Friends Don’t Let Friends Use Internet Explorer 6

Friends Don’t Let Friends Use Internet Explorer 6

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Jason Yang
Mar 29, 2011

Unbelievably, that's actually a slogan from Microsoft itself! It's a sure sign to move on when even the manufacturer wants their old product to simply go away. Microsoft recently launched "The Internet Explorer 6 Countdown" as a promotional tool to educate and shame the world into upgrading. The site reports that as of today, 12% of the world was still using IE6, down 9% from last year. While the U.S. is sitting pretty at merely 2.9%, China and Korea are the worst offenders, showing 34.5% and 24.8% still using IE6.

w3schools.com reports similar findings, showing 3.5% still using IE6. It's interesting to see their breakdown of usage by browser, which shows Firefox in the lead at 42.4%, Internet Explorer a distant second at 26.5%, Chrome a close-third at 24.1%, and Safari at 4.1%. Those of us old enough to remember the AOL and Netscape days may recall those dominant browsers and how Microsoft all but pushed Netscape off the cliff. It's nice to see IE getting some of its own medicine with the rise of such competent competitors.

While many IE6 users in corporate or government environments are stuck in difficult upgrade paths, it's interesting to imagine some correlation between upgrade paths and user audience.

Unplggd recently illustrated a nice speed comparison between the different browsers. But it's also not about just speed. Firefox offers tons of great extensions for users to customize their web browsing experience. With so many options out there, web developers (such as myself) are forced to code for compatibility towards all browsers. What that means for the user is that it doesn't really matter which web browser you use because ultimately they will all display websites the same. Then it becomes all about personal preference.

(Images: Flickr members JS Conf licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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