Microsoft Edge overtakes Apple’s Safari to become the world’s second most popular desktop browser based on data provided by the web analytics service StatCounter.
In February, Microsoft Edge was on the verge of catching Safari with less than half a percentage point (9.54% to 9.84%) between the two browsers in terms of popularity among desktop users. The latest StatCounter data shows that the Edge is already used on 10.07% of desktops worldwide, up 0.46% from Safari; the latter fell to 9.61%.
Google Chrome still holds the lead with 66.58% of all desktop users. And Mozilla’s Firefox had only 7.87% of the share, a significant drop from the 9.18% share it had in February. The new data was first reported by MacRumors.
The advantage of Edge in other browsers differs significantly depending on the location. In the US, for example, Edge lags far behind Safari – Edge has only 12.55% market share, while Safari claims 17.1%. In Europe, Edge has long outpaced Safari by 11.73% and 9.36%, respectively.
Firefox has never had a big market share to begin with. And it has no marketing influence on either Microsoft or Google, which means lower brand awareness – and virtually none outside the technical community, according to Jack Gold, chief analyst at research firm J. Gold Associates.
“So I don’t think Firefox will ever be more than a niche alternative to the other guys,” Gold said.
Of course, the Safari bar is basically the default browser on Apple’s iPhone and iPad. With these devices, this is a completely different story. Chrome has 63.57%, Safari networks 24.82%, and the rest of the various browsers make up the rest.
Some web analytics services already have Edge even ahead of browsers – with the exception of the ever-dominant Chrome. For example, The latest data from Net MarketShare has Chrome with an eye-opening 73.24% market share, Edge with 12.93% and Firefox with 4.73%. Safari is not even among the top four browsers.
Taking the Edge is slow. Initially, it suffered from network performance and compatibility issues, which pushed many users to Chrome, according to Gold. Now, however, the Edge is relatively comparable to Chrome in terms of performance, largely because it is built on Chromium’s main engine.
In 2020, Microsoft restarted Edge, reworking it with the same browser code that powers Chrome. Microsoft has not only made Edge a copy of Chrome, but has also extended support to versions of Windows other than 10, including macOS and Linux.
“When Microsoft switched to the Chromium engine, Edge became much faster and more compatible with more websites that, due to the predominance of Google Chrome browsers, were designed to be compatible with Chrome rather than the older Edge (there were some unique requirements. for full compatibility), “Gold said.
Microsoft is also adding features to the Edge, such as improved security and privacy, “coupons” for those who use it for shopping, and performance improvements, Gold said.
Edge also doesn’t have some of the problems that earlier versions had when working with some websites.
“And you’re no longer forced to use Bing as a search engine,” Gold said. Although users have never been forced to use Bing, Microsoft is making it difficult to switch to Google.
Edge is also the default browser with Windows 10 and 11, so the improvements in it have less reason for users to switch. “I think a lot of people just don’t bother downloading Chrome. Edge does almost everything they want / need, ”Gold said.
Last June, Apple unveiled a major redesign of Safari at the company’s World Developer Conference (WWDC). However, many of these changes have been met with harsh criticism from users, who have described them as “counter-intuitive”.
Apple went through several iterations over the summer – both on mobile devices and desktops – and allowed users to largely revert to Safari’s previous design before the release of iOS 15, iPadOS 15 and macOS Monterey.
In February, Jen Simmons, an Apple evangelist and advocate for the Safari and WebKit Web Developer Experience team, went on Twitter to ask users for feedback on why Safari is unpopular and ask them to point out specific issues.
“Everyone in me mentions it [is] saying Safari is the worst, it’s the new IE, “Simmons tweeted at the time.
Hoping to get to the bottom of the rage, Simmons asked Twitter users to point out specific bugs and lack of support that frustrated them or made it difficult to create websites or apps. “Bonus points for links to tickets,” she wrote.
“Specifics that we can correct. Vague hatred is, frankly, super counterproductive, “she added.
Unlike some competing browsers, such as Firefox, Apple’s Safari updates are scarce, with major upgrades coming only once a year. So most new features are introduced in one instance. While this may be to the liking of those who don’t like frequent browser updates, it also means that Safari upgrades and / or fixes are rare.
In recent years, however, Safari has received a number of complaints about browser bugs, user interface and experience, and website compatibility. according to MacRumors.
In March, Apple has released Safari 15.4 betawhich is claimed to be “packed” with 70+ new features, such aslazy charging”Images to reduce page load time; a dialog element which is part of an application that the user interacts with to perform a task, such as a dialog box or window; and Cascading layerswhich offers users a way to organize styles, such as reset and default settings, to the highest-priority styles, such as components, utilities, and replacements.
However, even with improvements, Safari faces a climb.
Because Safari is specific to Apple, unless someone is a big fan of Apple, they probably don’t use Safari, Gold said.
“Windows machines are still much more popular than Macs, so the large number of computers means that Edge (and Chrome) have a huge installation advantage over Safari,” Gold said. “I didn’t see much Safari when learning Windows.”
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