Thursday, November 04, 2004

Browser Shares and Microsoft Antitrust

In my Antitrust class this morning, we discussed the Microsoft antitrust case [U.S. v. Microsoft Corp., 253 F.3d 34 (DC Cir. 2001).]. One of the topics involved market share. Somehow, I transitioned to browser share to look at how much of the browser-using market uses Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE). I even wrote my Antitrust prof. an e-mail on this. What follows is the e-mail text, with hyperlinks inserted instead of URL names.


Prof. [X], as an example of general browser share today, one can look at:

link - 75% IE.

The statistics are totals for a very popular weblog, Instapundit. I'm pretty confident the percentages are based on all visits since the blog first began using this statistic counter, so it's probably indicative of the past 3-4 years in this case. Also, the market for visitors is a relevant factor since Instapundit is a very intellectual website, and probably somewhat likely to draw at least a slightly higher than average number of geeks and knowledgable computer users.

As for the graph, IE is self explanatory. Firefox is a Mozilla-based browser that is gaining in popularity. (I use it. I highly recommend you check it out if so inclined.) Safari is the Mac-only (I think) inherent browser. That is, Apple, in it's most recent Operating System (OS X), included an integrated browser called Safari. Safari allows the user to not only browse the internet but similarly "browse" the hard drive and conduct searches. I've heard it's pretty good but haven't played with it since I eschew Macs.

In comparison, here's a link for the same statistics for Gizmodo: link

Notice a significantly lower number of IE users (53%), largely due to the geek/knowledgable-user factor mentioned above.

Another, more middle-of-the-road blog, the Daily Kos: link

I know nothing about this blog other than its statistics more closely resemble Instapundit's. 70% IE.

Also, fyi, I found these websites from this list of popular ones: link

Each of the ones I cite uses Site Meter to provide statistics.

Since I can't resist, The Slithery D: link

This is a law student's blog and looks like it's been up since some time in July 2004. Only 55% IE.

Another one, A Season of Mists: link

Another law student blog, it's been up since the very end of July. 71% IE.

A slightly older law student blog (since March of this year), Soupie's BBQ Daycare: link

58% IE there.

In contrast, a much older blog (since Aug. 2002), Jeremy's: link

87% IE.

With the premise that more technologically-inclined users will use browsers other than IE, maybe these statistics are indicative of the consumer populations reading the weblogs and how techno-friendly they are.

I'm having too much fun and spending too much time writing you an e-mail that's too long.


-- Alan


First note that I included my own blog (i.e. this one) in the e-mail. I figured why not. I don't post anything controversial about school (not that I really have anything controversial to post about school anyways).

If my premise and hypothesis are accurate, that means that the readers of this blog, in general, are more techno-friendly than those of Jeremy but less techno-friendly than those of Soupie and Dylan.

Come on guys & gals!!! Get with the program! Stop using IE and use a REAL browser, like Firefox! See that logo further down in the lefthand column? The one with the half-globe, fox ears and tail? CLICK ON IT! Get Firefox and use it!!! You'll thank me for it, I swear!!!

And if I see any of you using IE with this blog again, I WILL PULL OUT MY BASEBALL BAT AND BEAT THE EVER-LIVING CRAP OUT OF YOU. SLOWLY. Just an added incentive. Cheers!