DaveNet: Tuesday, November 4, 1997; by Dave Winer.

blue ribbon Microsoft's Browser Numbers

From Yusuf Mehdi, yusufm@microsoft.com, in response to Working on Windows, this specific part...

I was talking to a VP at Netscape last week; he said that the largest group of Navigator users are on Windows 3.1. If that's true, Microsoft isn't all-powerful in this market. It's now over two years since the shipment of Windows 95. A lot of those 3.1 users upgraded to Netscape's browser before they upgraded to Microsoft's new user interface and Win32 compatibility. What's really going on?

Microsoft's Browser Numbers

Here is some data to your question of "What's really going on?" from your last newsletter. I conduct regular research of what browser people use and on what platforms for use in the marketing of Internet Explorer. The methodology is rigorous and projectable to the US population based on random digit dial phone interviews. The metric we use is that of "active Internet users" which we define as "having accessed the web in the last 2 weeks" from either home or work. By this method, I find:

There are 36 million people in the US who at any given time will say they have accessed the web in the last 2 weeks. Of this 36 million, 25 million say they use Windows 95 or Windows NT 4.0 while just over 5 million say they use Windows 3.1 and just under 5 million use a Macintosh.

Our share of Internet Explorer varies on each of these platforms with the highest being on Windows 95 and the lowest on the Macintosh. In the end, though, Netscape's share on Windows 3.1 is not high enough, nor our IE share on Windows 95 low enough, to justify Nav/Win31 users as Netscape's largest base of "active Internet users".

So what the data from the Netscape VP really says (at least to me) is that their share methodology differs significantly from ours in that they track share not by "active user" but by copies of Navigator downloaded or some other more liberal metric which likely overstates what is actually being used on a regular basis. It also reaffirms that with IE share higher on Windows 95 and the base of active users on Windows 95 growing, IE share will continue to trend up.

This page was last built on Tue, Nov 4, 1997 at 6:00:26 AM with Frontier. Internet service provided by Conxion. © copyright 1997 Dave Winer.