New research by web analytics firm Net Applications suggests that the use of Windows computers to browse the internet is declining, albeit very slowly, against Mac and Linux systems, and the iPhone.
The report lists the top operating systems in use for browsing, derived from aggregating traffic across the network of web sites that use Net Applications' services, which the company puts at around 160 million users.
The data showed that in January 2008, 91.5 per cent of web traffic came from Windows users, 7.6 per cent from Mac users and 0.6 per cent from Linux users. A year on, the figures are 88.3 per cent from Windows users, 9.9 per cent from Mac users and 0.8 per cent from Linux users.
Surfers using Apple's iPhone, meanwhile, have increased from 0.1 per cent in January last year to nearly 0.5 per cent now.
There is some good news for Microsoft, however, as the Net Applications data shows a 0.2 per cent rise in Windows 7 use since the beta release.
"This is an indication of strong interest in Windows 7, since it does not come pre-installed on a computer like Vista," noted the report.
"Beta users are taking the time and effort to install it on their home computers, since corporations generally prohibit beta operating systems to be used in production environments."
However, Net Applications' data for browsers in use showed another decrease for Microsoft products. Internet Explorer had a 75.5 per cent share of traffic in January 2008, but this has now decreased to 67.6 per cent.
Meanwhile, the use of Firefox has increased from 17 per cent last January to 21.5 per cent now; use of Apple's Safari rose from 5.8 per cent to 8.3 per cent over the same period.
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