We know that "Browser Wars" started in late 1990s. Initially NetsCape Navigator gained more than 80% market share. But, within short period of time, NetsCape Navigator was completely destroyed by Internet Explorer (IE) as the Microsoft has distributed Internet Explorer with the Windows Operating system itself.
The earlier Internet Users didn't care about the Browsers. They just started using the browser which is available built-in with the Operating System. So, Internet Explorer gained more than 80% market share after destroying the Navigator.
And, the Internet Explorer started releasing new tags which didn't meet the standard to force the web developers to create non-standard web application to satisfy the Internet explorer which is used by majority of the users.
By doing these tricks, Microsoft was able to keep huge market share for the Internet Explorer. But this situation didn't continue for long time. Many people started using the open source Browser "Mozilla FireFox" which came with lot of good features as the result of NetsCape's decision to declare the Navigator code as Open Source once after it was defeated by Internet explorer.
Even though the Internet Explorer continues to be the leader in Browser market till today, the market share of Internet Explorer is getting decreased continuously.
You can refer the below graph which is showing the decreasing market share of the Internet Explorer. And, you can refer this browser stats also. And, you can see the Browsers timeline here.
From the above graph we can see that the Market share of Google Chrome is getting increased very fast.
These stats may not be accurate due to many factors. Mostly they are getting counted/calculated based on User-Agent string being sent with header of web request. But, this user agent value is NOT reliable. For example, most of the Anti-virus softwares send the request with User-Agent string of a popular web browser. Because some viruses behave differently for the actual browsers and for the virus scan requests. i-e The anti-virus program will pretend as the actual user to find the viruses.
These days, lot of applications are becoming web based applications. i-e We need not install them in our local computer. Instead, we can access them thro' the browsers. The fast development of Cloud technology helps to spread this trend widely.
For example, you can refer the web based Time Sheet application.
Even, Office tools such as Word processor and Spread Sheet are also available as web applications (e.g Google Docs) Already Google Gmail proved that web based application can be equivalent or even more convenient than the desktop email application such as Microsoft Outlook.
The emerging HTML5 helps to extend this trend further.
So, the importance of web browser is getting increased, and therefore the "Browser War" becomes more intensified.
Google is having plans to focus on the browser based operating system, and it already got good place in Mobile market by keeping Android as open source.
So, it looks like Google Chrome will dominate the browser market soon. What do you say? You can share your thoughts thro' the comments.
And, you can take this poll.
Browser usage varies in different geographic locations across the world.
- IE (Internet Explorer) has around 90% usage share in China and South Korea.
- FireFox has more than 60% usage share in Germany and Indonesia.
- Opera in the most popular browser in Belarus and Ukraine.
- And, Chrome is the most popular browser in Tunisia and Albanis.
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