Firefox 4 Downloads Continue to Trounce Internet Explorer 9's
Although its market share stayed stagnant for much of 2010, Mozilla's Firefox browser appears to have a new lease on life with its new version 4. As we noted, only 24 hours after its release Firefox version 4 was eclipsing download numbers for Microsoft's Internet Explorer 9 browser, and evidence keeps rolling in that global enthusiasm for the new version of Firefox is no flash in the pan.
As VentureBeat reports, based on data from NetApplications:
"As of March 26, Firefox 4 was seeing a 3.64 percent share of browser usage after only being available for 5 days. IE9, which launched just a week earlier had 1.78 percent after 12 days. The numbers are a clear sign that Mozilla’s hard work has paid off for Firefox 4 and that IE9 will be at a disadvantage for some time since it runs on far fewer platforms (it only supports Windows Vista and Windows 7)."
That last part is important. Mozilla has steadily pursued a cross-platform strategy with Firefox and the new version 4 has pulled down strong reviews for the Windows, Mac and Linux versions. Mozilla also did more testing than ever with this release to ensure that extensions would work seamlessly with the new version. As of this writing, Mozilla's download counter is reporting almost 43 million downloads of its new browser.
VentureBeat is concluding that "the news also further emphasizes the fact that Firefox’s big browser competitor this time around is Google Chrome, not IE9," and that conclusion seems irrefutable. Of course, that means that open source browsers are now defining innovation in one of the most important application categories. Don't look for that to change any time soon.
Firefox 4 is available for the Mac, Windows and Linux, and is available in 75 languages. You can get it here.