A recent report by StatCounter says that Firefox is now the leading browser in Europe. As always, market numbers are to be taken with a grain of salt, but it's hard to imagine a better way to start 2011, considering how small Mozilla is compared to its main competitors (Microsoft, Google and Apple). This is the result of the commitment of the Mozilla community and teams over the past decade. Very frankly, if someone told me that a non-profit organization would beat Microsoft at its own game just 5 or 6 years ago, I would have told him to quit smoking funny cigarettes ;-).
It's time to rejoice and have a drink, (after all, the Paris office is in France, so we're always ready to party and have a drink!), but let's not forget a couple of things...
- We're now in a market that is more competitive than ever, where 3 players are likely to dominate the others (Firefox being one of them):
- Chrome is gaining market share and shipping new versions very quickly, along with a very aggressive marketing campaign
- Microsoft is back at work and IE9 is a very serious competitor, especially as it's bundled with Windows (as always).
- Mobile is the new frontier, and Mozilla has a card to play here, especially on Android.
In order to succeed on the desktop and the mobile spaces, there is a very simple thing to do: ship a killer version of Firefox 4 soon!
So let's enjoy the fact that we're succeeding more in Europe than we hoped for initially, but let's quickly return back to work and invest all of our energy in making an amazing Firefox 4 both on the desktop and on mobile. This is key for our future!
- The best analysis in my opinion is provided by Glyn Moody on Computerworld UK: 2011: The Year of Firefox - or of Chrome? ;
- The StatCounter press release: Firefox overtakes Internet Explorer in Europe in browser wars ;
- The StatCounter data;
- New York Times: Firefox Leads in Europe ;
- Bloomberg: Microsoft Browser Dethroned in Europe by Mozilla Firefox, StatCounter Says ;
- Reuters: Firefox takes top browser spot in Europe: StatCounter ;
- ITpro.co.uk:New statistics show Firefox has beat Internet Explorer to the European top spot in December..
 And I'm not even mentioning the fact that there are various sources of market share data, and not all of them give the same results.