August 10, 2015
The Internet and the way we use it has changed in the last 15 years. What once used to be a much more simple community of AOL Instant Messenger users and nascent hackers has quickly evolved into a global network of Facebook addicts, email avoiders, and digital content consumers. Apropos, we’ve seen our adoption of technologies and platforms evolve over time. In a recent visualization created by Jody Sieradzki, we get a glimpse of how the world quickly transitioned from Internet Explorer to Google Chrome as the most popular browser.
Using data from Stat Counter, we can see how the most popular web browser in the world has changed between 2008 and 2015. 2008 is a significant year – it was the year when Google unveiled its Google Chrome web browser. Prior to that time, Internet Explorer was the industry standard – a mess that was used by most on both personal and work computers. While Firefox – by that time – had already been offered as a free web browser for four years prior, we can see from the GIF below that it never really gained the level of momentum that Chrome has managed to achieve (with the exception of some significant growth in the eastern hemisphere between 2010 and 2011).
Some notable things to point out include: the sudden popularity of Safari in Greenland in 2014; Opera’s sudden popularity in 2009 and then its quick disappearance from the map within two years; and the near global popularity of Google Chrome. But, while that’s great for Google, it’s not necessarily great for its users. In recent months, users have experience their fair share of Chrome crashes, leading to a growing movement away from the popular web browser to Firefox, it’s now-closest competitor. Over the next year, it wouldn’t be surprising if we found all those yellow areas turn to orange.
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