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Women in Tech

Apple's Safari Bags a Million Downloads

By Walaika Haskins MacNewsWorld ECT News Network
Jun 15, 2007 2:52 PM PT

Bugs or not, Apple's Safari 3 Internet browser, a free public beta, tweaked the interest of a considerable number of Windows users. More than 1 million copies of the browser were downloaded within the first 48 hours of its availability, Apple announced Thursday.

Apple's Safari Bags a Million Downloads

Unveiled Monday at the Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco, Safari 3, according to Apple, is the "world's fastest and easiest-to-use browser." The browser is compatible with Windows Vista and XP as well as the Mac OS.

One Million Served

Internet Explorer (IE) is the overwhelming king of the browser universe. Roughly 85 percent of PC users click on the IE icon to surf the Web, according to January 2007 statistics from OneStat.com. Safari comes in third with just over 1.6 percent, behind Mozilla's Firefox, used by nearly 12 percent of Internet users.

That Apple was able to attract enough people to log over 1 million downloads of the newly released Safari beta for PCs comes as no surprise, Van Baker, a Gartner analyst, told MacNewsWorld.

"That's not surprising at all," he said. "Just by virtue of them being Apple, they're going to get a million users out of the shoot, just out of curiosity if nothing else."

The attraction for Windows users could be as simple as a desire to try something new, according to Zippy Aima, a Frost & Sullivan analyst.

"It could be they want to just try something new or try an Apple product," she explained. "All they have to do is download it and activate it to check out what features Apple has to offer and how different it is from Internet Explorer."

Keep it Burning

Before Apple CEO Steve Jobs and the rest of the crew in Cupertino, Calif., start congratulating themselves, Baker pointed out, the true challenge for Apple was not to attract the first million, but to draw in the first 15 million or so users.

"The challenge is the first 10 or 100 million. It has to get a critical mass of people using it on a day-to-day basis and not just those checking it out."

Only time will tell with that, he explained, but it will take a little while for Apple to increase the number of Windows Safari users to that extent.

Smoothing the Way for the iPhone

Far from mounting a serious challenge for Microsoft's Internet Explorer, Baker said, the announcement had more to do with Apple's upcoming iPhone.

"Since you have a full Safari implementation on the iPhone, now companies that are looking at delivering Web 2.0 apps can look at Safari as being a platform for the PC, the Mac and the iPhone," Baker explained. "And of those three, the iPhone is the one that is most interesting."

It is the triple platform appeal that is bringing people to Safari, said Baker. "If it wasn't for that this probably wouldn't get that much attention.

"It is an attempt to give the developer's community, people developing Web 2.0 content with Ajax and such, it is to give them a tool to use on the PC to develop applications for the iPhone," he noted.

"It certainly will cause a lot more developers to begin to look at the iPhone as a platform that they might be interested in because there is so much buzz around the iPhone that it is likely it is going to take off very quickly in terms of unit volume numbers. So anyone who is developing a Web 2.0 app that lends itself to mobility can't help but be interested in the iPhone."

"And absolutely, if we get compelling Web 2.0 applications is it going to make the iPhone a more interesting platform and help increase sales of the iPhone, absolutely," he predicted.


Women in Tech
Which Big Tech CEO that testified at the Congressional Antitrust Hearing on July 29 is the most trustworthy?
Jeff Bezos of Amazon
Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook
Sundar Pichai of Google
Tim Cook of Apple
All of them are equally trustworthy to some extent.
None of them are trustworthy whatsoever.