Microsoft’s formerly dominant browser now lags behind Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox in usage, by one measure.
Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, long the world’s primary gateway to the web, has slipped to third place.
The Redmond company’s web browser in April trailed Mozilla Firefox in global usage for the first time, according to StatCounter.
Google Chrome continued to dominate, accounting for 60.5 percent of web use on personal computers, according to data released Tuesday by the Internet analytics firm. Firefox, developed by the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation, took 15.6 percent of the market, edging out Internet Explorer’s 15.5 percent.
Internet Explorer led the crucial market of web browsing, the gateway to search engines and other Internet services, for more than a decade after besting rival Netscape Navigator in the 1990s.
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It has been steadily losing interest in recent years, owing to a reputation for security flaws, as well as the company’s tiny presence in smartphones, where more and more people do their web surfing.
Microsoft rebooted its browsing efforts last year with the introduction of Microsoft Edge, a new browser packaged with Windows 10 when the new operating system was released.
So far, Edge doesn’t seem to have helped the company’s overall browser share, said Aodhan Cullen, chief executive of StatCounter, which includes Edge in its tally of Internet Explorer use.
StatCounter’s data, which is based on traffic to more than 3 million websites, is designed to measure usage, or the total number of Internet page views.
A rival web-sampling company, Net Applications, tracks unique users to websites. That method also has held bad news recently for Microsoft, showing Internet Explorer losing its global lead to Chrome for the first time in April. Firefox came in third in that report.