Firefox 4 Downloads Exceed 6m In First Day

The latest version of Mozilla’s browser, Firefox 4, has enjoyed more than six millions downloads in the first 24 hours after launch.

Firefox 4’s launch record has smashed that of Internet Explorer 9 by more than double, as Microsoft saw only 2.4 million downloads when it released the software.

However, Firefox’s latest version is facing the challenge set by its predecessor, Firefox 3, which was installed over 8 million times within the first 24 hours of availability.

According to Mike Beltzner, Mozilla’s director of Firefox, the latest software promises a “super-duper fast” browser – substantially more than four times faster than Firefox 3.6.15 – and improved privacy as well as security. Just like Internet Explorer 9, Firefox 4 also makes extensive use of HTML 5.

Browser wars

Meanwhile, Mozilla Firefox is facing challenges from several browser rivals, particularly Google Chrome, whose market share has gone up from 10.7 percent in January to 10.9 percent last month.

Another big rival is Microsoft Internet Explorer, which still secures the top position in the browser war with its market share rising to 56.8 percent at the end of February. Its latest version – Internet Explorer 9 – has also been downloaded over 36 million times since the official launch in September 2010.

Despite a rapid growth since it first appeared in 2004, Firefox saw its slice of the browser market fall earlier this year, from 22.8 percent in January to 21.7 percent last month.

However, some analysts have expressed optimism that the platform can still secure a bigger piece of the market, especially among corporate users.

“Internet Explorer 9 is only for Windows Vista and 7. Two thirds of companies are still using Windows XP,” said Ovum analysts Richard Edwards. “If you want to make the most of the HTML 5 stuff that is out there then you have to go to IE9 and a Windows 7 upgrade or switch to Firefox,” he added, “That may be a significant opportunity for Firefox.”

Firefox 4 is available for free download and comes in versions for Windows, OS X and Linux.

Pichayada Promchertchoo

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