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article imageChrome to dethrone Internet Explorer as most popular browser

By James Walker     Apr 4, 2016 in Technology
Google Chrome is now very close to becoming the world's most popular web browser. Internet Explorer and Google Chrome are about to swap places in the charts as Microsoft's aging browser continues to quickly fall out of favour with many consumers.
The March 2016 usage data from NetMarketShares reveals that Google Chrome now has a 39.09 percent share of the browser market, less than 3.5 percentage points away from Internet Explorer's 43.40 percent. Internet Explorer has fallen 1.39 percentage points in the past month while Chrome has risen 2.53 percentage points. It looks like Google is successfully attracting users away from Microsoft's browser at a rate that shows no signs of slowing down.
Internet Explorer has now been largely abandoned by Microsoft in favour of its new Edge browser. Edge has only a 3.55 percent share of the market though, less than Internet Explorer 9 at 4.56 percent. The latest version of Internet Explorer, IE11, accounts for 23.18 percent of browsers while the latest Chrome version, 49, represents 13.67 percent.
Google Chrome is now over seven years old. It has grown to become the second biggest web browser in a relatively short space of time. Users were initially attracted by its strong feature set, extensions support and high performance at a time when Internet Explorer was being neglected by a largely-unrivaled Microsoft.
Google seized the opportunity to show Microsoft what happens when a firm becomes complacent in the success of a product. Google has been proactive in releasing regular updates to Chrome, getting through 49 major versions in only seven years. Growth in other browsers such as Mozilla Firefox and Opera left Microsoft suddenly at risk of slipping behind.
After sitting untouched for years, Internet Explorer finally had a credible and fast growing rival, backed by the might of Google. Microsoft has struggled to catch up ever since, leading to the present day as Chrome is about to surpass it in overall market share.
If Chrome continues to increase its share at the current rate then it is likely to be the world's most popular browser by May. Internet Explorer is only going to decline over time as businesses upgrade to newer platforms and Microsoft pushes consumers towards its new Edge browser.
Updates planned for Edge this year include support for extensions, adding one of Chrome's most popular features to let users do more with the browser. Most existing Chrome extensions will run almost unmodified on Edge so developers are likely to bring their existing code to Windows.
Edge also boasts other unique features including direct ink annotation on webpages and integration with Microsoft's Cortana digital assistant. The browser is still struggling to find its feet though and is only available on Windows 10, a limitation that means its audience will always be smaller than that of Chrome.
More about Google, Google chrome, Chrome, Web browser, Internet explorer
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