Feeds

Mozilla: Windows 7 browser bungle cost us nine MILLION downloads

And look who's more and more popular - IE!

High performance access to file storage

Microsoft's Internet Explorer clawed back some of its share of the desktop web-browser market in October, as it stood accused of costing rival Firefox valuable downloads by Windows users.

Meanwhile, both Mozilla's Firefox and Google's Chrome have slipped in the browser rankings.

Firefox-maker Mozilla blamed its dip on the missing browser selection screen in Windows 7, an oversight it reckons has cost it millions of Firefox downloads.

Microsoft's web browser finished the month sitting on 54.13 per cent of the world's desktop computers, according to Net Applications. It's the first time Explorer has been in the 54-per-cent range since June. IE scored 53.63 per cent in September.

IE 9 is reported to have a share of 20.11 per cent. Mozilla's Firefox and Google's Chrome, meanwhile, both slipped: Firefox dipped beneath 20 per cent for the first time in years, with 19.99 per cent, down from 20.08 per cent in September. Chrome scored 18.55 per cent, down from 18.86 per cent in the previous month.

Moz claims Microsoft’s failure to include an EU-mandated selection screen in Windows 7 that allows users to install third-party web-browsers has cost Mozilla between six and nine million Firefox downloads. Mozilla’s Harvey Anderson said that daily downloads of Firefox dropped by 63 per cent to a low of 20,000 over a 15-month period. After the browser ballot screen was reinstated in Windows, downloads shot up by 150 per cent to approximately 50,000.

Microsoft was ordered by the European Union to offer users a choice of browsers in Windows 7 under the terms of a 2009 antitrust case. The selection screen touts IE alongside Firefox, Chrome and Opera, but it emerged Microsoft had not actually offered the screen since the rollout of the Windows 7 Service Pack 1 in February 2011. The software giant blamed the omission on a “technical error” and apologised in July this year, but 28 million PCs had missed the browser ballot screen.

Microsoft developed a software fix on July 2, a day after discovering the omission, and began distributing the fix to PCs running the Windows 7 SP1 a day later.

Regulators last month sent Microsoft a formal list of objections and said the company had breached its commitment to offer users a choice of browsers.

Writing on his website, Anderson said: “After accounting for the aggregate impact on all the browser vendors, it seems like this technical glitch decreased downloads and diminished the effectiveness of the remedy ordered in 2009.” ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE
Pre-Update versions of new Windows version will no longer support patches
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed
Windows 7 making some gains on XP Death Day
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.