Firefox Overtaken By Chrome In The UK

By | August 1, 2011 | 31 Comments


Firefox Overtaken By Chrome In The UKGoogle’s first product that has been advertised on TV in the UK, Google Chrome, has become more popular than Firefox. Seems like advertising works!

Yes, that’s right. Chrome is now the second most used web browser in the UK after having overtaken Firefox. That is, according to StatCounter. Being only just ahead of Firefox, Chrome currently possesses 22 percent of UK users. Internet Explorer, however, still has more market share than both of them combined, lying at 45 percent.

Going by what the man behind Chrome has to say, the key to browser success is speed.

Speed is a fundamental part of it, but it’s also about the minimal design and the way it handles security. If you as a user try to load a webpage and it feels snappy, it’s really hard to go back [to another browser]. It has shown that people spend more time interacting with the web. – Lars Bak, Google engineer responsible for Chrome


About (Author Profile)


Being passionate about software, Armin joined FavBrowser.com in early 2011 and has been actively writing ever since. Having accepted the challenge, he also enjoys watching anime, indulging in good books, staying fit and healthy, and trying new things.

  • Asknobody

    Don’t cry for me Mozilla, The truth is I’ve already left you. All through my wild days, My joy existence, I keep my browsing, Please keep your distance

  • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

    It isn’t true… It’s just about ads, not speed…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5F7DFC3FHUM4SYSW5J4XSQ2KSA I

    tried chrome but continue to dislike it due to the minimalist stripped out gui …. don’t notice any speed difference with it myself!

    • http://twitter.com/bricky149 Shane Bundy

      I have Firefox, Chrome and Opera on my Windows 7 PC.

      Firefox Is Fast
      Chrome Feels Fast
      Opera Is Not As Fast, But Is Getting Faster

      • Asknobody

        Firefox is fast – for memory leaks, nobody can stop them, that’s how fast they are
        Chrome feels fast
        Opera is not as fast as Firefox for memory leaking but is feeling faster than Chrome

      • Anonymous

        You are all wrong.

        IE 9 is fast. Click loads.

        Chrome – click loads the well chrome then loads the different elements. (It doesnt seem to load everything at once like IE. You need to wait)

        Opera – well. You click wait a sec or two then loads.

        Too bad IE doesnt have real extension just accelerators.

  • IE & Opera FanBoy

    Mozilla & Opera … Create something that is Snappier than Chrome!!
    Increase the bar for healthier competition.

    • Mikah

      The latest Opera build is very fast loading pages seems  as fast as Chromium loading pages very snappy.

      • hvered

        until they fix the “redraw instantly” bug +implementing the HWA+improve javascript/dom/css(again)

        also dont forget the the latest build is PRE-ALPHA were not even an alpha of 12 yet

        its been a month since 11.50 release and no .1 version is coming like 11.51 or something

        • Anonymous

          Yeah what is up with that. Opera first loads the text than CSS.

          • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

            I like Opera loads texts *with more priority* than CSS.

          • Anonymous

            Maybe when I was on dialup.

            But why does Opera have a “No images” mode when you – (as you say) prioritize text then abort the connection.

            What a waste of a feature.

            Jokes aside it is not the correct behaviour. Makes it look like the browser is having a fit.

          • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

            Prioritize text over other elements: it’s useful for when your connection is good but gets bad in the moment (or you simply want to do what I describe next…), you get the text and hyperlinks soon to write something fast (or stop loading), click and go to the next page you’re geading to.

            Download no images option: it’s useful for when your connection is actually bad or you don’t want the images to be loaded for saving more time / money, or simply doesn’t want the images.

          • Anonymous

            I am in Australia. Of the developed nations we have the worse internet speeds. We are also disadvantage due to the majority of “popular” sites being hosted overseas and routing information isn’t always the best.

            However I am lucky getting 1.6MB/s (14000kbps) downloads from local sites. This is more than enough for overseas sites (with speedtest for america giving me an average 500KB – 4000kbps)

            I am also on one of the (what people here consider) worse ISP’s having issues with continuity and signing up too many users on the one exchange.

            My point being is that unless you are on dialup and have an even flakier connection that drops out 20 times a day than this Opera “feature” is of no use.

            I am on ADSL2+

          • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

            I don’t get your comment actually…  
            I’m sure the feature has the uses I said or more… And the speed you cited is still a good connection…

          • Anonymous

            Yes. It seems you do not get it.

            I’m saying this isn’t necessary if people are getting these (what is considered) normal speeds. It might only be usefull for very slow connections (use Turbo instead) or if you as you say have an unreliable connection.

            The text flashes for the briefist of moments before the CSS comes rolling in.

            You got the father of CSS working there. Why is it loading slow?

          • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

            It isn’t loading slow, it prioritizes text over the other elements (prioritize doesn’t means download all text before other elements, it means text and other elements are loaded in parallel but text has more bandwidth allocation) because of the situations I cited.

      • IE & Opera FanBoy

        Opera start time is very bad. IE & Chrome loads almost instantly in my computer.

  • IE & Opera FanBoy

    Seems like Mozilla is already working on this, See here http://people.mozilla.com/~shorlander/ux-presentation/ux-presentation.html 

    • Asknobody

      Copying IE address filed? Mozilla you have to be kidding me.. :D

  • kls

    Chrome is great, but without the massive marketing it would take less than 5%.

    • Dante

      Like Mozilla Firefox without Google. 

      • Pseudo555

        Like Opera today : No ads -> No use :/

  • Guesty Guest

    Firefox 7 and 8 are the versions where the issues around memory usage, responsiveness of the UI and general speed of loading the browser and loading pages etc will be addressed.

    The images linked to in the post by IE & Opera Fanboy are just UI mockups. That’s just the way that the browser COULD
    look and says nothing about performance. I don’t mind what Mozilla do
    looks wise as long as they give the user full ability to customise it and change it to how they want it. When the UI becomes locked like Chrome’s is when Mozilla will have taken a wrong turn.

    The main things that Mozilla and everybody else should be focusing
    on are speed, security and stability. After that the should be looking at new technologies and compatibility, HTML5 and hardware acceleration etc. Playing around with the UI so much is lame. Maybe Mozilla think that it’s something that they could become market leader in, but even if they do, who’s to say it’s any good, and Mozilla don’t have the marketing power to shout about it anyway, so it won’t make any difference.

    It’s funny to say that different browsers are copying each other regarding UI. There
    are only a limited number of elements that are now displayed on the
    screen and only a certain number of places that they can be positioned
    without being completely nonsensical, so to have a handful of large
    technology companies all coming to the same conclusions about something
    so limited isn’t exactly surprising.

    As people above have mentioned, marketing is a massive part of Chrome’s success. If any of the other browsers had a marketing campaign as prevalent as Chrome’s they would see a dramatic uplift in market share.

    Google fund Mozilla. They do not promote Mozilla. Two very different things. You can have all the funding and behind the scenes ability you want, but if the general public do not even know that your browser exists, then they won’t use it.

    • Asknobody

      Firefox always have a massive advertisement campaign because lots of geeks were shoving FF in every computer they could have hands on. But now those days are over. More and more geeks are shoving Chrome. For majority people Chrome is good enough, so why would they need to get back to FF? There is no reason. And won’t be. It’s game over for Mozilla. They got their chances, but devs were lazy as in Netscape development. They fought that nobody can bring better alternative to IE for masses. They fought that geeks will stay loyal to them forever. Because FF is cool, FF is anti-IE, FF is open source . And they were wrong. Mozilla soon will join Nokia into race to oblivion. With so much money every year.. how they fu#$ed up.. it’s just unbelievable.. Poor management, lazy devs, no strategy. 

      • Anonymous

        I used to push FF too. But now it’s usually Chrome — it’s simpler for beginners and intermediate users. Those I put onto FF are still using it. Myself, I use Opera.

        FF is now playing a stupid catch-up game with Chrome’s version numbers, and even copied its UI to try and stay relevant.

        • Anonymous

          Firefox has an identity crises. It coppies from Opera then Chrome. It is worse than what the folks at Maxthon are doing. Atleast they have the decency to shift things around.

          • Armin

            What exactly are the folks at Maxthon doing?

          • Anonymous

            Havent you followed them?

            They started off with the IE shell and incorprated nearly every feature Opera had. Probally the first browser to “borrow” speed dial.

            They have recently improved by not just borrowing but imporivng or making features their own.

            C’mon man I got 2 likes. I must be RIGHT! Right!?

      • Guesty Guest

        I know what you mean about the geeks shoving Firefox. I guess I am one of them. But the only people I have shoved it on are my parents (they were using IE8 for gods sake!) and my housemate. I don’t know what anybody else is doing.

        I appreciate that ‘geeks’ may now be shoving Chrome, but you’ll also find that lots of “non-geeks” are ‘shoving’ Chrome.

        I was recently at a house party and a girl who didn’t seem at all geeky, said, in the middle of a conversation about the internet (Twitter and Facebook to be precise) “Has anyone tried Google Chrome, it’s really good.”, then another girl said that she had seen it advertised and asked the original girl if she should give it a go and the original girl said yes, and that it was faster and had Google built into it (her words not mine).

        That is the effect of advertising. It’s so powerful that people who aren’t anywhere near geeky enough to look at or post on websites like this one or even know half of what we all know, end up discussing the merits of Google Chrome, if only for about 30 seconds at a party that had nothing to do with the internet.

        Three other examples of the advertising that I have seen for Google Chrome:

        1. Back on 28th May this year I was watching the Champions League Final. To put it in perspective, it’s probably the second biggest soccer game on the planet behind the World Cup Final. It may not be big in America but I can assure you that a massive percentage of Europe was watching. In the half time advert break on the TV, what was the first advert – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4vkVHijdQk

        Now even if that advert only went out to a fraction of the people watching, it’s still going to be hitting at least 50 million people – That’s across the UK, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany just to name the obvious countries.

        When was the last time Firefox or Opera advertised on the TV at such a prominent moment to so many people with such a well designed advert?

        2. I was setting up a new laptop for my Mum a few weeks back and when I went to download Adobe Acrobat Reader for her as it wasn’t already on there. At the point of download there was a checkbox that was ticked, that downloaded and installed Google Chrome as well as Adobe Acrobat Reader. I tried it on my laptop but the option didn’t come up because I already have Chrome installed.

        But the point is this. Adobe, not exactly a small brand, pushing Google Chrome hadn in hand with one of their flagship products. Why doesn’t Adobe push anyone else?

        3. I was in London last weekend seeing a friend. When I was waiting on the platform form at one of the tube stations (tube is like the subway in New York) I noticed that there was a big TV screen playing adverts. What was on it? And ad for Google Chrome. I only saw the last 5 seconds of it when all the different Google product logos exploded out from the Chrome logo and then get sucked back into it, but it was enough for me to know it was about Google Chrome.

        I have also found this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8ZjcLFyEL0

        The number of people that pass through a tube station and ride those escalators each day is insane. Each of them being bombarded with Google Chrome adverts on the way to and from work. Each of them becoming another potential new Chrome user that will then become another person who spreads the message of Chrome by word of mouth to their friends and family who also try Chrome and then tell their friends and colleagues…………and so it continues.

        Google has the likes of Google.com and Google.co.uk to push Chrome if it wants and it can always cover YouTube in adverts because it owns that rather famous website as well.

        I remember in my old job there was people using IE7 and IE8 and whenever they went to the Google homepage, they would get an advert in the top right hand corner of the page encouraging them to try Google Chrome.

        But the main thing is, as well as all the internet promotion, that Google Chrome is the only browser that is getting massive advertising exposure through MEDIUMS OTHER THAN THE INTERNET.

        Even if Firefox or anyone else still had all of the geeks you mention working as hard as they could to spread the word of Firefox or any other browser, they have their work cut out for them, they really do, because the Chrome adverts never sleep.

        • 通闹 黄

          You’re basically right, google has pushed chrome to “normal” people very hard and that must have contributed a lot to the growth of chrome’s market share. but what would happen if opera has the money google has and they push opera like google had with chrome? I bet that if there were people to chat about opera, like the girl you mentioned did at that party, they would say: DON’T BELIEVE THAT AD, THAT’S TOTALLY HYPE, STICK WITH YOUR IE!