April 2, 2012 at 3:04 PM ET
After more than a year of decline, Internet Explorer may be on the rise again: the Web browser showed a slight gain in users for the month of March, according to a Web metrics firm.
IE, which had just over 60 percent of the browser market as of November 2010, has been sliding, steadily losing ground to Google's Chrome browser, as well as to Apple's Safari browser, reaching 51.87 in December 2011, according to Net Applications.
(Msnbc.com is a joint venture of Microsoft and NBCUniversal.)
But in what could be a reversal, Microsoft's browser, revitalized in Internet Explorer 9 -- and judged by some to be the safest Web browser -- has been edging up. In January, it had 52.96 percent; February, slipped to 52.84 percent; and March, up to 53.83 percent.
In March, Mozilla's FIrefox browser was at 20.55 percent; Chrome, at 18.57 percent; Safari at 5.07 percent, Net Applications said:
While it may too soon for Microsoft to break out the champagne, "As March comes to a close and we review the latest usage share data from Net Applications, we continue to see great strides made against our core metric: IE9 share on Windows 7," wrote Roger Capriotti, director of Internet Explorer product marketing, on Microsoft's Exploring IE blog.
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