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Browser Numbers on the Rise

by Derrick Story
Mac Newsletter for 07/05/2002

Dear Mac Reader,

I just read a report that Apple's worldwide market share had increased ever so slightly during the past year -- something like a quarter of a percent. (I'll be interested to see what the same report says this time next year.) Reading this report started me thinking about the O'Reilly audience and what they're using these days.

So I reviewed recent browser/platform reports from four areas of O'Reilly Network: Mac DevCenter, Linux DevCenter, Web Development, and O'Reilly Network as a whole. Most of what I found was predictable. But there were a few surprises.

For O'Reilly Network as a whole, Mac browsers weighed in at #7 and #9 in the top ten list determined by page hits. Of the top ten entries, Mac had 12.5 percent of the pages, and Windows browsers had the other 87.5 percent. No Linux browsers made the top ten for the Network as a whole.

Mac's 12.5 percent share is more than double the percentage I recorded a year ago for O'Reilly Network. Seems to me is that the open source community is moving to Mac OS X faster than the rest of the world.

Now, taking a look at the Mac DevCenter, Mac browsers dominated the top 6 positions, with OmniWeb 4.1 making a nice showing in third place. Mac browsers accounted for 85 percent of the page hits on the Mac DevCenter (of the top ten browsers).

In other specific topic areas, Macs didn't fare as well. For example, in Web Development the top 6 browser/platform combinations were IE/Windows -- a bit of a surprise for me thinking that Macs rank higher there.

In the Linux DevCenter, I didn't see a Mac browser until position #29! Wow. What's even stranger, there wasn't a Linux browser until #11. The top ten positions on the Linux DevCenter were dominated by IE/Windows. Do you believe it?

So, what am I saying here?

To subscribe to the Mac newsletter (or any O'Reilly Network newsletters), visit http://www.oreillynet.com/cs/user/home and select the newsletters you wish to receive in your user profile (you'll need to log in with your existing O'Reilly Network account -- if you don't yet have an account, you'll need to create one).

First, clearly there aren't many Windows users hanging out in the Mac DevCenter -- that's the terrain of Mac OS X using either IE or OmniWeb. Second, there seems to be a substantial increase of Mac visitors for the O'Reilly Network as a whole -- Macs definitely seem to be on the rise in the open source community. And finally, Linux just isn't happening on the desktop. If it were, we would see more Linux browsers tapping into our Linux DevCenter.

Where does this all lead us? Well, if the open source community label as "early adopters" has any merit at all, we should see a rise in Apple's market share over the coming months. As a reader of our Mac DevCenter, you might be on the ground floor of something really big.

Until next time,

Derrick Story
O'Reilly Network Managing Editor
derrick@oreilly.com

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