Synthetic Monitoring

Simulate visitor interaction with your site to monitor the end user experience.

View Product Info


Simulate visitor interaction

Identify bottlenecks and speed up your website.

Learn More

Real User Monitoring

Enhance your site performance with data from actual site visitors

View Product Info


Real user insights in real time

Know how your site or web app is performing with real user insights

Learn More

Infrastructure Monitoring Powered by SolarWinds AppOptics

Instant visibility into servers, virtual hosts, and containerized environments

View Infrastructure Monitoring Info
Comprehensive set of turnkey infrastructure integrations

Including dozens of AWS and Azure services, container orchestrations like Docker and Kubernetes, and more 

Learn More

Application Performance Monitoring Powered by SolarWinds AppOptics

Comprehensive, full-stack visibility, and troubleshooting

View Application Performance Monitoring Info
Complete visibility into application issues

Pinpoint the root cause down to a poor-performing line of code

Learn More

Log Management and Analytics Powered by SolarWinds Loggly

Integrated, cost-effective, hosted, and scalable full-stack, multi-source log management

 View Log Management and Analytics Info
Collect, search, and analyze log data

Quickly jump into the relevant logs to accelerate troubleshooting

Learn More

Browser wars revisited

The “Browser Wars” is an ongoing struggle between three, maybe four actors.

Last year, Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer each dominated two regions of the world.

Now, Internet Explorer and Safari keep losing ground, and one browser strengthens its claim to the web browsing throne. Which browser that is comes as no surprise, but some other developments may.

We hereby present this year’s update to the desktop browser wars. First, we give you an overview of the current standings worldwide before we go in to the different regions one by one.

Browser wars by region

Google Chrome is now the most popular browser in four out of six regions around the world. Only users in North America and Oceania seem to still prefer Internet Explorer over Chrome.

Browser usage worldwide february 2013
You can download a larger version of this chart

Browser usage world wide 2011 2013
You can download a larger version of this chart.

It was only two years ago that Internet Explorer was the dominant browser in the world with about 45% of desktop usage. Today, its share is around 30% and falling.

During the same period, Chrome and Safari are the only two browsers in the top five that have gained in popularity.

Browser version ww top 10

Google has with Chrome achieved a very high efficiency in keeping users’ browsers up to date. Chrome’s total usage share is 37% compared to Chrome version 25.0, which, by itself has 33%.

Internet Explorer 10.0, released in August 2012, has yet to reach any significant usage share worldwide. Maybe this is because it only runs on the later versions of Windows.

Let us now take a closer look at the different regions.

Web browser usage in Africa

Since last year, Chrome has taken over the lead in Africa from Firefox. The biggest loser in this region is Internet Explorer that has fallen from 29% to “only” 18%. Firefox has the second highest usage rate in Africa at 37%, compared to almost 40% last year.

Browser usage africa 2013

Browser version africa top 10

Together with South America, Africa is the only region where Firefox 3.6 is still in the top 10. One explanation to this could be that 3.6 was the last version of Firefox before Mozilla started its 6-week rapid release schedule.

Web browser usage in Asia

Chrome has extended its lead in Asia. But perhaps even more interesting is that the “Others” have grown from 1% last year to 3% this year. The browsers with the largest usage shares in this category are Android (0.95%), Yandex (0.56%) and Soguo Explorer (0.51%).

Browser usage asia 2013

Browser version asia top 10

When a new release of Chrome appears, the previous version seems to die rather quickly. In Asia we can se one exception to this. There, Chrome 21.0 is still one of the ten largest browser versions.

Web browser usage in Europe

Last year, Firefox was the leading browser in Africa and Europe. In both regions, it appears that Chrome has increased in usage at the expense of Internet Explorer.

At 2% usage share, Europe, together with Africa, is also the strongest region for Opera.

Browser usage europe 2013

Browser version europe top 10

Web browser usage in North America

North America is still Internet Explorer’s stronghold, and even though it is getting smaller there to, the decline is not as rapid as elsewhere. Over the year, its usage share has fallen to 39% from 40%. Chrome is in second place at 28%.

Browser usage north america 2013

Browser version north america top 10

Internet Explorer may be the most used browser in North America, but when it comes to individual browser versions Chrome 25.0 is at the top of the list with 24.8%.

There are only two versions of Chrome on the list (24.0 and 25.0), but three versions of Internet Explorer (8.0, 9.0, and 10.0).

Web browser usage in Oceania

Internet Explorer also leads the browser usage in Oceania, but for how long? The gap between Chrome at 29% and Internet Explorer at 33% is getting smaller.

Oceania is the only region where Safari trumps Firefox, reaching the third place with 19% usage share. Including Safari iPad, four of the top ten browser versions are Safari in this region.

Browser usage oceania 2013

Browser version oceania top 10

Web browser usage in South America

If the Browser Wars would really be called just that, Chrome would already have won decisively  in South America.

At 59% usage share for Chrome, the gap to Internet Explorer at 20% and Firefox at 19% is huge.

Browser usage south america 2013

Browser version south america top 10

The browser wars continue

The choice of web browser is for some a very personal decision. Perhaps you have your own personal favorite and try to convince others about its merits. For now it seems like the flavor of the year is Google Chrome for a big chunk of users. This may change, but probably not anytime soon.

Do you have a personal favorite web browser you usually stick to over time? Or do you switch between browsers or even use several browsers? Please let us know via Twitter or in the comments below.

Data: For this article we used web browsing usage share numbers from StatCounter, which are based on visitor statistics averaged from 3+ million websites. In August 2012, StatCounter’s global sample consisted of over 17.1 billion page views.

Image top by Shutterstock

Introduction to Observability

These days, systems and applications evolve at a rapid pace. This makes analyzi [...]

Webpages Are Getting Larger Every Year, and Here’s Why it Matters

Last updated: February 29, 2024 Average size of a webpage matters because it [...]

A Beginner’s Guide to Using CDNs

Last updated: February 28, 2024 Websites have become larger and more complex [...]

The Five Most Common HTTP Errors According to Google

Last updated: February 28, 2024 Sometimes when you try to visit a web page, [...]

Page Load Time vs. Response Time – What Is the Difference?

Last updated: February 28, 2024 Page load time and response time are key met [...]

Monitor your website’s uptime and performance

With Pingdom's website monitoring you are always the first to know when your site is in trouble, and as a result you are making the Internet faster and more reliable. Nice, huh?



Gain availability and performance insights with Pingdom – a comprehensive web application performance and digital experience monitoring tool.

Start monitoring for free