Market data from Net Applications reveals Google's Chrome browser closed 2010 with a marketshare of 9.98 percent, up from 9.26 percent in November 2010. Chrome's rise comes at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer which saw its marketshare decline from 58.44 percent to 57.08 percent month-over-month, while Firefox remained relatively flat at 22.81 percent, compared to 22.76 percent in November. Apple's Safari owns 5.89 percent of the market while Opera takes the fifth spot with 2.23 percent. The remaining 2.01 percent is split between all other browser makers.
Chrome's gains have come largely at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer, whose usage share has been dropping for years, but there's also a ray of hope for Redmond. IE9, which embodies Microsoft's ambition to build a cutting-edge browser once again, is showing signs of real adoption with usage that grew from 0.4 percent in November to 0.5 percent in December, according to new statistics from Net Applications.
Fractions of a percent may sound insignificant, but with hundreds of millions of people using the Web, they actually represent a large number of real users. And in the current competitive market, browser makers are attuned to where the growth is occurring.