Browsers are what you use when there isn’t a dedicated application to pave the way for whatever you need to do. Who has the most popular browsers? Well, there’s Google’s Chrome, Apple’s Safari, Mozilla’s Firefox, Windows Edge or IE, and one you’ve likely never seen.
Downloads vs. Usage
The Ever Willing To Brag About Itself company, Samsung, wants the world to know that its mobile browser had more downloads than Mozilla’s Firefox or that Chinese company that owns Opera. Combined.
That’s right. Samsung’s browser has been downloaded more than a billion times from the Google Play Store. Note that downloads don’t really reflect installs because many of us download an app to try, then delete it when we find out it’s really crummy. And, many of us download and install apps but seldom use them, so there’s that whole disparity thing between downloads, installs, and usage.
Still, the ever honest Samsung wants people to know its browser is a monster. On Android.
Taylor Kerns has a few caveats:
Now, there are a couple of caveats here: for one, Samsung’s browser comes pre-loaded on Samsung devices, of which each activation counts as an “install.”
Samsung sells more than 250-million smartphones a year, so it didn’t take long to hit the 1-billion ‘installed‘ milestone, did it? Note that Firefox and Opera do not come installed on smartphones.
We really don’t know how far behind Firefox and Opera are to Samsung because of how numbers are counted by Google.
Both Firefox’s and Opera’s Play Store listings report that each browser has “100,000,000+” installs, which, because of the somewhat silly way figures are reported on Android’s app marketplace, means their combined installs total anywhere between 200 million and 999,999,998.
Samsung’s browser gets good marks from technology reviewers but doesn’t show up very high on the list of popular mobile browsers, dominated by Chrome and Safari with a total of nearly 90-percent.
What’s interesting in such numbers is how well Safari performs considering that Apple’s popular iPhone and iPad have such low marketshare compared to Android devices. Just how valuable is Safari to Google? Sara Salinas:
Analysts at Goldman Sachs estimate more than 20 percent of Apple’s burgeoning services revenue comes from Google.
How valuable is Samsung’s browser to Android users? It hardly shows up as being used at all.