Eventually, Microsoft's renewed efforts to curb Internet Explorer's decline in popularity ought pay off. In fact, they may already be. IE marketing chief Ryan Gavin blogged yesterday that the web browser saw global usage share growth in June, according to figures from Net Applications. That's good news for a browser whose usage share has been sinking steadily for several years now.
Net Applications says IE's piece of the pie grew slightly from 59.8% in May to 60.3% in June. Over the same time period, both Firefox and Opera dropped, while Google Chrome and Safari enjoyed continued growth. Chrome has been doing particularly well, growing by 2.5 points over the past six months alone, although it's still a relatively minor player with just a 7.2% total share.
We're left wondering exactly why more users didn't abandon IE last month, and Gavin offers no clue. The browser did see a short spurt of growth right around the same time last year—its share climbed from 67.8% in April to 68.1% in May and 68.3% in June—but that was right after Internet Explorer 8's mid-March release, and IE resumed its slow death spiral shortly thereafter. Who knows? Maybe this time, everyone's switching over to the IE9 Platform Preview.