Browsers Market Share for the Year 2008

By | January 8, 2009

Previous year were great for some of the web browsers and not so good for Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer.

Since it’s now 2009, let’s sum up all the market share reports and check final results.

Internet Explorer lost 7.32% of its market share
Firefox gained 4.37% of the market share
Safari increased its market share by 2.11%
Google Chrome went from 0 to 1.04%
Opera gained 0.09% of the market share
Despite “Dead” Netspace Navigator, it lost only 0.04% of its market share
Opera Mini increased its market share by 0.04%

Source: NetApplications


About (Author Profile)

Vygantas is a former web designer whose projects are used by companies such as AMD, NVIDIA and departed Westood Studios. Being passionate about software, Vygantas began his journalism career back in 2007 when he founded Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.

Comments (14)

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  1. Opera gained 0,09%… well half a loaf is better than no bread ;)

  2. anonymous says:

    Well, this seems more of the hand-made Net Applications crappy stats. At least specify the source and the market target because “Browsers Market Share for the Year 2008” seems too conclusive and too global to be accurate.

  3. Tiago Sá says:

    Opera didn’t gain. Opera never gains. It hangs in there.

    For some reason. It’s a perfectly good browser (better than chrome or safari) and nobody seems to care about it. Maybe it’s because it has no unique selling point like chrome or firefox does…

  4. Chris says:

    @Tiago Sá: where on earth are you getting that from?

    According to Opera’s financial report (which is required by law to be truthful), Opera’s user base increased by 55% from Q3 2007 to Q3 2008.

    It also went from 20 million users to 30 million users during the last few months of 2008.

    So Opera did gain, contrary to what you may believe.

    No unique selling points, except being smaller, faster, more secure, and with more and better integrated features? Come on…

  5. Is this US data?

    I’ve just done some research on International browser usage covering United Kingdom, France, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, South Africa and Australia aggregated over 12 months.

    It’s pretty consistent with your results for IE and FF with roughly an 80/20 split but FF does hit about 30% in Germany and France.

    Tiago Sá, Opera usage does score significantly higher in Norway, about 9%, but you’d expect that!

  6. Chris says:

    But seriously, why does anyone quote Net Apps these days? Read this and you’ll see that it’s all bogus:

    In fact, all browser stats are crap. Opera’s aggressive caching alone makes them useless because other browsers will lead to far more “hits” for each visit.

    And I won’t even go into detail about the hundreds of sites Opera needs to do browser spoofing or custom JavaScript patches for!

  7. Chris,

    Not sure why others are quoting them, but back in 2007 when I started to do this kind of reports, their data was more accurate.

    By the way, they are working on their end now to increase share data accuracy in russia and some europe countries. As that’s pretty much the main reason why Opera has only 0.71 of the market share in NetApps.

  8. Chris says:

    @Vygantas Lipskas

    Are they working on not dishonestly editing their data multiple times without notice and not lying about their statistics?

  9. FataL says:

    Browsers Market Share ******in US***** for the Year 2008

    This is mostly US statistics.

  10. Tiago Sá says:

    @ Chris

    Opera is not smaller than Firefox, and it’s not faster. More features? Sure, they’re better integrated, but it has way less features. And when I talk about never increasing, it’s because they’ve been there for YEARS, around the “just almost 1%”…

    @ Andy

    Firefox scores 55% on Norway, if I remember correctly. Or was it Finland? I forget.

  11. anon says:

    Net Applications is not US only. It’s the largest survey of its kind and it’s very much global. No other survey comes close to the 140+ million unique visitors and so it’s the most accurate global measure that exists.

    Opera is definitely growing more users, but unfortunately for them they’re not gaining any faster than the growth of the Web itself (more people coming online) so their market share is static.

  12. Chris says:

    @Tiago Sá

    Opera is smaller. Compare the English installers. And Opera can run comfortably on slow mobile phones, whereas this is impossible for Firefox. They are working on it, but the requirements will be much higher than Opera’s

    Opera is faster in real-world usage. Chrome is faster than Opera again, but Opera is definitely much faster than Firefox when rendering most sites. Opera’s UI is faster than both Chrome and Firefox.

    If you read the articles i linked you you will see why Opera is reported as standing still. Remember, Net Applications used to report Opera at 5%, and then edited it overnight to be 0.0something. The same happened again when Opera+Opera Mini were approaching 2%. They edited their stats and sent both back to 0.0something.

    Opera does not have 55% in Norway or Finland.

  13. Chris says:


    Net Applications is basically US only, as they admitted if you had bothered to read these before commenting:

    It is not the most accurate, as the link also shows. It claims that Chrome has more users than Opera despite the fact that Chrome had 10 million users while Opera had 30 according to both companies at the time.

    Again, read the link. Net Applications is useless, their stats are dishonest, and they are actively manipulating their own stats and dumping Opera down on a regular basis when it starts going above 1%.

  14. Chris says:

    Bottom line: You are extremely naive if you take Net Applications’s word for their own accuracy!

    “No other survey comes close to the 140+ million unique visitors and so it’s the most accurate global measure that exists.”

    Just because they CLAIM this and that doesn’t make it so.

    And even if they do reach 140+ million unique visitors, that STILL doesn’t mean that their methodology is sound. Which, as demonstrated, it isn’t.