February 24, 2005
Has Firefox "Tipped"?
This bit below is part of a very good analysis of Firefox market share and market penetration. I highly recommend clicking through to the entire article if you're interested in Firefox market share. IE support costs may drive companies to switch to Firefox to reduce their support costs, thus opening up more distribution for Firefox.
So, will Firefox tip? How would we know if it had? Has it tipped already?
My gut feeling is that it has not hapened yet. The stats from W3Schools, westciv, and other developer oriented sites definitely suggest a major adoption by developers, the web's "early adopters" and "visionaries", not just in terms of testing and playing with Firefox, but in using it in their everyday use.
The difference between westciv's stats and those of w3schools I'd suggest reflects the different kinds of developer who use these sites. W3Schools users are more likely to be less advanced developers than westciv's (this is not a criticism of anyone, simply an observation about the different kinds of content the sites provide). I'd predict Slashdot's stats would show an even more marked adoption of Firefox over IE (which in part would reflect the larger user share of Linux among slashdot readers). Taco, any chance of publishing your stats?
But the rate of adoption in more mainstream use of Firefox appears considerably slower. This is not necessarily something to be discouraged about (if you, like me, and most web developers, want to see at least a significant non-IE browser at play to push innovation, and stop stagnation in browser development).
The Chasm and tipping point models of adoption would suggest that wild growth among the early adopters is a necessary precursor to more mainstream adoption. But it's not sufficient.
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