It's official that Edge is number two. At least according to NetMarketShare.
The sound of muted rejoicing could be heard emanating from bedrooms and home offices around the Seattle area last week as the internet usage watcher published figures showing that Microsoft's browser had edged (sorry) ahead of Mozilla's Firefox to take a distant second place behind Google's Chrome on desktop computers.
Edge had been making steady progress over the last few months, finally passing Internet Explorer in December 2019 to take third place with 6.07 per cent of desktop browser share compared to 5.84 per cent.
By March, Firefox's share had dropped from 8.27 per cent in December to 7.19 per cent, allowing Edge to slip ahead with 7.59 per cent.
Leader Chrome also saw a slight rise, from 68.06 per cent to 68.50 per cent.
Microsoft famously ditched what is now "Legacy Edge" in favour of a Chromium-based future last year, the first fruits of which were made generally available in January. The gang will be hoping the small uptick in NetMarketShare's figures represents a trend as customers use its browser for something other than just downloading Chrome.
The trend, if not the positions, can be seen in the data of other analytics services, such as Statcounter, which showed Edge share growing to a barely detectable 0.57 per cent since its January debut, while Legacy Edge slipped. The Statcounter figures, however, still put Microsoft's great hope a distant fourth even when one combines the figures for both incarnations of Edge. Firefox remains comfortably second and Safari is third.
Overall, it does indeed appear that Microsoft's Edge is gaining ground, with the decline in usage of Legacy Edge more than offset by the rise in new Edge. Compared to Chrome, however, it's all little more than a rounding error – though the decline in Internet Explorer usage is encouraging.
However, once Microsoft finally replaces Legacy Edge once and for all in its flagship Windows operating system, that share should increase further.
Or users will continue to only open it once to download something from the competition. ®
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