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Safari 'update' ploy triples Windows usage

updated 12:10 pm EDT, Fri May 2, 2008

PC Safari use triples

Apple's Safari browser recently tripled its number of Windows users in the span of a month, according to the Internet analytics group Net Applications. Although the earlier Safari 3.0 beta never achieved Windows marketshare over 0.07 percent, even with the help of a recognizable brand and several months of availability, this figure grew to 0.21 percent during the months of March and April, following the release of the official Safari 3.1 client.

The data may be extremely controversial however, as it coincides with the browser's forced deployment through Software Update. Safari 3.1 was automatically presented to Windows users as if it were another upgrade, when in reality many downloaders had previously never had any version of the software installed. Fortune notes that many critics believe this was a deliberate tactic to inrease marketshare, particularly as Apple only resolved the problem in late April. Software Update now lists Safari as an optional new piece of software.

by MacNN Staff





  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Windoze users I know...

    ...generally don't know what they don't know...

    Those who don't read the fine print before installing software risk many things including viruses... It is a wild west...

  1. tindrum

    Joined: Dec 1969


    cheap trick

    Yes, people are dumb, and don't read the fine print or even the bold print. It was still a cheap shot by Apple to automatically install something unrelated to the original software. Not sure what the market-share numbers mean. On the next iTunes update, they should surreptitiously install OS X for generic PC :) Just kidding.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: windoze users I know

    So, are you saying Mac users are waaaay too smart to fall for such a ploy?

    And what fine print are you talking about? Most software doesn't have fine print that says "BTW, by clicking OK, you agree to be infected with a virus".

    tindrum, technically Apple didn't automatically install software on windows computers. They told you of software you never installed, and offered to update it for you. Being from a major company like Apple, people probably figured that they had installed it and took the update.

  1. rtbarry

    Joined: Dec 1969


    forced upgrades?

    like vista? since MS is dropping support for XP, the unwilling and the unsuspecting won't have a choice.

    shame on apple for taking a page from MSs playbook.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: forced upgrades

    Vista isn't a forced upgrade. You can use XP on your PCs for as long as you like. In fact, if you have copies of XP, you can probably install them on new computers as well, even if MS doesn't sell it anymore. Just because MS doesn't sell the old version of the OS doesn't mean it stops working.

    However, good luck getting a copy of Tiger to run on a new Mac, though.

  1. JeffHarris

    Joined: Dec 1969


    not forced to use it

    The Safari 3.1 install may have been by stealth, or rely on user stupidity, but that certainly didn't force anyone to actually USE Safari.

    Clearly, once some people heard that Safari was or may have been installed, took it for a test drive. Some liked it, some not.

    For the whiners, Apple heard the complaints and changed their policy. Safari is clearly identified as new software if it's not already installed. That's NOT an MS ploy by any means.

    At this point it's pretty much a dead issue, except for a blip in Safari usage.

  1. msuper69

    Joined: Dec 1969


    .21 per cent...

    that would be .0021 of all Windows users.

    Do ya think Macnn meant 21 per cent? 'cause .21 per cent would be rather insignificant.

  1. dliup

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Safari = high score

    Perhaps it's more due to the fact that Safari 3.1 scored high on compliance with web standards?

  1. RiquiScott

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Gotta love statistics..

    Am I the only one bothered by writers using phrases like "tripling" when talking about increases over a miniscule base figure?

    I know it's techically correct, but saying something like "I tripled the number of CDs I bought this year compared to last year" really sounds like a big increase, until you find out I only bought one CD last year.

  1. rytc

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Well technically XP will stop working when MS stops supporting it. No more security updates means as soon as another hole is found in XP they will be open to all to exploit forever - the holes will never be patched as MS no longer supports it.

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