Google Chrome Could Overtake Firefox to Become the No. 2 Browser by 2012

Chrome has been growing steadily, while Firefox can't seem to find its mojo

Web browser market share tracking is a tricky thing. Not even Mozilla or Google can have an exact idea of how many people are using their browsers, when and for how long.

With that out of the way, the latest data from StatCounter indicates a very interesting development, Google Chrome will overtake Firefox's market share worldwide by the end of the year.

Google's speedy browser has been gaining new users at a rapid pace since it became available and, while its growth has slowed down somewhat lately, it hasn't stopped.

At the same time, Firefox has been hovering around the same numbers, losing a bit of market share each month. Google Chrome's growth came mostly at the expense of Internet Explorer, but it also took a bit from Firefox.

In August, StatCounter shows Firefox as owning 27.49 percent of the market, while Chrome has 23.16 percent. For September though, Firefox is at 26.8 percent while Chrome is 23.59. The gap is closing though, both Firefox's decline and Chrome's rise have slowed down compared to previous months.

Even with the slow down, the trend is not likely to reverse, at least not in the coming months. And that should be enough for Chrome to overtake Firefox to become the number two browser in the world.

But only by StatCounter numbers, other firms monitoring the web browser market paint a slightly different picture. While the trend is the same, Chrome is catching up to Firefox, the gap is bigger if we look at figures by NetApplications.

According to those numbers, in August, Firefox owned 21 percent of the market, while Chrome just 14.46 percent. If the trend continues, Chrome will end up overtaking Firefox, but it's going to take longer to do it, sometime in 2012.

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