UK Web Focus (Brian Kelly)

Innovation and best practices for the Web

Firefox Use In UK Is Near The Bottom Of The League

Posted by Brian Kelly on 26 Feb 2008

Via a post on Seb Schmoller’s blog I came across an XiTi Monitor article which gives statistical data on usage of FireFox across Europe.

The news isn’t good for use supporters of the open source Web browser, with usage in the UK in December 2007 at 17.2%, with only Ukraine and the Netherlands below. The top three countries which make use of FireFox are Finland (45.4%), Slovenia (44.6%) and Poland (42.4%).

Firefox Usage Across Europe

I must admit I find these figures disappointing and also somewhat surprising. Last year I wrote a post entitled FireFox – The Researchers Favourite Application? in which I was confident the the clear superiority of FireFox over its competitors would lead to much greater use of FireFox as a platform, with increased use of FireFox plugins. Mark Sammons, however, responded by arguing that “Firefox is not Enterprise-ready enough to be considered for migration from IE” and Phil Wilson agreed with Mark’s comment: “I’m glad Mark wrote that comment because it’s exactly what I was going to write when I read your post Brian“.

The evidence, it seems, backs up Mark and Phil’s views – for whatever reasons, FireFox isn’t the success many of us would have hoped for within the UK. Sad, but true.

6 Responses to “Firefox Use In UK Is Near The Bottom Of The League”

  1. Code Gorilla said

    The problem is not one of technical ability, but of monopolistic advantage & human laziness:

    When one buys a PC, it comes with IE (IE 7, currently).
    When one buys a Mac, it comes with Safari.

    To use Firefox, the user (or whoever configures the machine) has to actively choose to go out and find the application and then install it.

    Given that a great number of computers are either owned by non-techies (ie, most home users) or managed in a business-model (corporate roll-out/managed desktop/etc), most web-browsing is probably by non-techies…
    We also know that people are pretty lazy (outside their sphere of interest) and thus they will almost certainly use the default browser on their computer: IE for a windows machine, Safari for a Mac.

    There is no doubt that Firefox is superior to IE – however is it the most technically competent browser (Opera may object to that), or is it just that it is the most popular browser by the tech-aware?

  2. […] Brian’s site I got to an article in XiTi Monitor regarding the latest statistics for Firefox use in Europe. The […]

  3. Or you could look at the onestat, er, stats where they say Firefox has a 12% share :)

  4. Mike said

    Doesn’t suprise me in the slightest, given IE as primary browser on Windows. In fact if anything I think it’s pretty high given that you have to explicitally choose it, as Code Gorilla says :-)

    Just goes to show, best ain’t always the most popular…(betamax)

  5. Yvonne said

    I love Firefox, but apparently it is difficult to roll it out on Active Directory; and as CodeGorilla and Mike said, you have to actively choose it, rather than receiving it as the default option. I wonder if the countries where it has more users also have a higher proportion of Linux users, as Firefox is already installed on Ubuntu.

  6. […] Firefox Use In UK Is Near The Bottom Of The League […]

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