The growth rate of new users "putting Firefox into action" has dropped. According to a recent study, Firefox has seen its U.S. growth rate for actual usage fall by nearly half since its debut. The statistics, which led to the report by WebSideStory, a Web analytics company, are based on the number of users who have not only downloaded the browser but who have installed it and are using it to view Web sites that WebSideStory tracks.

"In December, it seemed Firefox was a lock to reach 10 percent (market share) by mid-2005, ahead of the reported year-end goal of the Mozilla Foundation," Lunsford said. "Given the latest growth rates, the year-end target still appears attainable, but a midyear achievement is unlikely."