71% of users run latest version of their browser

By on November 8, 2010, 1:45 PM
Many new websites are relying on features that only modern browsers can offer. Web developers constantly have to battle with the many users that don't regularly upgrade their browsers (by choice, because they're ignorant, or because their IT departments won't let them). This hinders the progress of the Web as it slowly moves towards the latest and greatest features browser technologies, like HTML5. That being said, a surprisingly large number of users (71 percent) already run the latest official versions of their browser, according to the latest data from Pingdom and StatCounter.

Google is leading the pack for browser vendors, thanks to Chrome's built-in update feature. 90.6 percent of all Chrome users have the latest stable release (version 7). Furthermore, considering Chrome's fast release cycle, it's very likely that many of the users not on version 7.0 are actually using a later build (either version 8 or version 9). Following Chrome, the next three are Firefox (81 percent are on version 3.6), Opera (77 percent use version 10.6), and Safari (71 percent run version 5.0).

It's not very surprising that Internet Explorer is dead last. Many haven't upgraded to the latest version of Microsoft's browser, though it's still impressive to see that 60.2 percent of IE users are running version 8. IE8 is actually the most popular browser, even if you don't take version numbers into account for other browsers. Furthermore, many are eagerly giving Internet Explorer 9 a shot.

Now the question is, are you running the latest stable or beta version of your browser?

User Comments: 49

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Jibberish18 said:

Not running the latest beta of Firefox because the last time I tried, my add ons were not compatible. That and I wanted to run 2 different profiles on my work computer but it didn't do that. Merged as one. SO, I'll just wait until the official 4.x Firefox comes out.

TeamworkGuy2 said:

This is pretty cool information. I am not surprised at Google Chrome's numbers, as it has a built in updater that keeps the browser current. Firefox did pretty well too. And, IE's numbers are expected, due to people not using windows update and many large companies still using IE6 and IE7.

ElShotte ElShotte said:

Does Google Chrome auto-update? If yes, than yes. Actually, this is great information for myself, being a web developer, it's always been a struggle to make websites look and function good across a wide variety of browsers and their multiple versions, I believe it is time to focus on creating websites that are compatible with only the newest browsers, or at least the newest stable version of Internet Explorer, that's always been the worst one. Site works in IE7, but fails in IE6 or looks like garbage.

treeski treeski said:

This is really surprising to me. I think most of my friends regularly update their software, but I could still easily imagine the results much worse.

All of my stuff is either fully up-to-date or in a beta release.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Wonder how many businesses are lagging behind in updates? Especially IE as that's the most commonly used browser in a business environment.

I use Chrome and Firefox and have the latest versions. I normally don't mess with beta versions. I'll let someone else figure out what's wrong with those.

omega00 said:

I use both Chrome and Firefox; Chrome the majority of the time. Yes, I have the latest versions of each browser. Since I'm online everyday, I've developed a habit of checking for program updates usually at the start of every day. I'm not too surprised about the results from data, and I'm not surprised that IE came in dead last.

TwiztidSef said:

I don't update many of my browsers. Mainly because I have a relatively static set of sites I go to. I never had much of a issue with viruses and stuff. The only thing I really want to stay compatible with is Adobe Flash and Unity Web Player.

ElShotte ElShotte said:

@ TomSEA: Internet Explorer is automatically updated through Windows Update, so technically as long as they have IE 8 installed (again, probably through Windows Update) they're running the latest version given Windows Update is enabled.

tonylukac said:

Yep, business users stagnate. Ironically, they're mostly using ie, the most insecure browser. "Legacy" systems. What do businesses do with all their time. Collect tarp money?

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I'm running the latest Firefox 4 Beta 8 Pre nightly. And it's damn fast. Chrome feels a tiny bit slower.

I also run the latest Chromium trunk build (not Google Chrome, or at least not yet anyways), version 9.0.576.0 (65344).

taea00 said:

ElShotte said:

Does Google Chrome auto-update? If yes, than yes.

I use Chrome, but as far as I know it doesn't auto-update. It's built into the browser under the help though to check the latest version and update to it if you don't have it. I <3 Chrome! It's so fast and getting faster and the ability to pull tabs apart is wonderful!

Technochicken Technochicken, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Chrome updates its self, so I am pretty much always running an up to date browser. For the rare occasion I do use Firefox though it is most likely not up to date. I only do use it once in a blue moon, so it hopefully is not too much of an issue.

Relic Relic, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I run the latest version of FF on all my machines and don't really mess much with betas since I like my add ons. But I would've expected IE to be lower then 60% maybe like 50% or less, I guess all that bad press has gotten through to some of those still running older versions.

sMILEY4ever said:

I'm surprised it's only 71%. I would've expected 80%+

Guest said:

Upgrade. It's a security issue.

Se7enVII said:

I almost always run the latest version of any software myself and I always update computers I work on as well. It's great to hear people are becoming more aware that they should update though!

speeedy6 said:

Currently using Firefox beta 7 myself. I like to keep up with the new stuff especially when it doesn't cost me anything.

DryIce said:

I absolutely am running the latest version of my browser. I really found it surprising that that many people were running the latest releases. I know barely anyone (other than myself, of course) that updates their software regularly.

spyx said:

I think the compatibility issue is the main thing but i dont even use IE although IE 9 looks nice but it has a lot of bugs that i have found, for me chrome is the choice its fast not tooo complicated causing it to speed it and well frankly i like google stuff XD

vangrat said:

Beta IE9, Firefox Latest, and Opera Latest. On all machines mind you.

compu4 said:

I honestly don't know why anyone would avoid downloading the latest version of his or her favorite web browser. The latest version almost always has more features and fewer security holes.

mitomobo said:

sorry i cant update my colleague browser.else they wont be able to run oracle application from the browser. i blame it on our programmer for not updating the system.it just not compatible with firefox 3.0 and above..


I like to try browsers but I don't like the auto update... Both Chrome and Opera have released unstable versions through auto updates in the past and i've had to uninstall and downgrade. This was particularly difficult with Chrome as they seem to refuse to offer easy access to offline installers, they want to make everything web based install. I find this extremely annoying, being an advanced user and IT tech alike.

Needless to say i'm sure the auto update is a large part of browsers users' running the latest version.

I think I use Opera the most... as i'm quite partial to the undo function operating as a restore closed window for when you accidentally close a tab in Opera, just CTRL+Z brings it back. No other browsers do this with ease, you have to go back in some sort of history or recently closed tabs thing. Also I like being able to resize and move tab windows around within the browser, and I don't know any other browsers that do that.

Lokalaskurar Lokalaskurar said:

Currently running five different betas, only to see what the future has to offer. As with IE9, it will undoubtly be the new sheriff in town. There are tonnes of improvements to it,, compared to IE8 and 7. But the lack of html5-support really bugs me a lot... The only webbrowser capable of all (but 1) of the html5-scripts is Google Chrome.

Hopefully the IE9 will support html5 better in the official version, otherwise many might skip IE altogether.

dlen said:

As I know Chrome auto-updates itself so I don't know why people have older versions. In case of Firefox it happens that addons are not compatible with newest version so that may cause a little fear to upgrade.

bam13 said:

I┬'m using firefox, latest version...I mean what┬'s the point of not updating your browser? At least it should be security issue

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

IE9B, FF4B6 & O10.63.

Sauliaks said:

I'm using Chrome (7.0.517.44). Looks like this is the latest version. But Chrome is updating by itself, isn't it?

Recipe7 Recipe7 said:

Why is there an article on this? It's just a matter of auto-updates that these browsers put out. Hell, if it wasn't for the auto-updates, I would be on Firefox 2.0 still.

Guest said:

Who the hell you think you are calling me ignorant. YOU are obviously ignorant for making such a statement and you being a spokesperson for TechSpot. I hope your superiors chew your *** out for that. I run IE7 W/IE7 pro, because I like it and I want to. I get tired of having things shoved down my throat that I dont want.

uttaradhaka said:

Thats a great statistic!!

I run Google Chrome Beta and Canary channels, so I'm ahead of the latest Chrome stable. So thats good! But, if most people run the latest version of their browser, then the web will develop a lot faster.

cyriene said:

I still have to use IE6 at work. It hurts pretty bad.

Demons said:

This is not surprising to me as most browsers prompt you to update all the time. I bet the main reason IE is last is because of all of the corporate networks that the IT departments haven't moved to the latest versions because of all the problems that come with a large upgrade like that. Most of the other browsers are used by home users who update their own computer at their leisure.

Colonel Lance said:

I always make sure that I'm using the latest version of any program I use. I hate running in to bugs and even though I occasionally still do, it happens much less frequently when you're patching everything ASAP.

ruzveh said:

I use IE 6 and latest ver of Firefox and chrome browser. What are u thinking? Why i havnt upgrade IE and done rest of the browser? That is i like some things to be plain simple. No adons or anything. IE 6 is simple browser and faster than former ver

ChrisG683 said:

I really don't like how Chrome stealth auto-updates itself without even asking you. I guess in the grand scheme of things they have achieved what they wanted, but I much prefer being asked before updating my Firefox.

limpangel limpangel said:

@Lokalaskurar: I guess you didn't read the article about W3C, HTML5 tests and IE9 [http://www.techspot.com/news/40956-w3c-reveals-first-html5-
onformance-tests-ie9-surprises.html] on TechSpot.

Because of the 30% that do not update their browsers the malware coders are still in business (also the antivirus industry :P ). I say this because if you don't bother to update your browser (the most used piece of software these days) than you'd likely not bother updating your OS and other software you are using.

Anyway, a nice little piece of software for the paranoid in me is Secunia PSI [http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/personal]. Run it and you will see if you are really up to date with your software.

Guest said:

@Guest from november 9 at 8:01...why don't you rea5 the article again and actually pay attention this time:

Web developers constantly have to battle with the many users that don't regularly upgrade their browsers (by choice, because they're ignorant, or because their IT departments won't let them).

Notice anything? The author didn't call you ignorant. He gave 3 valid reason for why some people don't upgrade.

By Choice: pretty self explanatory

Ignorance: some people think that upgrading does absolutely nothing, when in fact it's better to do so. Updates don't just make your browser look prettier, they fix security flaws and make browsers more compatible with newer technology.

Anyway, like I said...the author didn't call you ignorant. If he did, he wouldn't have listed the two other reasons for why people don't upgrade. You either didn't pay attention, or are just looking for something to complain about :D

slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Most companies are still on IE 6 or 7... it's just that people don't surf the web as much at work.

Razerblade said:

I am quite surprised by this. I thought it would be a lot less for users using the latest version. I'm not so surprised about IE as Microsoft do not really offer updates very easily apart from through windows update which not everyone runs. There should be something within the browser to make it separate.

jazboy said:

for IE & chrome i expected this.

Eddo22 said:

I'm already using IE 9..somewhat. Seamonkey and Opera are my main browsers.

Puiu Puiu said:

I only use stable versions of browser, but i might give FF4 beta7 or 8 a try just because they aren't releasing it this year.

poertner_1274 poertner_1274, secroF laicepS topShceT, said:

The only browser I believe people don't update regularly is IE. Because most people who use IE don't know any better. I'd be willing to bet that more than 71% of FF, Opera, & Chrome users are up to date. Partially because the browser regularly asks them if they want to update.

ucould2 ucould2 said:

ruzveh said:

I use IE 6 and latest ver of Firefox and chrome browser. What are u thinking? Why i havnt upgrade IE and done rest of the browser? That is i like some things to be plain simple. No adons or anything. IE 6 is simple browser and faster than former ver

You do know there is a way to run IE8 with no add-ons

I use FF (v3.6.12, released 2010-10-27) most, but if the comments here are true then they (all my browsers) are already up-to-date.

Guest said:

the most companies works on XP, so, no IE9 even when it comes final

but for that FF3.6 and FF4B6 here

zogo said:

I always use latest versions of my software programs except Beta's. There are countless reasons why should everyone have the latest versions, starting from safety to estetics. Always keep in step with the new achievements

skitzo_zac skitzo_zac, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I always have the latest stable version of Opera installed and usually a second install of the latest alpha or beta version. Also running the IE 9 beta atm.

conradwar said:

Running the latest version of a browser means that your browser is the fastest in the world. Even I keep upgrading my Firefox from time to time.


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