Internet Explorer won’t be officially put out of its misery until next month, but its replacement, Microsoft Edge, is already gaining significant ground. According to web analytics provider StatCounter, it has officially surpassed Apple’s Safari browser as the second most popular option on desktop.
Although Microsoft Edge debuted in 2015, it was first built on a proprietary browser engine the company developed: an approach that would be short-lived. The original version of Edge failed to gain much ground amongst users, so just three years later, Microsoft announced that Edge would be rebuilt on the same Chromium code base as Google’s wildly popular Chrome browser. That now seems like a very wise decision, one that was no doubt aided by Microsoft’s decision to replace Internet Explorer with Edge as the default web browser in Windows 11.
Edge’s user base has slowly but steadily increased since Windows 11 was officially released to the public in October of last year, and according to StatCounter, it now holds a 10.07% market share on desktop machines, putting it in second place and just slightly ahead of Safari’s 9.61% share. Surprising no one, Google’s Chrome remains the desktop browsing champ, with a whopping 66.64% market share. Chrome’s dominance is still slowly growing, but Firefox, which is in fourth place, has recently seen a slight drop to a 7.86% share. Firefox’s market share was as high as 9.47% in February.
On mobile devices, however, Microsoft Edge’s market share is entirely insignificant. Google’s Chrome is once again the dominant choice, enjoying a 63.57% market share, with Apple’s iOS version of Safari, not surprisingly, doing much better than the macOS desktop version, with a 24.82% market share.
Across all platforms, Edge still trails both Chrome (64.36%) and Safari (19.13%) with a 4.07% market share, and Firefox is nipping at its heels with a 3.41% share. However, there is still a lot of potential for growth for Edge given the slow adoption rate of Windows 11. A significant amount of desktops and laptops still run Windows 10, which will be supported until 2025. As Microsoft convinces more users to upgrade to Windows 11, assuming they don’t know how to change their default browsers, they’ll also be automatically upgrading themselves to being Edge users as well.