Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Browser Wars

Interesting story - Apple iPhone Browser Share Jumps 36% Christmas Week (AAPL) - from Silicon Alley Insider. While this number 36% jumps out at you, consider that it represents an increase from .42% to .57%. While I have no doubt that there are a huge number of users using the iPhone and iPod Touch to browse the web, I'm not sure that these numbers really tell the story. A more appropriate measure would be to see the growth trend, and to compare the market share with other browsers - particularly mobile browsers. Here's a figure I created from 2008 Q4 data Net Applications. You can see that while a .57% share seems small, it is an order of magnitude great than the nearest mobile browser competitor - Opera Mini. It will be interest to see what happens to the Blackberry share - currently statistically insignificant. I would expect the numbers to spike with sale of the Blackberry storm.

browser wars.png

Here's the data as presented by Silicon Valley Insider:

Some more data suggesting that Apple's (AAPL) iPhone had a good Christmas: Its browser market share jumped 36% last week, according to Net Applications, a Web stats company.

Specifically, the iPhone's browser share increased to 0.57% for the week ending Dec. 27, up 35.7% from a 0.42% share the week before. It's also up more than 50% from the iPhone's November average 0.37% share, Net Applications says. The company does not have year-over-year comparisons.

What does this mean?

  • Many people probably got new iPhones in late December, especially around Christmas.
  • Many people probably used their iPhones to surf on the Web Christmas week, including people with brand-new phones and people who already had iPhones but were home from work.
  • Many people probably used their work PC less on Christmas week, so at-home devices and mobile devices like the iPhone probably got an extra boost.

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