Safari now has over 1 billion users, the second web browser to pass this milestone

Tudor Cibean

Posts: 119   +8
Staff
Bottom line: A new report claims that Apple's Safari web browser currently has over 1 billion users on both mobile and desktop. Meanwhile, Chrome is reportedly used by over 3.3 billion users, meaning that over 40% of the world population prefers Google's web browser.

According to a new study by Atlas VPN, Apple's Safari web browser just passed the 1 billion user mark, making it the second browser ever to achieve this feat.

The Atlas VPN team reached these statistics by taking the total number of internet users, which is currently estimated to be over 5.2 billion, and dividing it based on GlobalStats' browser market share percentages. It's also worth noting that these numbers include both desktop and mobile users.

Safari comes as the default browser on most of Apple's devices, including iPhones, iPads, and Macs. Nonetheless, today's achievement remains impressive considering that the browser isn't available on Android or Windows (Apple stopped developing the Windows version a decade ago), the two most popular operating systems.

 

Meanwhile, Google Chrome has a whopping 3.3 billion users worldwide, remaining by far the most popular web browser, a title it inherited in 2012 from Internet Explorer.

Microsoft Edge takes third place with over 212 million users. The browser has slowly been gaining ground since becoming Chromium-based in 2019. Rounding out the list is Firefox with 179 million, Samsung Internet with 149 million, and Opera with 108 million users.

In related news, the EU might have something to say about Apple requiring third-party web browsers on iOS to use the WebKit engine, the same as Safari.

Permalink to story.

 

Dimitriid

Posts: 2,216   +4,268
This is a measure of Apple´s market penetration. I thought the M1 would make them erode the laptop and pc market a bit more but I think they just wanted enough presence in those segments to make sure their main money maker, the iphone, remains popular and well supported. I believe that's their overall strategy and why we probably won't see Apple Silicon overtake the PC industry as they're what I've been predicting: no longer the main consumer device, but an accessory for devs and tech enthusiasts where most people's main device is a phone and/or a tablet.
 

Goamist

Posts: 52   +90
Safari is for Apple's OS what Edge is for Windows. The fact that there are so many Safari users only tells me that the MacOS or iOS users are too ignorant or too lazy to switch to another, better browser.
 

defaultluser

Posts: 435   +348
Safari is for Apple's OS what Edge is for Windows. The fact that there are so many Safari users only tells me that the MacOS or iOS users are too ignorant or too lazy to switch to another, better browser.

1. When you take into account the fact that most Safari users are running on iOS,

and 2: THERE IS NO OTHER BROWSER OPTION on iOS!

https://www.computerworld.com/artic...gainst-apple-ban-on-third-party-browsers.html

You realize that Apple is stacking the decks!


I'm happily running Firefox on Android.
 
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NeoMorpheus

Posts: 1,150   +2,316
1. When you take into account the fact that most Safari users are running on iOS,

and 2: THERE IS NO OTHER BROWSER OPTION on iOS!

https://www.computerworld.com/artic...gainst-apple-ban-on-third-party-browsers.html

You realize that Apple is stacking the decks!

Exactly.

Apple doesnt allow other browser engines on iOS.

I am honestly surprised that now is when someone (EU) is talking about doing something about it.

Man, I hate how FirefoxOS died and went nowhere.

Well, it turned into KaiOS, but its not on any high end device.
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 533   +681
This is a measure of Apple´s market penetration. I thought the M1 would make them erode the laptop and pc market a bit more but I think they just wanted enough presence in those segments to make sure their main money maker, the iphone, remains popular and well supported. I believe that's their overall strategy and why we probably won't see Apple Silicon overtake the PC industry as they're what I've been predicting: no longer the main consumer device, but an accessory for devs and tech enthusiasts where most people's main device is a phone and/or a tablet.


Honestly nearly every MacOS user I know, me included, uses a different browser on MacOS. I have a M1 Macbook and I personally use Chrome, but I also have Firefox installed. Safari is the last browser I would use on MacOS TBH.

Apple's iOS is different. They force you to use Safari's back end, sure you can install other browsers. But those are only front ends, and even then it is heavily forced to still use a lot of apple design metrics. So every iOS device is Safari regardless if they want to be or not. In that regard, these Safari numbers are not that impressive.
 

MSIGamer

Posts: 73   +88
Isn't this just a measure of how many iphones and ipads there are in the world, while the rest of the users are using mostly chrome? :p
 

GregonMaui

Posts: 330   +120
Honestly nearly every MacOS user I know, me included, uses a different browser on MacOS. I have a M1 Macbook and I personally use Chrome, but I also have Firefox installed. Safari is the last browser I would use on MacOS TBH.

Apple's iOS is different. They force you to use Safari's back end, sure you can install other browsers. But those are only front ends, and even then it is heavily forced to still use a lot of apple design metrics. So every iOS device is Safari regardless if they want to be or not. In that regard, these Safari numbers are not that impressive.
really? don't Macs only have about 8% of an installed base, even if the new Apple Silicon jumped them to 14% market share for one quarter. sounds impressive. And even if iOS uses a certain back end, there are numerous browsers available all with their own feature sets. What you are concerned that the UI looks a bit like iOS. don't you hate it when you use windows and the UI doesn't look anything like a Windows program? Each application should have a look and feel for the OS it is installed on, period. The only drawback to that is that someone using an application across multiple locations would have to know where things are located on each, but that is stilll way better than using different applications on the same platform and each of them use a different UI design altogether - that is confusing
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 533   +681
really? don't Macs only have about 8% of an installed base, even if the new Apple Silicon jumped them to 14% market share for one quarter. sounds impressive. And even if iOS uses a certain back end, there are numerous browsers available all with their own feature sets. What you are concerned that the UI looks a bit like iOS. don't you hate it when you use windows and the UI doesn't look anything like a Windows program? Each application should have a look and feel for the OS it is installed on, period. The only drawback to that is that someone using an application across multiple locations would have to know where things are located on each, but that is stilll way better than using different applications on the same platform and each of them use a different UI design altogether - that is confusing
MacOS makes up such a small %, under 10% and even that is an inflated number. But Safari is not a hugely popular web browser on MacOS, and that is pretty much fact. Safari on MacOS is much like Edge on Windows, some people use it. But most use something else.

MacOS is heavily used by web devs, and Chrome/Firefox are by far the browsers of choice for web devs. Both have features and tools that make it helpful.

iPhones are the exact opposite. Doesn't matter what browser you use, the back end is still safari. So most identification programs identify any iPhone browser as Safari, even if they use something else. Granted Safari is pretty common on iOS regardless, and normally you only see people using Chrome if they want access to their synced data.


So Safari's number is largely from iPhone Sales, and current iPhone user base. Apple accounts for less than 1/3rd of PC & Phone web browser presence. Yet sits at a 2.4T Market Cap.

It has been known for a long time that apple is overly dependent on their iPhone Lineup. Big reason why they have kept iOS closed down. Apple keeps their own service front and center, while doing as much as they can to push competition away "legally". This is why we can't sideload. This is why the market place has very strict rules. This is why Web Browsers are still forced to use apple backends, etc.

For a company with the revenue that apple has, they do very little in terms of world infrastructure growth. They don't do Datacenters, they don't do global communication. They make iPhones with high margin percentage.

Luckily for them, they have a fan base. As well as a user base that is already invested. America is by far their biggest market, with nearly half the user base being iPhone users. Which is by far one of the best usage ratios compared to android for apple globally. Luckily they know good marketing. Highlight things like privacy, makes for good marketing.
 

bexwhitt

Posts: 595   +307
I wonder if my macbook is classed as an active Safari user, even though I always use firefox.
 

p51d007

Posts: 3,213   +2,746
Kind of misleading too. Apple comes with Safari pre-loaded similar to how windows comes with edge pre-loaded.
Just like saying Apple has the most smartphone sales every year. Because Apple only sells Apple.
combine just a couple of the Android phones and they outpace Apple.
 

GregonMaui

Posts: 330   +120
The backends of those web browsers run on apple's webkit.
yah, so? just did an App Store search for browsers on iOS,here are just a few:

Firefox,
duckduckGo,
Brave,
Aloha,
Opera
Microsoft Edge
Puffin
google chrome
FireFox Focus

the facts are in, lots of browsers. BTW, most apps are made using Xcode, they use apple software for windowing, communications, UI, .......... Boom!
 

8600M GT

Posts: 44   +27
What I'd be curious to see is how this compares to IE's peak number of users. Percentage-wise, of course, IE ruled the roost, but the Internet was smaller back then. Still, IE circa 2005 must have had hundreds of millions of users.

Still, I see that this report is based on StatCounter numbers, and "GlobalStats" is just rebranded StatCounter. So I'm taking it with a large grain of salt.

The "is everything on iOS identified as Safari?" question is interesting. Even on StatCounter, I see that they report Firefox at about 0.5% on mobile, and checking my user agent on iOS via DuckDuckGo (I use Firefox pretty much exclusively on iOS), "Mozilla" is very prominent in it. But I know Vivaldi, for example, mimics Chrome in its user agent, so unless you're looking at one of the few sites that Vivaldi whitelists to show its real user agent, their market share just shows up as "Chrome". I don't know if this is practiced among any (or how many) of the iOS Safari alternatives.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 2,418   +2,940
TechSpot Elite
I'm sticking with Firefox. I like the fact that it's open-source and independent. I also like that it's the direct descendant of the original browser, Mosaic, by way of Netscape.

Firefox invented tabbed browsing and they're beholden to no corporate fat-cats. It has always worked just fine and is the only Windows browser that ISN'T based on Google Chomium. I even use it on my phone.
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 533   +681
yah, so? just did an App Store search for browsers on iOS,here are just a few:

Firefox,
duckduckGo,
Brave,
Aloha,
Opera
Microsoft Edge
Puffin
google chrome
FireFox Focus

the facts are in, lots of browsers. BTW, most apps are made using Xcode, they use apple software for windowing, communications, UI, .......... Boom!
Do you know what a front end and a backend are?

If you are still forced to use the safari engine, but slap a new front end on it. Does that make it any different?...

Sure, in small regards. Yeah if you use Chrome on iOS you can access your saved passwords and bookmarks. And move from device to device easier. But you are not using the chrome engine.

Using Firefox does not mean the page is being rendered using the same engine firefox on android or windows uses.

That is the difference.

Its like if Microsoft forced everyone who wanted to make a web browser to use the internet explorer engine, but they can doctor up the interface with looks and features. But call it something new.

Web Browsers on iOS suck. Lackin in features
 

defaultluser

Posts: 435   +348
did you make that up? there are numerous browser choices on iOS.


Are you simply incapable of reading the link I provided? It amazes me how lazy the apple Tolls have become!

Developers push back against Apple ‘ban’ on third-party browser

Open Web Advocacy, a UK-based group of developers, argues that by forcing browser makers to use WebKit on its mobile platform, Apple is engaged in anti-competitive practices.
 
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Mr Majestyk

Posts: 1,264   +1,149
Both Chrome and Safari suck, totally travesty to see Chrome usage so high. iTards have very little choice as all third party browsers have to use Webkit so are mostly rubbish too.

Firefox all the way, then Brave if it has to be a Chromium based browser.
 

GoldenGoat

Posts: 62   +61
I am probably counted under multiple browsers in their data, because I use Chrome on my work device (I don't get to choose this one), Safari on my phone, and Firefox on my personal PC. I have no issues with Safari. It is good. I'd probably use Firefox on my phone if the true Firefox were available on phone though.