free sites, are you prepared to pay?

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        "it just seems like you are stealing from websites"


        Take off every Xul! For great justice.

      2. Hayden Clark


        If I trusted the ad-providers to feed just clean adverts to my PC, I might not be so fussy. As long as the ad-broking world is a massive shell-game, where nobody really knows or cares where the content comes from as long as the money keeps flowing, I'll keep blocking. There's too much malware punted via adverts, even on mainstreams sites.

      3. Gene Cash Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        It is Google's fault

        When they install other crap, like a browser, when someone is installing something else. That's still a fairly slimy trick, no matter how you cut it. That's something I expect from Adobe, not Google.

    2. Mint Sauce

      Chrome is everwhere

      As Frostbite said Chrome has a habit of worming its way onto an unwary user's PC via any number of routes, especially 'free' software as well as google's own updates. FWIW I use Chrom_ium_ and Firefox (Win7). Chromium spanks FF for speed, but there are a few FF plugins which I tend to rely on so it is still my main browser.

    3. Patrick O'Reilly

      Not the only one....

      Opera hasn't been defeated at pwn2own.

    4. Steven Roper
      Thumb Up


      Absolutely agree with you there.

      I've gotten so sick of removing Chrome from peoples' computers because it opt-out installs itself with every fucking freeware program out there, that I now classify it as malware and have added it to my company's blocked applications list. It's right down there with the fucking Zango toolbar and the old Gator and other spyware/malware crud that snuck its way on by using opt-out installation. I also warn everyone I come in contact with in the field that Chrome is malware as well.

      To those who say otherwise - Google Chrome is indeed malware. It reports your usage history to Google (I know they say it doesn't, but anyone who believes them is kidding themselves - this IS Google we're talking about here) which is spyware. And that's what I warn people of when I remove it from their computers after they've called me saying their computer's been hijacked by it.

      The more people that do this, the more likely it is that Chrome will eventually be listed as malware by the antivirus companies, which will send a strong message to Google that this underhanded behaviour is NOT acceptable. Don't be evil? Don't make me fucking laugh.

    5. dave 93
      Thumb Up


      auto translate is very useful too. I do end up with loads and loads and loads of tabs though.

  5. Mage Silver badge

    Oh dear.

    Google Docs


    Google Search AKA Googling

    Google Groups

    Google Code (alternative to Source Forge etc)

    Google Maps

    Google Streetview

    Google Chrome

    Google Android and Davik

    Google Books

    All paid for by "advertising". If it doesn't work it will be re-engineered and re-named and released till it does.

    Our dystopian future isn't Skynet, The Matrix or even the Intel of "A is for Andromeda". It's being looked after by our "do no evil" benign, un-creepy Google overlords.

    I put a fake name on my Google+ profile, but it doesn't matter. Google knows my real name, where I live, what my deceased pet was called, the IP addresses of my children...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Big Brother

      Tin foil hat time

      "All paid for by "advertising"."

      Or does the US government pay Google for information?

      1. Steve Knox

        @Tin foil hat time

        Google can control the variables of their advertising system. Also, have you seen the US government's books lately?

        If I were Google, I know where I'd get my income.

  6. Isendel Steel

    All your data is ours..

    Just waiting for that announcement...

    1. BorkedAgain

      If you're going to recycle a meme, at least get it right.

      "All your datum are belong to us" would be closer. Google it if you're unsure.

      (For great justice)

  7. Greg J Preece

    Still spies on you, still has rendering bugs

    So I'll still be over here on Firefox, ta. The upside is we have to support IE less and less. Just wish people would actually read the T&Cs before they install stuff like Chrome.

  8. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    the only good news out

    of this is that IE continued to slide ever downwards

    1. Pete B


      At present yes, but if you get to the point when Chrome has by far the biggest market share then you're not much better off than when IE did: what's important is that there a number of browsers all with a reasonable share of the market - that tends to keep things better ion standards-tracks than when one vendor decides to 'embrace and extend'

  9. Jim 59

    Anybody using Chromium ?

    the Orwell-lite version of Chrome

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I do ...

      But I still don't quite trust it.

      And it does have rendering glitches and occasionally sucks memory like you wouldn't believe. Just like Chrome.

    2. J-Wick

      Yeah, me too.

      Primarily for 'incognito' mode browsing. Though it seems it's the wrong browser to use for that...

      1. bygjohn

        Try Iron

        Chromium with what was left of the Google spyware stuff ripped out. Portable version available.

  10. Retro Man

    Figures from web metrics outfit Statcounter . . . .

    How many Firefox users have NoScript installed and would not show up on the Statcounter analysis . . . .

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not many.

      You seem to be assuming that a significant proportion of users are both tech savvy and have a healthy dose of paranoia. Most internet users have absolutely no tech smarts at all. As a result I doubt a very significant proportion of end users have noscript.

      The FF faithful seem to be in denial about Chrome's popularity. Well get used to it guys and gals, being a Google product Chrome is just going to continue to grow in popularity. Mozilla will have to do something really significant to gain ground on Chrome now.

      Also Google's major selling point is it's simplicity from a user POV, Mozilla just don't seem to have grasped that most people using the internet these days treat their PC and their browser just like they do their TV and fridge. They don't give a stuff about what goes on under the bonnet, just how easy their appliances are to use. Sure Google's ubiquity is helping the spread of Chrome, but it's main driver is that it just does the job and isolates the user from the technicalities as does the advertising. Go to the Chrome website and one of the first things you see is the question "what is a web browser?". See? They're aiming at people who don't necessarilly even know the answer to that question.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Pinch of salt

      FF and Opera users are probably the highest ad and tracker blockers - remember kids Statcounter does not conform with the new EU law on cookies.

      From my own observations of a reasonably high-traffic international site is that Chrome is growing but not as fast as last year. Results do, however, vary widely from country to country. The worst thing for me is seeing IE breakdown into relatively equal proportions from 7 to 9. I guess not having to worry about IE 6 any more is a win. MS gets the dunce's hat for not backporting IE 7, 8, 9 and now 10 to their older OS. Was chatting with a mate the other day where the freshly minted corporate policy is to stay on Windows XP until 2014 (because the training costs for Office 2010 are considered too expensive). Does MS expect the users to stick with IE 8 for the next three years?

      FF has probably lost a few friends this year due to UI changes but I think the main shift is from IE to Chrome. In Germany FF is still around 50 %.

  11. Poor Coco

    Schmaltzy ad, yes...

    ...but it is remarkable in that it features a father who’s not portrayed as a complete moron or an abusive ass. My hat goes off to Google for that. It’s far too rare these days.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What Ads?

    It can't have been much of an advertising campaign, I've certainly not seen any ads for Chrome. So I doubt the advertising campaign has been responsible for most of that increase.

    Most users are pretty flighty when it comes to browser preference. An awful lot of people will try any browser they get prompted to try. And those complaining about Chrome worming its way onto PCs, it doesn't do that. Users have to check a box or similar to install it. Even then they are not going to suddenly start clicking the Chrome icon where they used to click IE or FF. So they click the desktop icon they usually click to get to the wibbly wobbly web and get a message saying "IE (or FF) is not your default internet browser, would you like to make it your default browser?" the average EU is going to click "Yes". So even if they had "accidentally" installed Chrome they would probably still continue to use their previous browser.

    1. Steven Roper

      "Users have to check a box or similar to install it."

      No they don't. That's why I've banned it at my workplace as malware (see my earlier post.) Chrome is, in every instance I've seen, an OPT-OUT install. That means the checkbox you mention is already TICKED by default and if the user isn't paying close attention, it'll install itself *and* make itself the default browser unless you UNTICK the boxes to tell it not to.

      I've lost count of the number of times I've been called out to people's houses because they installed a program without carefully checking what they were doing and this piece of shit hijacked their system.

  13. A. Nervosa


    I see that over the last twelve months it's been the very same 68 people still using Opera....

  14. Anonymous Coward

    I installed it before it was No2

    Hipster victory.

    1. Steve Knox

      Not quite

      One of us passed away, so we had to recruit someone new.

  15. andy gibson

    Chrome Deployment

    I've just overseen a deployment of Chrome on over 300 machines at my place of work and have recommended it to sister organisations. The reason we went for Chrome is simply that Firefox seems to have become bloated and is very difficult to configure for multiple mandatory and roaming profiles and Group Policy, whereas Chrome was a doddle.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not according to my stats

    I have AWStats running on a site used by non-geeks, so this isn't distorted by NoScript etc. Right now it's a pretty even split between Firefox, Safari, and IE8 (less and less, mercifully!). I get a few Chrome users on my blog site.

    I suggested Chrome to some friends/family/clients last year, and used it myself for a while, but we're all back to Firefox now... we like to be the ones in control!

    1. Steven Roper

      I wonder how long you'll keep your job

      once your boss finds out that the browser you just rolled out at work is dutifully reporting everything the employees do is being reported back to Google.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Calm down Steve...

        Jeez man, we get it, you don't like Chrome. Good on ya, you don't need to blast everyone who doesn't submit to your opinion, though.

        Did Chrome steal your daughter's virginity or something? You're sounding like a fuitcake!

  17. Joe Montana

    Good market share split

    The fact that no single browser has a dominant market share is a very good thing.. It means that web developers will now have to test their sites with at least the 3 major rendering engines. Hopefully it will level out with at least 3 browsers having roughly equal market share.

  18. Mage Silver badge

    Percentages on a quiet site:

    IE 6.0 20.44

    Firefox 3.6 13.95

    IE 8.0 11.49

    Jyxobot/1 5.73

    IE 7.0 5.29

    Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; SiteBot/0.1; + 3.86

    IE 5.5 2.32

    Firefox 4.0 2.27

    Opera 9.0 2.12

    Opera 8.0 2.05

    IE 9.0 1.41

    Firefox 3.5 1.14

    Firefox 3.0 0.97

    Safari 5.0 0.94

    Chrome 8.0 0.84

    iPhone 0.82

    Chrome 11.0 0.77

    Chrome 10.0 0.75

    Firefox 5.0 0.71

    IE Generic 0.7

    ?? 0.65

    Chrome 12.0 0.64

    Chrome 7.0 0.62

    Opera 7.0 0.6

    Opera 7.1 0.59

    The search bots are the highest :(

  19. scarshapedstar


    "Chrome's three chief rivals are all more sophisticated products."

    Firefox, yes, but only because of DownThemAll.

    IE, WTF?

    I'm not even sure who's in third place, Safari or Opera or something, but who cares...

  20. Bunglebear

    Chrome for the common man?

    Chrome is a favourite for non-tech savvy users. Whatever it is sending to Google (and it probably sends a lot) it also happens to be minimalistic, quick and easy to use, all things the average techno-pleb will like. FF is doing a Netscape, getting fat, bloated and slow via feature creep; IE has such a bad rep anyone with an ounce of computer nous will remove it immediately. Which leaves Chrome.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Exactly the point

      What we seem to have on here are two sorts of Chrome detrators, most of whom seem to be FF users.

      There are those in anti-Google camp who believe Google to be and evil monopoly (fair enough) who use Chrome to spy on everything users do. How many of these people do you suppose use other Google products, like maybe their search engine? How many of these people do you suppose have bothered to think about what would happen to FF were it not so heavilly funded by Google?

      The other camp are the ones who love FF because of all it's bells and whistles and buttons and add ons and what have you. Take a look at the rest of the world guys. Look at the cameras people use, for example. Yes you can have a DSLR with more bells and whistles than a bell and whistle warehouse, or you can have a little pocket snapper. Most people go for the latter and seldom use what few bells and whistles it does have. Most people think of their browsers the same way. You can think of yourselves as the DSLR users of the browser world, if that makes you feel better. DSLR users may think of themselves as superior to compact users, but it doesn't change the fact that compact cameras (and indeed phone cameras) massively outsell DSLRs.

      This report isn't saying that Chrome is better than FF (so you can calm down now) it's just saying it's more popular. Lady Gaga has probably sells more than BB King, that doesn't mean she's better. Popularity <> Quality. OK?

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