Millions download latest Firefox browser

Mozilla download tracker Mozilla has been visualising the location of users as they download Firefox 4.

Related Stories

More than five million people have downloaded the latest version of Firefox since its release a day ago.

Mozilla, which makes the number two web browser, has been keeping a real-time map showing where in the world users are installing the software.

Despite the rapid uptake, downloads have been slower for version 4 than its predecessor.

Over the past year, Firefox's market share has declined slightly in the face of competition from Google's Chrome.

Firefox 4 was made available for download less than a month after Microsoft launched Internet Explorer 9, the latest version of its market-leading browser.

Both pieces of software promise users a faster, more secure online experience.

Firefox, like its rival, now makes extensive use of HTML 5 - the newest standard for the hypertext language used to build websites.

Both browsers also feature hardware acceleration for displaying web pages - drawing on the power of a computer's graphics processor to improve the speed of complex visuals.

Declining share

Within its first 24 hours, more than 5.5 million users had downloaded Firefox 4. However, that falls short of the 8 million who downloaded version 3 on its release day in 2008.

The lower figure may be explained by the widespread availability of pre-release versions of Firefox 4 in the months ahead of its launch.

Firefox has enjoyed rapid growth since it first appeared in 2004. At its peak, in 2009 it held a 24% market share, according to Netmarketshare.

However, by February 2011 its slice of the browser market had fallen to 21%.

At the same time, Google's Chrome browser has grown from 1% to 10%, according to the same figures.

Internet Explorer remains the dominant platform, although its fall has been the most precipitous - from 68% in March 2009 to 56% in February 2011.

Some analysts believe that Firefox could still secure a bigger piece of the increasingly fragmented market, especially among corporate users.

"Internet Explorer 9 is only for Windows Vista and 7. Two thirds of companies are still using Windows XP," said Ovum analyst Richard Edwards.

"If you want to make the most of the HTML 5 stuff that is out there then you have to go to IE9 and a Windows 7 upgrade or switch to Firefox.

"That may be a significant opportunity for Firefox," he said.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Technology stories

RSS

Features

  • Peaky Blinders publicity shotBrum do

    Why is the Birmingham accent so difficult to mimic?


  • Oliver CromwellA brief history

    The 900 year story behind the creation of a UK parliament


  • Image of Ankor Wat using lidarJungle Atlantis

    How lasers have revealed an ancient city beneath the forest


  • TheatreBard taste? Watch

    Are trailer videos on social media spoiling theatre?


  • Agents with the US Secret Service, such as this one, are responsible for guarding the presidentHard at work

    White House break-in adds to Secret Service woes


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.