WESTBOROUGH, 4/23/2010 – IT departments are preventing Internet Explorer 6 from fading away, according to a study by online ad network Chitika.  The study looked at the hour-by-hour market share of the top Internet browsers, and found that IE6 drops from 13% of all browser usage during the daytime to less than 6% after business hours, highlighting the corporate world’s role in the decade-old browser’s continued survival.

Launched in 2001 with Windows XP, Internet Explorer 6 has long been a bastion of corporate IT departments.  Despite its reputation as a security nightmare, its wide market share over the past decade and its inclusion as default web browser in XP has helped fuel its surprising longevity.  Web developers, perhaps sick of the extra effort necessary to design IE6-compliant sites, held a virtual ‘funeral’ for it in March, but it continues to hold a market share similar to or higher than advanced browsers like Apple’s Safari and Google’s Chrome.

Looking at the hourly market share is particularly telling.  Between 5AM and 2PM Central time, Internet Explorer 6 holds fairly steady at about 13% of all Web traffic.  After 2PM, however, the usage of IE6 drops off significantly, mirrored by a rise in the usage of Firefox, Safari, and Microsoft’s latest, Internet Explorer 8.

Hourly Browser Usage

“It almost looks like individual Internet users are more tech-advanced at home than the IT departments where they work,” says Alden DoRosario, Chitika’s CTO.  “It’s crazy to think that people whose job description revolves around employees having secure ways to browse the Web would keep IE6 alive, while these same employees go home to more secure browsers.”

When broken down on a day-by-day basis, a similar pattern emerges: Monday through Friday, IE6 is the fourth most used browser.  On weekends, it loses almost half of its market share to Firefox and IE8.

IE6 by Day

About Chitika

Chitika, Inc., is a search-based online advertising network, leading the way in intent-based advertising and search engine insights.  Chitika provides publishers with an innovative way to monetize search engine traffic, and advertisers a new way of generating leads with clear consumer intent.  With over 60,000 sites and 2 billion monthly impressions, the Chitika network is the pulse of the online world.  Through research and targeting, Chitika continually evolves its image as “the ad network that knows when not to show ads.”  For more information, visit https://chitika.com


Daniel Ruby
Research Director, Online Insights
Chitika, Inc.
+866.441.7203 x966

Looking to avoid font mistakes in your usability testing? Poll the People has you covered! Sign up for a free account and put our platform to the test. With our easy-to-use interface and comprehensive results, you’ll be able to avoid font mistakes and get the most out of your usability testing. Don’t wait, sign up today!