Microsoft's official Windows blog was happy to trumpet Net Applications' latest browser marketshare numbers, which show that Internet Explorer 9's share is up to over 25 percent on computers running Windows 7. That's some clever and unsurprising data selection, but looking across all desktop platforms over the course of the year shows a very different picture. When you look at the absolute numbers, IE is still the king (browser share of 52 percent from Net Applications and 39 percent from StatCounter), but its marketshare has declined all year long, despite the introduction of IE9. Chrome, on the other hand, experienced 84 percent growth year-over-year, far beyond any other browser on the market. It now sits at 27 percent according to StatCounter or 22 percent if you ask Net Applications.

Firefox also had a tough year, as its marketshare slowly but surely dipped — depending on who you ask, its lead over Chrome has evaporated. StatCounter shows Chrome solidly in 2nd place, ahead of Firefox's 25 percent share; Net Applications shows Firefox hanging on over Chrome at 22 percent. While we felt like StatCounter jumped the gun a little last month when it announced Chrome as the 2nd place browser, it appears the browser's momentum isn't slowing down any time soon.

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Image source: Net Applications