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Microsoft Edge is closing the gap with Safari for second place in the great browser war

Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Edge (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Desktop browser market share has been seeing a shakeup over the course of 2021 and 2022.
  • Microsoft Edge is making steady progress toward matching Safari's market share percentage.
  • Google Chrome continues to lose market share, albeit by very little amounts, meaning it will remain the uncontested king for the foreseeable future.

Beating out the established players is no easy task, but Microsoft Edge is slowly on its way to doing just that. Having risen from 8.1% of global desktop browser market share in February 2021 to 9.56% in February 2022, it's now within spitting distance of Safari. According to Statcounter, Safari has gone from 10.27% in February 2021 down to 9.75% in February 2022. Based on these figures, it appears the tides are turning.

If the two browsers keep trending in the directions they're currently headed, Edge will overtake the silver medalist browser in a matter of months. Meanwhile, Chrome remains untouchable in a distant first place, since it sits high above the others with 64.92% market share as of February 2022.

Source: StatCounter Global Stats - Browser Market Share

Even if Edge clutches silver, it's not worth getting hopes up for a gold sweep anytime soon. That's not going to stop Edge from trying to better itself in the meantime, though. Regardless of its place in the market, Edge is always releasing new updates to better its overall user experience. For example, with its money-minded features, the browser has helped save users millions upon millions of dollars.

In the event you feel the need to always be on the winning (in market share) team and are tired of Edge and Microsoft in general, don't forget you can now transform your PC into a Chromebook so every fiber of its being is shiny and chrome.

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to robert.carnevale@futurenet.com.

43 Comments
  • Good news for Team Edge. But in all devices, Safari is still way ahead of Edge.
    19.84% marketshare (Safari), vs. 4.12% (Edge). When it comes to just mobile devices, Edge does not even show up on the graph :(. Does it show up as something else? FWIW, I use Edge on all my devices now - my Android phone, my Windows PCs, and even my Mac whenever I boot it up to do development work. I really like Edge.
  • kodos78, that's to be expected. I'm not even sure if Edge shows up as Edge on mobile in the stat counts (it might), because it uses Safari on iOS for rendering. It's more like a wrapper or frame around Safari. It might also use Chrome on Android for rendering, but not sure on that (because Edge is already based on Chromium, same as Chrome, it might run on its own). The main point of Edge on mobile is to improve the experience of using it on Windows for those who want a consistent experience -- shared bookmarks and passwords.
  • Google doesn't enforce the Chrome on Android. Edge uses Edge.
  • I think the main take away of the graph is that Chrome is on a clear decline since last Summer.
  • This is good news. There might be a boost for Edge if it does surpass Safari. There's a segment of users who have no interest in Edge as some fringe browser that's even behind Mac users (their perspective). Many of these users are the same who stuck with IE when Chrome was on the rise. However, if Edge becomes the #2 browser, even if that's only by another fraction of a point change to market share, it will gain added credibility to that segment of the browser market and likely make at least modest additional traction.
  • I've dumped Chrome after using it solely for many years. I feel like Edge just runs much faster and smoother on my Surface Pro, and it's not too bad on my Surface Duo 2. I do use firefox on the surface pro for facebook and some google-related things such as gmail.
  • I use Chrome on the occasions where I need to use Google Services (not that often). So whatever data tracking they're getting, it's limited to data they already have access to through the services they're providing. I use Edge for most other things. Still use Firefox and Opera for various web tests, but where I used to use them a lot, now I rarely find myself turning to them. The different profiles in Edge give me the flexibility to have multiple browser configurations all with the same browser. Generally, very, very happy with Edge across my PC's and mobile.
  • I'm a bit of the opposite. My entire job is based on Chrome services. I prefer using Edge at home and at work. Edge does a good job if you add the extensions for google suites.
  • What are Chrome services?
  • What Google services don't work just as well in Edge? Even Duo can be easily fixed with a User Agent extension.
  • We're #2! We're #2! We're #2! ...
    (a real participation trophy moment)
  • On one hand, yeah. Distant second is distant second. On the other, being on the podium at all isn't inherently something to outright scoff at.
  • "Meanwhile, Chrome remains untouchable in a distant first place, since it sits high above the others with 64.92% market share as of February 2022." But did you note that all these browsers (Edge, Safari, Firefox & Opera) got all their little tick up from June2021 to now at the expense of Chrome.
    Keep up the distant first place and until that adage "little drop of water maker a mighty ocean" creeps up on Chrome.
    IE story or history should teach us something, Chrome ate IE lunch little tick up at a time until it exploded.
  • Safari??? Would people use that if it wasn't the default browser on iPhones?
  • Safari is not a bad browser, from what I have used of it. People normally do use the default browser as it is easier and less hassle. Look how long Internet Exploder lasted, and it is still being used. The reason Chrome got to where it is on Windows based machines is that it was added to different software and also Google pushed it on their websites., which I have no problem with as long as it is not the main thing on a website. I do have a problem with the Os trying to push browsers onto me and getting me to use certain search engines, and that includes Android as well as Windows.
    i don't use Edge, don't want to use Edge, any more than I want to use Chrome.
  • Edge's web based new page is an abomination
  • Change the settings . . .
  • Too me, no difference in peddling a browser from google.com or an ad in the OS. Both should be able to be turned off.
  • You can turn them off.
  • Chrome became #1 by just being way better than anything else when it launched. It was so much better everyone switched quite quickly. It is a bit bloated now, but still great.
  • A bit bloated?
  • That isn't the reason got to where it is in Windows. It made sense to use Chrome because they were already using Google Search. Also, it's because it was a lot better than Internet Explorer and Microsoft weren't offering an alternative.
  • This story is only looking at desktop browsers (as it clearly states), so iPhone defaults are not relevant. As another poster noted if you include mobile Safari is still way ahead of Edge (4:1).
  • Not only the default but the rendering engine for all browser on iOS/iPadOS. Mad they get away with that.
  • i have it as a secondary browser my main browser remain firefox
  • couldn't pay me to use mozilla. the CEO came out and is now 100% anti freedom of speech. wants to be able to stifle anyone it wants. and wants to promote voices they "agree" with. basically, they hate freedom of speech and are now dead to me.
  • What? Mitchel-baker did not come out, she's married to a man, & has 1 child (son).
  • That was the previous CEO and was forced to leave / resign because of this scandal.
  • Basicly there are 6.5 people using Chrome to 1 person using Edge or Sufari. Not as big of a difference as 65% vs 10% sounds.
  • Um, the numbers are exactly the same. For every billion people using Edge or Safari, there are 6.5 billion using Chrome. Math not your major? Distant second place is still distant second place.
  • Why be so negative? I’ve read your many comments and note how insufferably opinionated you are. Others are entitled to their opinions as well.
  • Edge is my default browser on my PC and Mac. Love it. it should be in 1st place. Chrome is Not better. people should switch to Edge.
  • I would imagine that, were most Chrome users to come in cold and be offered Chrome and Edge, I doubt that a significant majority would choose Chrome. It would likely be around 50/50. Now that Chrome is established though, most people just don't have a reason to change. I doubt that many people have a major issue with Chrome that Edge fixes. Microsoft will have to wait for current Chrome users to die off, which could take a while. Even then, many children will just use the same browser as their parents or even what they use at school, so it's hard to see how Microsoft could challenge Google in this space unless Google somehow makes a major misstep. There just aren't any revolutionary browsers features left to be introduced. Even if Edge is actually better, it's not likely to be better enough that the majority of Chrome users could be bothered to change.
  • Considering the numbers involved here, this is nothing to brag about. There are WAY more Windows desktops - where Edge comes preinstalled - than Mac desktops. Yet more people are using Safari?
  • I like Edge except that you cannot change the 'mini menu on text selection' (it can only search with Bing and it works very bad with a touchscreen, and if you turn it off the right click text menu does not work either on touch). I am thinking on switching now because its quite annoying.
  • On my personal devices for the past 15 years, I only allowed Firefox and Edge to be installed. At work, I've used Safari and Chrome -- I don't like those browsers though.
  • I am excited to see what would happen when Google releases Nearby share between Chrome Desktop and Android phones.
  • I recently reset my laptop and decided to try out Edge. I like it and will probably stick with it over Firefox. I'm also trying Edge exclusively on one phone while I keep Firefox on a second device. I can see myself going 100% Edge.
  • This would be Big News 15 years ago, when the “great browser war” was actually relevant. Today, the vast majority of people use the internet without a browser. 15 years ago, companies used to say “visit us at wwwdotwhateverdotcom”. Today it is all “download our app”. People today use apps on their phones. No one is interested in typing/copying/pasting a long string of gibberish into a “web browser”. That is ancient history, along with DVDs, AM radio and incandescent light bulbs. “We are almost #2 because our original software was a POS so we gave up and use the same software as #1 in a category that no one cares about” is nothing to brag about.
  • I’m not downloading an app for every site. You can’t block ads with apps. Only reason to use an app is if they make the website non-functional (reddit) or you want to always stay logged in.
  • Edge offers great rewards
  • Google Chrome is top dog mainly b/c it ships with Android OSes, and not many phone users opt for installing other web browsers from the Play Store, like the Chromium-based Bromite (fDroid) Yandex, Opera, or Brave...ect..much less install extensions that improve and enhance browsing functionality, and security/privacy. (including search engines). I tend to avoid using apps whenever possible, b/c they lock me into viewing their content w/o my having any input or control. Been using Firefox, since it was called Firebird, so its still my browser of choice! As it is for TOR. The primary drawback to using smartphones and Linux/Unix distros is that they aren't amenable to portable software, unlike Windows OSes, which is why I always go back to primarily using Windows after awhile. But with Hyper V, GApps (Android), QEMU, or Virtual Box/Player, a Windows user can experiment with and learn how to use various distros in a virtualized state. Microsoft Edge on Win 10/11 behaves like Chrome on Android, it can't be deleted, only deprecated. And M$'s Bing defaults as the search engine for any other browser, unless the user is willing to dig through settings on Windows and browsers, and/or installs a search engine as an extension to change it. Rather than subscribe to a VPN, I hop from browser to browser every few days. I use many versions /profiles of Firefox (ESR/Beta/Nightly) in portable mode, as well as many portable Chrome (Beta/Dev/Canary) or Chromium-based browsers such as "unGoogled" Chromium, Vivaldi, Slimjet, and Opera to do so. There are also some search engines which offer TOR to obfuscate web searches such as SearX, MetaGer(dot)org, and Onion. But the TOR engine has to be installed on Windows and activated outside of those search engines for it to work.
  • Back in 1994/95 I was using Netscape. Everyone was. Then IE 3.0 came along, and then came a real browser war, or was it just a hostile takeover. I don't know if we'll ever see that again...don't know if Chrome will ever be dethroned with Google being so dominant.