Browser

Poll Results: Given a fresh choice, which Web browser would you choose?

How did your peers answer this question: Given a fresh choice, which Web browser would you choose? I bet you think you know the answer.

On March 12, 2010, I asked a very simple and straightforward poll question: Given a fresh choice, which Web browser would you choose? Now, we all probably assumed which Web browser would be the clear winner, but I for one was a bit surprised by how the percentages came out. Apparently, the IT professional membership of TechRepublic have been exploring alternative Web browsers and are not nearly unanimous in their choices.

At home I have been using Internet Explorer 8 because I think it uses less resources and moves quicker than Firefox. At the office, it is almost entirely Firefox since it is most compatible with our Web publishing tools. But the poll results and the comments found in the discussion thread have gotten me interested in Chrome and Opera. There are so many good Web browser choices these days. Have you been exploring new browsers lately?

Poll results

About

Mark Kaelin is a CBS Interactive Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He is the host for the Microsoft Windows and Office blog, the Google in the Enterprise blog, the Five Apps blog and the Big Data Analytics blog.

28 comments
Alienwilly
Alienwilly

Reason, at almost every download there is a sneaky little checkbox that is almost always checked to download something that most people don't ask for, example: Browsers. My clients are always saying how the hell do I get these things I'm not asking for? There fore a large percentage of these browsers are unwanted and the polls are biased depending on how the questions were asked. Computer Repair Tech for 20 years.

eckerlin
eckerlin

For me, a non-sophisticated PC user, "simplicity" is important. This includes simplicity of installation, simplictiy of problem-determination, simplicity of support,... Since probably all major Web-Browsers provide more than sufficient functionality for me, I am not even considering the use of a non Microsoft Webrowser.... because of the ***potential*** additional complexity related to problem-determination for browsers from non-Microsoft development organizations. Also, because I am already using IE for many years and because I sam familiar with its use (for non-sophisticated purposes), I do not see why I should spend time to get familiar with another Browser.

andrew.glenda
andrew.glenda

I was surprised that Chrome scored as highly as it did. I've gone back to Opera as my backup browser as chrome is not compatible with several sites I use regularly Firefox is my default though PS Have you tried Opera Mini 5 on your phone? wow! talk about fast.

roman70816
roman70816

I personally prefer Mozilla Firefox. It allows you to do so much more then chrome, microsoft I.E. and Safari and most other browsers, not to mention the fact that it is more stable then most other browsers,yet; it surely does have it's issues also. Sometimes it "loads up" and runs very slowly and at other times it just "freezes" altogether. So I for one am quite aware of Firefoxe's issues at times. But Firefox has the capability that most other browsers do not have and that is functionality and expandability with "add-ons" and "themes" you can customize Mozilla Firefox to the way you like it and also add some very very cool add-ons as well. Yes the other browsers may have their "lagniape" but when compared to Mozilla, I think the other browsers are found wanting. As for me, Im sticking with Mozilla Firefox until or unless someone comes out with another third party browser that would just blow Firefox away.

Devonmcnulty
Devonmcnulty

I use Opera most of the time it is fast and easiest to customize for me. The one thing I don't like is that it seems to slow down faster than Chrome or Firefox after browsing the internet for a while. I don 't mind IE either, but for me its often counter intuitive and feels like more work than the other three. Anyway I use all four and keep trying alternate browsers such as Avant as well.

Slayer_
Slayer_

I was kind of hoping that Opera and "Other" would be bigger. Although I am glad that IE is finally dying, I don't like the prospect of FireFox having a monopoly.

oldbaritone
oldbaritone

Interesting but not surprising that IE's share is so low.

ibivi
ibivi

I started with IE but it kept shutting down a lot and it is slow. Firefox is good, pretty fast and I don't need as many add-ons. Safari is super fast but doesn't have enough features to suit my needs. Same thing with Chrome. I've tried Opera, K-Melon, Snow Leopard, and a few others but I've gone back to Firefox. My main complaint about it is not being to lock the font size. I found an add-on that corrects that though. So I'm staying with it. But I do watch browser news to see if that perfect browser is out there.

bjswm
bjswm

While I am disappointed at how far Seamonkey development trails behind Firefox (and Thunderbird), I still like the all-in-one product and use it as my main browser.

Ianpc04
Ianpc04

it runs like fire fox but can display as a different web browser depending on your personal needs. also it has plenty of security features. check it out.

jimiznhb
jimiznhb

CHROME for ANY Flash Based web site (I HATE adobe!!!) Firefox for Email 7 web browsing (Best Security :) IE ONLY when I have to :(

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

more resources than IE on a Windows system - this has only come about since the Microsoft .NET attack on Fire Fox and is, I think, related to the way Fire Fox has to work with Windows if not us9ing the .NET extension that leave it vulnerable. My son uses XP Pro and Fire Fox, but, since the upgrades and updates following the .NET attacks, he's noticed that FF uses a lot more memory. The interesting part is the jump started with the first FF non .NET upgrade, but really jumped again with the last few Windows updates. He's now seriously considering switching from FF - which is what, I think, Microsoft were after with their .NET attacks at FF - BUT, he's looking towards Opera, and not IE.

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

Were you expecting the results of this poll to be so fractured? Have you been exploring new browsers lately?

jfuller05
jfuller05

you know,what all the "real" geeks were using, but now, just as I thought, it's the dominant browser. I've heard average computer users say that they're different from everyone else because they use Firefox, which isn't exactly true. The general public use Firefox and just because a person uses it doesn't make them stand out in any fashion. :) edit: Just to make it clear, I'm not insulting Firefox at all, far from it.

jwildhair
jwildhair

SRWare.net's Iron browser works for me when I need an alternative to FireFox. The only time I HAVE to use IE is if my AT&T connection needs to be reset. I sometimes had trouble just finding IE in my programs ('til I got Win7).

jfuller05
jfuller05

I use Opera for home use and IE8 at work. Some people use Firefox at work too, but it's IE8 is the dominant browser where I work.

ian
ian

I used Firefox for a year or so but got very irritated with its poor use of memory on my (admittedly somewhat under-specified) desktop machine. I have changed to Opera (10.51) and find it much much faster as well as being far better at memory management. The only drawback has been the relative lack of add-ons. Opera's Turbo feature is also very useful on those occasions when I need to use a slow connection.

chriscampbellchr
chriscampbellchr

If and when Chrome is as mature as FF in terms of plug ins, I'll use that. FF for now.

Bucky Kaufman (MCSD)
Bucky Kaufman (MCSD)

I use IE because it's easier and safer when you're on Windows. Anything else would be like putting a Ford motor in a chevy Truck. It may have a certain artistic appeal, but there's just no practical reason for it.

dogknees
dogknees

I wouldn't call this a fractured market. How many manufacturers are in the automobile market? We've become used to near monopolies in the IT world, it's about time things changed to a normal market with real choices.

jfuller05
jfuller05

I too am an advocate of Opera.

aandruli
aandruli

Tried Opera just for the helluvit and -- Good Lord -- totally blows away FF and Chrome for speed. Also the way they have SpeedDial and favorites set up makes a lot more sense and is much more intuitive

jfuller05
jfuller05

Could you elaborate on your position?

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

UAC and Protected Mode? Add ons? Call backs? There certainly were many reasons for not using IE, and I haven't short of a big ad campaign heard naff all to convince me otherwise.

tosim
tosim

Been using Opera for over 12 years now. Have checked out others as I have a computer repair business, however, IMHO,Opera is by far, THE BEST!

awgiedawgie
awgiedawgie

Your experience speaks highly of you, but your comment struck me as being only one side of the coin (or is it a cube), so forgive me for playing devil's advocate. There are many reasons not to use each of the available browsers. But at the same time, there are many reasons TO use each of them. To state the painfully obvious: the browser you choose, both at home and the office, depends on your needs. I was surprised by the size of Firefox's piece of the pie, having had nothing but irritation in my own experience. Personally, I hate it. But at the same time, I was not surprised to see that Firefox came out on top, because they have had the most media exposure lately, as far as I can tell. I use IE8 because it serves me well. My brother uses Firefox. My son prefers Chrome. My daughter couldn't care less about computers in general. Not quite sure where I went wrong with her. -- UAC and Protected Mode? I know a lot of people who hate the new security features Windows introduced with Vista. No problem - turn them off. They're not required. -- Add-ons? That was my biggest complaint about Firefox. Most of my add-ons did not bevahe as advertised. And each one slowed my system down a little more. -- Call backs? I assume you refer to your getting called back by a customer. Every time I have ever called a tech or specialist back, it was because they either A) left before they finished the job, or B) didn't know their ascii from a hole in the ground. Quite often it was a blend of the two. But then if I had to call them in the first place, it had to be something pretty big for me to not be able to take care of it myself. Almost every time I have ever been called back, it was because the user had done something horrible and didn't know how to remedy the situation. But again, obviously if there is a recurring trend of call backs, it's time to rethink the stragedy. Unlike ten or fifteen years ago, today there are a lot of options (hence the article). So if you're like me, and Firefox is giving you headaches, put out the fire, shoot the fox, and take some aspirin. If IE isn't your cup of tea, don't drink it. If the Chrome just isn't shining, get tickets for the Opera. If a bunch of guys singing in Italian makes you want to hold your head, go on a Safari. And if you're like my brother, and have grown to despise everything about a PC, get a Mac.