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Firefox: 30 percent of the world market

Mozilla releases its first quarterly statistical report, which is chock-full of stats a only a geek could love.

Nearly a third of the worldwide web browser market appears to be using Mozilla's Firefox.

That's what Mozilla figured out after crunching numbers from a variety of firms — StatCounter, Quantcast, Net Applications and Gemius — and mixing in its own data. The open source browser's largest market share is in Europe, with nearly 40 percent penetration (152.7 million users). The company rather cheerily pointed out that wasn't even the browser's largest market penetration. In Antarctica, StatCounter gives Mozilla 80 percent of the market.

Interestingly, the nation with the biggest growth in Firefox downloads was Russia, though at least part of that occurred when Mozilla chairman Mitchell Baker traveled there. But that was only one spike over the entire first quarter, over which time downloads grew 20 percent in Russia.

In Indonesia, Firefox accounts for more than 60 percent of the market share. In North America, marketshare is 26 percent - 100 million users.

What I found more interesting than these stats, however, was a part of Mozilla's first-ever user survey that showed when people were using their browsers. It's an interesting insight into people's usage patterns. And, to me anyhow, it seemed to reflect a flattening out of time across the United States.

What do I mean by that? Simply put, East Coasters used to get up, get to work and expect the rest of the nation (and world, frankly) to catch up. And when it hit 5 p.m. from Maine to Florida, people in the business world turned off their computers and headed home.

But the day is starting later in the east - specifically in New York, according to Mozilla's survey. From 5 to 9 a.m., a larger percentage of people are booting up their computers in California than in New York. New York catches up by 10 a.m. - which is 7 a.m. California time. It seems as if the round-the-clock nature of the Internet has pushed the East Coast workday a bit later and perhaps moved the West Coast workday a couple hours earlier. That's how I've found my days moving lately, anyhow.

Mozilla also looked at Wyoming (two hours behind New York) and Hawaii (five hours behind New York in the winter months) and found a much larger percentage of users in those states are booting up their Firefox during those same hours. Again, starting with 10 a.m., New York pulls out front again.

Especially with such a large percentage of the tech industry on the West Coast, there are certain folks who can't really get their days going until a little later if they're on the East Coast. It'll be interesting to see if this was just a blip or if Mozilla's onto something when it comes out with its second-quarter data.

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