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This 102 message thread spans 4 pages: < < 102 ( 1 2 [3] 4 > >     
Why Is Firefox Stilll Way Behind IE?
Is FF more popular among a certain demographic?
walrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 12:21 pm on Aug 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

Is FF more popular among a certain demographic or is it just gaining popularity slowly?

When i was checking analytics i noticed under browsers that FF was still only 15 % compared to IE at 80 %. I expected FF to be a lot more popular by now, just wondering what others are experiencing.

 

jessejump

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 12:52 am on Sep 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

>>>>> As a programmer, I can't compile invalid code,

I think the idea behind the web was to make it easy for just about anybody to create pages, not requiring a programmer's level of skill.
The web is comprised of about 8 billion pages now; if all pages had to be standards - compliant, there would be about 1 billion pages on the web.
Any company that created a browser that refused to render non-standard pages would go out of business in about 10 minutes.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 2:46 am on Sep 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yes, now any browser that refused to render compliant code would...like I said, it's an impossibility now. But what's the point in "standards" if you don't have to follow them?

Don't get me wrong, I've done things that weren't standard, still do on occasion. Not because I can't do it properly, but because I have the option to be lazy, rather than spend the time fighting with something that isn't working right and fixing it properly.

And for that matter...6 billion less pages online wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing!

And you don't have to be "tech savy or a genius" to figure out what "<div> tag is missing closing </div> tag". means, or whatever the error happens to be.

But the garbage I see, that gets rendered properly...wow, sometimes it blows my mind.

jordanmcclements

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 8:14 am on Sep 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

For my (free photos) web site. IE and Firefox are very nearly neck and neck (IE=49%, FF=45%).

[edited by: encyclo at 10:12 am (utc) on Sep. 11, 2007]
[edit reason] no links to personal sites please [/edit]

nickreynolds

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 8:42 am on Sep 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

The average user is probably pretty happy with IE and wouldn't see the need for Firefox. If they're familiar with and happy with it why change?

palgrave

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 11:04 pm on Sep 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

Old_Honky says:

IE6 41%
IE7 30%
FX 1.x 18%
Safari 5%
FX 2.x 2%
Opera 1%

This is for a non-techie site (selling steam cleaners)

optimierung says:

For a techie site the situation is totally different:

IE: 44% (IE6: 27%, IE7: 16%)
FF: 33% (2.0.0.4: 25%)

UserFriendly says:

My site is also pretty tech-based:

IE: 49.17% of unique visits;
FF: 39.72%;
Op: 4.45%;
Sf: 3.04%.

For what it's worth, stats for a corporate events equipment site I did are:

IE6 50%
FF2 22%
IE7 15%
FF1.x 11%

Opera is zero and Safari was just the agencies I have sent my portfolio to.

The message? If you are designing sites for clients who want to make money, make sure they work in IE and FF. If your site is for techie folk, and you are of the same opinion as swa66:

Perhaps us webmasters need to band together and start a more aggressive promotion of Firefox.

then design just for FF - that's your prerogative.

As for me, there's no way I'm going to tell a client that the people who view his website (including him) view it the wrong way, and the problems they are reporting to him are because they are not enlightened enough.

I am a web designer, not an evangelist. I don't care how people look at the sites I design. I care that they can see/hear them properly, and that is where standards come in. If you code according to standards, cross-browser compatibility issues become less of a headache and the job of the web designer is a lot easier.

sydney web designer

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:57 am on Sep 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

People use what they know. When a users needs exceed what IE is capable of, or they realise that Microsoft isn't the technological marvel they once believed, they start using software like Firefox. Personally I love Safari (which is now available for Windows) with the only real advantage of Firefox being that it has alot of useful extensions.

palgrave

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 12:23 pm on Sep 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

Is Safari for windows much the same as for Mac, or will it be like IE5 for Mac - the same but different!?

palgrave

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 12:38 pm on Sep 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

sorry guys, that was the laziest question i have ever seen on any forum. i'm off to find out for myself!

Xapti

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:05 am on Sep 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

Some people wonder why users haven't upgraded to FF 2.0.

Well there's a few reasons, some which apply to me:
Nubmer one: Firefox 2.0 wasn't an automatic update, and it never asked if you wanted to update. A regular user would have to stumble on FF's website to know that there's a new version. Only now that 1.5 is no longer supported (or possibly a bit before, since I think it was a bit preparatory) are users getting informational messages that they should upgrade their browser.
Number two: 2.0 offers nothing really new. I upgraded to 1.5 quickly, Because as far as I remember, it was one of the awesome-est versions of FF. It added more support for many new web technologies, such as SVG and CSS.
Number three: 2.0 changes some things visually. I like the current look, and I'd have to waste a bit of my time to revert back to the old appearances and layouts.
Number four: 'if it ain't broke don't fix it' -not something I follow much myself, but I do to an extent, especially on old/'fragile' systems. "My current browser version works fine, why should I risk trying a newer version that may cause a conflict with my system, or some other problem?". This is definately the case for some other things like Windows Media Player and Windows Vista!
Number five: Some extensions become no longer supported. This may be hackable, but it may lead to bugs, and the more complicated ones probably aren't hackable. Also most users don't know about the hacking anyways.

Why people didn't upgrade anything under 1.5? no idea, since I don't think any of those apply to upgrading anything under 1.5

graeme_p

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 11:41 am on Sep 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

Visits to my main site are dominated by IE, over 80%.

My blog is just under 50% FF and the same for IE. This is because there are a significant chunk of users who come there to look for my Wordpress themes and plugins. They mostly use FF.

The lesson is that most visitors use IE, so IE must work well on your site, but a lot of webmasters and bloggers (who can give you those invaluable links) use FF so you better keep them happy as well.

sc112

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:27 pm on Sep 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

FF has two major problems. A poor bookmark system (I can remember raising Mozilla bug reports about it years ago), and poor fonts for the Chinese language. In FF, a Chinese site with small fonts can be virtually illegible.

Huh? I am a reqular visitor of Yahoo Hong Kong. The Chinese fonts on Firefox look perfectly legible to me, almost the same as on IE. But Firefox can render Hong Kong specific characters whereas IE6/7 can't. And with the Firefox extensions AdBlock and FlashBlock, I don't have to be bothered by flashing ads.

The fonts on Yahoo China also look the same on Firefox as on IE. I do bilingual English/Chinese websites, and I have no legibility problems with Firefox.

The Personal Toolbar on Firefox is the main attraction for me. All my bookmarks are up front just a click or two away. If IE had a similar feature, I might use it more often.

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:56 pm on Sep 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

There are many websites I am required to use for school, banking, work etc. that require IE. FF won't work and I tried for kicks and giggles. I have never been in a situation where FF was required and IE didn't work. From where I'm standing FF isn't worth the trouble since the only benefit I can see is that I could say that I use FF. Big whoop.

innocbystr

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 3:07 am on Sep 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

I use Firefox myself, but I'd be happy if everyone that uses IE6 would move on to something else. Anything would be an improvement.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 2:26 pm on Sep 17, 2007 (gmt 0)


There are many websites I am required to use for school, banking, work etc. that require IE. FF won't work and I tried for kicks and giggles. I have never been in a situation where FF was required and IE didn't work. From where I'm standing FF isn't worth the trouble since the only benefit I can see is that I could say that I use FF. Big whoop.

I have yet to stumble upon a site that was worth using and didn't work in both IE and FF. My bank's included.

HelenDev

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 4:15 pm on Sep 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

I have yet to stumble upon a site that was worth using and didn't work in both IE and FF. My bank's included.

I think that's especially true nowadays. In the past it seemed acceptable even for big firms to have tag-soup websites which only worked in the latest version of IE, but this doesn't seem to be true any more. I haven't come across any mainstream sites lately which didn't work in FF.

I would imagine that accessibility legislation has at least something to do with this.

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:51 am on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I have yet to stumble upon a site that was worth using and didn't work in both IE and FF. My bank's included.

And I'm telling you there are several I am required to use that don't work with FF. You may not like them but you don't depend on them. It doesn't even matter what the reasons are for this. IE works. FF doesn't. You use FF. When a school or employer demands that you use IE you do it. Why should they invest a lot of money so that a few people can use FF?

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 2:14 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why should they invest a lot of money so that a few people can use FF?

That makes no sense? What money needs to be invested?

If you're talking about an intranet website, then yeah, it costs money to develop it to work in both IE and FF...though, I'd argue, it's simpler just to code to the standard and it shouldn't require more than a minimal amount of work to make it work in all browsers.

Second, if you're talking about a company's internet presence, they lose money not catering to the majority of browsers. If I want to buy something, and your site doesn't work in FF, I go elsewhere. I don't even check to see if it works in IE...it might, but it's not worth my time, I'll go to one of your competitors.

Third...if you're referring to installing FF so your staff can use it, that doesn't cost money, just don't install it. But don't stop staff who want to use it from using it.

I don't see this "cost" you're talking about.

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 3:36 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Second, if you're talking about a company's internet presence, they lose money not catering to the majority of browsers. If I want to buy something, and your site doesn't work in FF, I go elsewhere. I don't even check to see if it works in IE...it might, but it's not worth my time, I'll go to one of your competitors.

That's your opinion. I'm in a situation where the reality is quite different. Your opinion doesn't do any good at all here.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 4:20 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Meh, whatever, I really don't know what your problem is with FF...or me for that matter.

It's not an opinion that you'll lose potential customers if your site doesn't work in THEIR browser of choice. That's fact.

[edited by: Gibble at 4:24 pm (utc) on Sep. 18, 2007]

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:03 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

It's not an opinion that you'll lose potential customers if your site doesn't work in THEIR browser of choice. That's fact.

That is a ridiculous assertion. One example from the real world involves online college courses. If the college uses something that doesn't support FF what are the students going to do? Go to another school? NO, they'll use IE as indicated the requirements. You use the textbooks specified. You do the assignments. You use the browser you are told to. Going to another school because you get all pissy about having to use IE doesn't sound like an adult way to handle things. I have other examples if you'd like.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:45 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Funny that you use that specific example. Until recently I worked at a college.

When I started there 6 years prior, IE was the defacto standard. Most of the websites, internal, and external were IE specific using several IE specific "advantages".

As time went on, more and more people started using alternatives. Phone calls start coming in, and you spend a lot of time (and money) telling people to use IE, and them complaining anyhow, OR, you do things properly, code to the standard and tweak it to work in each browser.

Ultimately, the latter won out easily. It was far more economical to do things right the first time, than put up with the hassles and complaints of angry students, prospectives, alumni, faculty, and staff. Especially when you have programs that run entirely on Mac or Linux...if you supply the computer lab...shouldn't your sites and web applications work on them?

So, what kind of an image were we presenting, if we are supposed to train the workforce, yet our own staff to a shoddy job? Why, if I was planning to study CS there, would I want to? What kind of image does that website give for the CS department?

I can't think of a single "feature" of IE that would be worth using instead of something that works in all major browsers.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:48 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

You don't build a building with a 6 foot ceiling and tell tall people they can't come in? Or operate a business that isn't wheelchair accessible just because they make up a small portion (if any) of your customer base.

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 6:54 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I can't think of a single "feature" of IE that would be worth using instead of something that works in all major browsers.

Good for you. The package my school is using is designed for IE. A lot of features work with FF but not all. In any event, you should know that the vendor is responsible for the coding not the school. They can't start hacking the code to make it compatible with FF even if they wanted to.

I'd really be interested in an online classroom system that was 100% compatible with all browsers.

Gibble

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:02 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

You didn't say it was purchased code! How the hell am I to know that?

In either case, still shoddy work on their part, and not something I would recommend for purchase.

Seriously, how pathetic would it look, teaching a linux/mac course, but forcing the user to use a PC with IE to take the course?

walrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:26 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

In the past it seemed acceptable even for big firms to have tag-soup websites which only worked in the latest version of IE, but this doesn't seem to be true any more.

I bet there were some real challenges for a lot of them when it was still new. I am a very basic web designer, but I can imagine what it would be like in a big corp, with a vast custom site,typical package or cms, incorporating lots of java interactivity, tables, maybe frames, and possibly made with Frontpage, and being told to make it FF compatible.
There must be lots of old threads here from corp employees scrambling for help with all kinds of FF issues, and few around that had solutions.

Atomic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 7:31 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Seriously, how pathetic would it look, teaching a linux/mac course, but forcing the user to use a PC with IE to take the course?

I've never seen a Mac at this school. There may be a few but who knows? There are certainly no Mac courses. Hardly any Linux classes. Maybe one?

I also never said that FF issues weren't passed on to the vendor and that the vendor wouldn't try to accomodate FF users. Even so, the system is older and was built with IE in mind. Almost all of the users use FF. The syllabus says to use IE. IE is free and it seems reasonable to expect students to use it.

Murdoch

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 8:52 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

Or operate a business that isn't wheelchair accessible just because they make up a small portion (if any) of your customer base

That's kind of an off base analogy. You ARE required to create an ADA compliant site if you do business.

Regardless, FF will often make up anywhere from 5 to 25 percent of your customer base (for non-tech commerce sites). Why would you ever want to ostracize a potential sale? It's not like it really takes that much more work to code the standard properly. Hell, use IE CSS hacks if you need to, but any browser that takes up more than 1% of your traffic should be listened to (considering you get 1,000 or more hits a week or so).

I mean sure, if you work at a place that only visits IE compatible sites, then who cares, but we are talking about user bases here, not isolated incidents.

Xapti

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 4:46 am on Sep 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

My instructor just mentioned today that he could not access his college e-mail address with internet explorer anymore since he upgrade to vista (not sure if he's running IE6 or 7, or if 7 is automatic for vista). It may have been a somewhat localized problem (not something everyone has), but still an issue nonetheless where a required site didn't work with IE, but worked with FF. As far as I know, the college website (or e-mail management system) doesn't even specificly cater to browsers other than IE much (not that it's IE only or anything), although I can't say that for sure.
From where I'm standing FF isn't worth the trouble since the only benefit I can see is that I could say that I use FF. Big whoop.
No. There'd be no reason for anyone to change browsers if IE didn't suck and FF wasn't a god browser. IE has more security flaws, doesn't support web standards, isn't as easy to customize, can't customize as many things, there is a significantly smaller variety of add-ons in IE compared to FF, FF renders pages faster in general, and loads faster in general (I'm saying this from my experience on over 10 different computer systems, it is not something that should be treated as fact necessarily), FF updates more often, and has all sorts of useful features, and support for things like SVG. I probably missed some points too.

Also, I don't have anything against somone choosing Opera either, as it has similar functionality resulting in good performance, and a good browsing experience as well.

[edited by: Xapti at 4:53 am (utc) on Sep. 19, 2007]

HelenDev

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 3:19 pm on Sep 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

There must be lots of old threads here from corp employees scrambling for help with all kinds of FF issues, and few around that had solutions

I think for a lot of us who have been working in the web dev industry for a few year, this is exactly our bread and butter, sorting out old sites which didn't work well cross-platform, because most corporations sooner or later come around to the realisation that this is the best way forward.

In my experience 3rd party software vendors are the absolute worst offenders for this kind of thing. On several occasions I have had to do battle with companies who provided badly-coded apps which didn't work cross-browser/platform.

Sometimes if you get together with other people who have bought the same package, and provide legal information about why they need to conform to standards, you can apply pressure more effectively!

HarryM

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 3:58 pm on Sep 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

The point has been made that FF renders pages faster. It doesn't, it just looks faster. It renders them in a much smoother way than IE, rendering only those portions that have changed from the previous page, whereas IE re-renders the whole page. I prefer the way FF handles this.

But FF is actually slower. Previous versions of FF took 2 operating system cycles to refresh graphics memory, while IE does it in 1 cycle. I haven't checked the latest version of FF but it's probably the same.

I like to think of browsers as automobiles. IE is a solid family car which will take you more or less everywhere. FF is great on a well-maintained highway, but it can't handle bumpy roads.

walrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3430072 posted 4:27 pm on Sep 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

Sometimes if you get together with other people who have bought the same package, and provide legal information about why they need to conform to standards, you can apply pressure more effectively!

Are there many class action suits against software makers?

IE is a solid family car which will take you more or less everywhere. FF is great on a well-maintained highway, but it can't handle bumpy roads.

Netscape would be the old VW.

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