330 Million Microsoft Edge Users?

Posted on September 15, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 95 Comments

330 Million Microsoft Edge Users?

Microsoft has made a curious claim about Microsoft Edge usage this week. Allow me to introduce the cold reality of math.

“I’m really thrilled to announce today that, earlier this month, Microsoft Edge passed over 330 million active devices worldwide,” a Microsoft executive said during an Edge Summit webinar yesterday. “This number has more than doubled since the Edge summit last year.”

The official Microsoft Edge Dev account on Twitter reiterated the claim:

“Microsoft Edge users are active on 330 million monthly devices.

There’s just one problem. It can’t be true. Not if by “active devices” you mean “people using Edge on a PC to browse the web.”

With Microsoft continuing to use its months-old 500 million figure for active Windows 10 devices, this 330 million figure suggests that over two-thirds of all Windows 10 users are somehow “actively” using Microsoft Edge.

There is just no way. But it’s not just my impression or opinion. The reason I know it’s not true is that it’s not even remotely possible that this many people are using Microsoft Edge.

Let’s do some math.

For starters, we’ll assume that there are still 1.5 billion people using PCs worldwide. I believe the figure is lower than that—much lower, like closer to 1.0 billion—but whatever. The last time Microsoft provided a figure, it was 1.5 billion. The higher number helps Microsoft’s case here.

If there are 1.5 billion people using PCs worldwide, then that means that more 1/5th of them are using Microsoft Edge. And yet. If we look at any web analytics firm’s data you care to mention, you never see Microsoft Edge with 20 percent usage share. Never.

Again, it’s not even close.

Stat Counter—which I don’t personally trust, but again, we’re giving Microsoft the benefit of the doubt here—claims that Microsoft Edge commands just 3.95 percent of web browser usage on the desktop. So if there really are 1.5 billion desktop users, then Edge accounts for only 59.25 million of them.

Not even close.

Netmarketshare—which I (and, by the way, Microsoft) trust—says that Edge now accounts for 5.66 percent of all desktop web browsing. So if there really are 1.5 billion desktop users, then Edge accounts for only 84.9 million of them.

Not even close.

Too, let’s look at Microsoft’s claim that it more than doubled Edge usage since 2016. Both StatCounter and Netmarketshare show the same basic trend: Edge usage has barely changed in one year. It went from 3.01 percent in October 2016 to 3.95 percent today, according to StatCounter. And from 5.26 percent to 5.66 percent over the same time period, according to Netmarketshare.

Not even close.

See how this works? There is no way that everyone’s math is right. And even if you believe the higher of the numbers from these two most credible of web analytics firms, Edge is nowhere near 330 million active users.

All I can conclude is that the software giant is stretching the bounds of what “active” means. Possibly to include just one usage: Microsoft Edge auto-runs whenever you first install Windows 10 or upgrade to a new version of Windows 10. And then they use it to install Google Chrome. Statistically speaking, that is.

Google Chrome, by the way, controls between 54.99 and 63.58 percent of web browser usage. You know, depending on whom you believe.

Less cynically, one other thought does occur: Microsoft also uses Edge as the default PDF reader in Windows 10. I’m willing to allow, since we have no data for this, that this functionality could (generously) lead to up to double the usage. But even then, we’re looking at 170 million “users” at most, about half Microsoft’s figure. Do people really read PDFs that much?

I doubt it, but it doesn’t matter. Not really. Because there is one key takeaway here:

There is no way that 330 million people are actively using Microsoft Edge, not as a web browser.

Sorry.

 

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Comments (106)

106 responses to “330 Million Microsoft Edge Users?”

  1. JerryH

    Yes, I do get tired of Microsoft force opening Edge every time I get a Fast Ring update. I've complained in the feedback that the Microsoft standard is to open the default browser (which - hint - is not Edge) but they just keep ignoring their own standard. I don't use Edge for anything else. But I guess I am an active user since they open it on every Insider update. (Good thing that they don't do that on Enterprise edition!).

    • Chris Blair

      In reply to JerryH: In my case, I get tired of Google posting their "Switch to Chrome ... " message each time I visit google.com using Edge. So I guess we'll have to stick with Edge/Bing or Chrome/Google to minimize our exposure to these irritations :)


  2. mebby

    I think they meant there are 330 users.

  3. ProgrammerAl

    The only thing I can think of that would make sense, is if there are apps that embed the Edge browser. UWP apps can embed the browser into them to just be a wrapper around normal apps. But I can't imagine there are a lot of those app in use.

  4. straker135

    There may be some multiple counting for sad losers like me who mostly use Edge as I do so on my 950, Surface Laptop, Surface Pro 4, homebrew desktop and on the two HTPCs in the house. Clearly I can only use a couple at a time and I acknowledge that my family say they 'hate' Edge and use Chrome on these same devices if they are doing anything. One device can use multiple browsers, obviously, as can a user over time.


    My organisation of 5,500 has to use IE for compatability with aging enterprise software but we are planning for migration to Chrome going forward. When I talk about Edge in our IS meetings they chuckle. Given that the preferred mobile devices for security and compatability in house are iPhones and iPad Pros Microsoft is pretty much screwed long term although we are going to Win 10 as a nationally mandated move in our industry for the next few years for the desktops. The way forward is however increasingly mobile which Nadella, not Ballmer, abandoned to Apple and Android. It upsets me that from a practical point of view Microsoft didn't really even try in mobile.


    The sad thing is we asked Microsoft 2 years ago for support with mobile technology in our healthcare industry when Windows Phone was still a thing and we were told that what we wanted wasn't in MSs roadmap. Dumbarses. There is no coming back from here. If indeed 330 million devices do use Edge at least once per month this is the high water mark and it's all down hill from here.

  5. Chris Blair

    Count me as one of the exceptions to the rule. I use Edge often, Chrome rarely. When I use Edge, life carries on. No drama. Just works as a web browser. I prefer its UI generally. And I trust MS (and Apple FWIW) more than Google with my data. But I agree that MS must be fudging (finessing?) their numbers. Just not sure why this is a big deal.

    • Orangeguy

      In reply to Chris Blair:

      I fit in somewhere around Chris. Do I use Edge exclusively daily, no but I do actually end up inadvertently using it daily more than any other browser. I also have an unrealistic trust that my browsing data is less traffic'd on edge than on chrome despite my efforts on both platforms. I would use Firefox exclusively but it just doesn't perform compared to chrome or edge in a discernibly better manner. Scroll performance and touch usability are the two areas I base my preference on BTW. I know MS needs growth for the Bing ad experiment, but I would gladly drop my Apple allegiance if Microsoft would become the security bastion in opposition to Google. Though I now no longer have a phone to buy from them, so trot out the iPhones. Google provides good to great tools and apps, but they all come with some strings I personally would pay to not have. I in fact do by using a non-android phone and other non ad-based freeware. If 1password ever releases their plugin for edge I will make an honest effort at making the leap, it is my last plugin holdout.


      UPDATE: I'm now using Edge with the Beta 1password plugin. WooHoo! You now have 329,999,998 people to find who are using it. But I am also a First Ring user... what does that say...

  6. John Scott

    It's also possible that some users fail to change default browser from Edge to something else. So its possible Windows calling home saying Edge is the default browser. Given everyone uses a browser, could Microsoft claim they must be using Edge? Who knows? But Microsoft clearly is cooking the books on Edge usage.

  7. conan007

    What MS claimed was active users, and what netmarketshare/statscounter measures is web usage. They are not the same thing. If someone visited 1000 websites using Chrome, this would be a greater usage than 999 people visited only one website on Edge.


    I think what "active users" meant is, by the standard of most social network metric for example Facebook, that you used that service at least once in that given month. So if you only used Edge once per month then you are a active user in that month, and I think 330 million is a very conservative estimate.

  8. Tallin

    Usage percentage does not equal number of users. I have no trouble believing that those who use Edge are for the largest part made up of those who do a very small percentage of web browsing. It's the default browser, so why change it if all you're doing is checking your email or something similar?

  9. MacLiam

    Maybe they are counting device-day usage on a monthly basis, a model under which a machine that hits edge at least once a day during the month counts for 30 uses and a machine that contacts only once on one day would count for a single use. If, say, 10 million machines Edged the internet every day, that would get you within hailing distance of the claimed figure. Then less fequent users, which I think would show a pretty steep extinction curve on device-days, would make up the rest.


    It would be interesting to hear how many Chrome and Safari "monthly devices" can be counted using the same tally methods MS has used for Edge.


    330 million? I agree: preposterous. That's not even fake news. That's just dumb news.

  10. Spineless

    The issue with comparing these numbers is that they are not comparable between number of users and % of usage.


    It is quite plausible that 330mil people are using Edge, because this number in no way means that 330mil people use Edge exclusively.

  11. VancouverNinja

    Chrome is loosing traction right now on the desktop; Edge is gaining it


    • hrlngrv

      In reply to VancouverNinja:

      Per Netmarketshare,

      What source are you using to feed your belief that Edge is gaining at Chrome's expense? To me it looks like Chrome is steady, and others are growing at IE's expense. Actually, it's rather remarkable that IE+Edge are on a trajectory to become smaller than Chrome AND separately everything else combined.

      • VancouverNinja

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        https://www.w3counter.com/trends


        You can see Chrome clearly declining and Edge clearly starting to increase in usage (second graph) . Chrome is going to continually decline at this point - Edge is a better browser and easier for people to use. Its simply a matter of time. Google is aware at this point and they have an age old issue of trying to maintain their position in the face of better technology. Rarely ends well for the incumbent.

        • hrlngrv

          In reply to VancouverNinja:

          Your source appears to be mobile + PCs combined, since Safari is higher in Aug 2017 than IE + Edge. The data I pulled from Netmarketshare was PC (well, desktop) only. Since there are very few Windows phones still in use, and not many Xboxes in use relative to phones & PCs, the vast majority of Edge users would be using Windows 10 PCs.

          As for the top chart itself, Chrome experienced a 1-month drop from 64% in Jul 2017 to 56.8% in Aug 2017. I figure that's a fine measure of Europe's professional class going on vacation in August and being civilized enough not to browse much while on vacation. It's also back-to-school month in the US and lots of other northern hemisphere nations, so a lot of new PCs with their 1 and only Edge use to download a different browser.

          The lower chart shows Edge from Jan to Aug 2017 as 2.1%, 2.2%, 2.4%, 2.3%, 2.9%, 2.7%, 2.6%, 2.7%. No % growth since May.

  12. Roger Ramjet

    The article you linked in your blog already explained what is happening. The frame you are using is totally different from the one Microsoft used, apples and oranges. You cannot translate active users using market share to number of devices....Noooooo.

    It would be relatable to number of Windows devices based on market shares only if each and every person opened only 1 web browser in that month, which is obviously nonsense.

    Put another way, an Edge active user that Microsoft claimed can also be a Chrome active user and a Safari active user etc, so obviously that doesn't make a claim about market share, which you would relate to active users by considering how many times on average (and probably also duration) each active user claimed by all browsers opened each browser that month.


  13. tbsteph

    If we cannot agree on what constitutes an "active user" the whole conversation is moot.

  14. HoloLensman

    Apples vs. Oranges or Paul's latest very bad math day.


    Live telemetry vs. statistics based on subsets of incomplete data. Stats companies' monthly stats reports have never been very accurate in terms of hard numbers, they have been less accurate in recent years due to filtering via ad-block and other privacy apps.


    Purely anecdotal, but most people I know using Windows 10 do use Edge.

  15. v_2samg

    Bad math day Paul? LOL

  16. JCerna

    The numbers are right if you consider the number of windows 10 users and the fact the edge is the default browser. Edge gets open for pdfs links clicked from email etc. So it gets "used" but probably its not the favorite for people. To me I really like edge and I think in some cases its better than chrome. I can't use it because the Windows 10 print dialog is so slow, especial with network printers. I can print a pdf in chrome in seconds and edge it could be a minute, if it works.

  17. wright_is

    The problem is, Netmarketshare and StatCounter use a very small subset of the net to get their statistics. I would guess that, in general, less than 1% of my browsing goes anywhere near sites that are covered - my normal browsing is to a very limited number of sites and they are generally not big name sites (unless Thurrott.com is being used by Netmarketshare and StatCounter in their statistics).

    And I think part of the 330 million will be people using the Cortana search results - which are often called up by mistake. I sometimes type in the name of an app I want to launch in the Start Menu and I am too quick to press enter (E.g. cmd Enter, if I am too quick, Edge starts up and shows results for cmd). I would assume that that falls under Microsoft's statistics for Edge users. If a lot of people are doing that, plus those actually using Cortana to look stuff up, you will quickly get a large number of "Edge users" that probably never go anywhere near any site used for statistics.

    Are these people "Edge users"? Probably not the whole time, they probably use Chrome or Firefox for general browsing, but they are "using" Edge at times, when these search results are being displayed.

  18. James Wilson

    I think a borderless version / option for Edge would be a good idea. Maybe Web Applications are the future? No reason why vendors can't do this now with the UWP wrapper (badly done by Amazon, not too badly done by LinkedIn on Windows 10)

  19. Rug

    I would like to know how they got those numbers, even in a general way.


    I don't see how using to get Chrome or Firefox, or read an occasional PDF would equate to "active". So, I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they filtered those out.


    If you consider the majority of Windows usage comes from the enterprise, Edge makes a lot sense. While we also support Firefox and Chrome, that decision didn't come easily. Edge is our default, and most users have stuck with it.

    • wright_is

      In reply to Rug:

      And don't forget, Cortana searches in the task bar will usually start Edge. So a landing at Bing, which will give it an active Edge user count, even if they never venture further than Bing and don't appear in other usage statistics.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to Rug:

      Why would you believe MSFT wouldn't count Edge as PDF reader or ebook reader as an active use? Likewise uses of Edge as Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Vivaldi etc downloader? I can't see how MSFT reaches 330m active devices without counting every single use of Edge.

      Edge may not be a workplace default for large enterprises. Much of the pricier software run on large enterprise intranets claims not to be compatible with Edge.

  20. Win74ever

    Windows 10 and its apps is a fail. Nothing new to see here. Cannot wait for the true Windows 7 successor.

  21. hrlngrv

    Seems to need repeating. MSFT's claim is that Edge has been actively used on 330 million devices in recent months. I figure there are a few dozen things which don't look like Edge but use Edge.

    • Roger Ramjet

      In reply to hrlngrv:

      This isn't about other things using Edge. The confusion is fully explained by the confusion as to the difference between active users and market share. The term definition of "Monthly Active Users is available on Wikipedia.

      Let me illustrate it another way, since I consider myself a "Thurrottian Idiot" who still uses a Lumia, I will try to make it really simple: Imagine the market for browsers is composed of only one customer, Paul Thurrott. He mostly uses Chrome because Google, yada yada yada. But as a blogger who tests Microsoft products he will use Edge now and then when doing this task. He will also use say Safari on Apple sometimes. So, measuring during a 1 month time frame, and if you like multiply also by amount of time spent on each browser etc, but keeping it simple; he opened/used Chrome like 900 times. Edge 50 times, Safari 50 times. In this market Chrome has 90% market share, Edge has 5, Safari has 5. But in active users, Chrome is 1, Edge 1, Safari 1. You see immediately how "market share" and "active user" numbers can give you answers that are like, um, different. To say the least. If you were to convert the active user straight to market share you get 33% three ways. You can't mix and match the two without some good conversion framework where you have some intermediate numbers.

      I would guess that most people with only a passing interest would say, well this active user thing is misleading, what I really want to know is the relative weights of these browsers in the market place. OTOH, I think the justification in general for the MAU metric is to gauge potential of 1 product, they are not interested in seriously comparing to anybody with this metric, at least not by real weight. Again, generally favored by startups and their investors when they have nothing else. If Microsoft wants to think of Edge as "a startup", after all it's a newish browser(or less hopefully, just as part of wishful thinking that will eventually bite them), then you can have an argument with them on that if you are inclined. But you need to understand your numbers first.

      • nbplopes

        In reply to Roger Ramjet:


        The problem in your reasoning is that browser market share is calculated based on usage. If you have 300 million active user than you have 300 million users. These 300 millions users is computed in browser market share. But that does not add up to the market share numbers we know.

    • HoloLensman

      In reply to hrlngrv:

      No, the telemetry is far more sophisticated than what you are thinking.

  22. Roger Ramjet

    @nbplobes, you are mistaken, below. So that there is no ambiguity, I am going to find an actual source of the market share statistics used by Thurrott(use Netmarketshare.com). Although for some reason I cannot link on this Thurrott.com website, I will excerpt and provide reference for this information.

    Here is how Netmarketshare summarizes their method:

    "We collect data from the browsers of site visitors to our exclusive on-demand network of HitsLink Analytics and SharePost clients. The network includes over 40,000 websites, and spans the globe. We ‘count’ unique visitors to our network sites, and only count one unique visit to each network site per day. This is part of our quality control process to prevent fraud, and ensure the most accurate portrayal of Internet usage market share. The data is compiled from approximately 160 million unique visits per month. The information published on [netmarketshare dot com] is an aggregation of the data from this network of hosted website traffic statistics...." You can find this information under their FAQs: "Can you explain the Net Market Share methodology for collecting data".

    You will note here that their market share is a count of "unique visits", not a count of monthly "active users". Lets go back to my prior example, Paul Thurrott. Lets imagine that Thurrott.com is one of the survey websites in this network. Of the 1000 web visits he made, 100 were to Thurrott.com, in the same ratio 90 using Chrome, 5 on Edge, 5 on Safari. The Netmarketshare data for market share is still the same as deduced before 90% Chrome, 5 Edge, 5 Safari. Active user is the same. for those counting it, 1 for Chrome, Edge 1, Safari 1.

    To get into it a little further, note that we had only 1 user (using 1 device), but each of 3 browsers claimed 1 active user. Now, you can see how someone who is not fully into it can mistakenly add up the active users and say well there are 3 unique users in this market, when there is actually only 1. Essentially, this is the error that Thurrott made with the Microsoft numbers when he operated the Edge marketshare on this data (like, OMG, there are only tops 1.5B (unique) Windows devices, how can you claim 330M active users and at the same time we know you have only a 5% market share!). The implication is that the Microsoft active user claim implies there must be something like 6B (unique) Windows devices.

    But the error isn't Microsoft's.


  23. markbyrn

    "And then they use it to install Google Chrome." that's me plus Firefox. 

  24. phoenix50

    Paul, if the discrepancy is as massive as you suggest, why would they completely, utterly and totally LIE about it?


    Surely they must know that someone would "do the math" as you put it?


    Why set themselves up?


    Someone else made the point - if we cannot agree on how it is being measured, then the whole exercise is pointless.

  25. jrickel96

    There are ways other than PDF files that Edge will be used regularly by people. The installed version of Skype on Windows 10 - Skype Preview - can only use Edge for links shared, download links, etc. If I install the desktop version, it will then use my default browser (which is Chrome), but for months I have used the built in Skype so when I've gotten download links to work on or had links sent to me for business I do in Skype, it opens Edge. I rarely used Edge otherwise, but I would open it several times a week and use it to download test builds that are several GB in size (and I have to say I actually like Edge better for downloads - Chrome seems to suffer severe corruption issues with large files that Edge and Firefox don't run into in my experience).


    I would not be surprised if a lot of people just use the built in Skype and end up opening things in Edge because of it.

  26. Tiny

    I wonder if I'm an Edge user? My current lineup is:

    1 - Linux Ubuntu (main machine)

    1 - Linux machine for testing distros

    2 - Windows 7 machines

    1 - Windows 10 machine

    Of course, the only computer that will run the Edge browser is the Windows 10 machine. Every time I turn it on, I use Edge to check my Bing Rewards. That happens about once a week. Am I part of the 330 million?

  27. George Semple

    Well, I can say I use it exclusively on my three small form factor devices (a Lenovo Miix 300, a NuVision 10.1 and an HP Stream 7) and on my Insider test laptop. While those devices do not see a ton of use, I probably do engage in a handful of browser sessions a week on each. Still... I'm the exception to the rule and the math clearly doesn't add up.

  28. Tunrip

    I wonder what the figures from StatCounter and NetMarketShare look like if we could take mobile users out of them?


  29. Jeremiah Moss

    This certainly involves opening Edge for whatever reason, even if it's not somebody's primary browser. Reasons could include:


    * Yes, as a PDF reader, and I wouldn't underestimate its usage as a PDF reader. Everybody who works with a business like a bank or the IRS needs to read PDFs. Nothing has replaced the PDF, so I don't see a reason for the format to decline in popularity.


    * Briefly opening Edge because of incompatibilities with other browsers.


    * I'm thinking that some applications that integrate HTML functionality may be showing up as Edge.


    * Some applications may open up Edge instead of the default browser when they need to open a web page.


    Basically - I think that Microsoft is counting anything and everything that even touches Edge in some way as an "active device" using Edge, even if it's only briefly.

    • MikeGalos

      In reply to Jeremiah_Moss:

      Which is probably how Mozilla is claiming 500 million.

      Or Google has found a way to doctor things on the sites that score usage. (Something has them a bit spooked, after all. The frequency of "You aren't using Chrome, would you like to switch now?" and "I see you've changed pages on this site have you changed your mind and decided to use Chrome?" ads seem to be way up and way more aggressive.

  30. MikeGalos

    So how did Microsoft say they determined that number when you asked them for comment?

    And what's your view on Mozilla's claim that it's used by half a billion people around the world?


    Oh, and Microsoft also said that Edge supported an additional 75 web standards and its HTML5test score was now up to 476

    And they stated they're the only major browser with a 100% HTML5Accessability core (compared to 81% for Chrome and only 73% for Safari)

    Any comments on those great standards scores?


  31. toph36

    "Usage" and "User" are definitely two different things. I have Windows 10 at work (and home) and do use Edge primarily, but we all have IE and Chrome on our machines as well. There are some sites that I need to use Chrome for, and one application that I need to use IE for. Otherwise, I prefer Edge at this point. Anyway, I am a "User" of all three to some extent, but my usage of Edge would be the most. Even Paul is a user of Edge, as he is testing it often, even though he is using Chrome the most.

  32. G_Mel

    I only use Edge for Bing Rewards. So I guess it is active, ish?

  33. skane2600

    The most amazing thing to me is why MS is even bothering to make these claims. Are they really likely to increase Edge's market share? Is it to fool naive investors? I think Edge represents , like live tiles and UWP, MS's unwillingness to admit mistakes and move on.

  34. chump2010

    Just wanted to say that the count of an active user is if Edge is opened once per month. Given that a lot of people will leave edge as their default browser and so forth and given that updates may open Edge too, I am guessing that is how they came to 330million active devices. It does not mean that people are regularly browsing with it or using it for very much, just that once a month it opens. eg you click on a link and it may open in Edge. You open a pdf and it may open in edge etc etc.


    Source: www.techjuice.pk/microsoft-edge-active-users-doubled-one-year/


    There is one thing to keep in mind that even if a user opens Microsoft Edge once in a month, he’ll be counted as a monthly active user. So that does not clearly show the daily number of active users. People might open it just to check some websites that how they look on Edge or use it to download some more browsers.

  35. matsan

    statcounter doesn't include the users that immediately after setting up their computer open edge, type in "get chrome" in the address bar and close edge for good after download is complete. I guess Microsoft defines a "Edge User" as someone that have spent even a fraction of a second in Edge as a "user".

  36. Stooks

    I don't believe the number either.


    That said after Google's Think Tank heavy hand tactic's a few weeks ago I changed by default browser to Edge to see if I could use it. I only use Ublock Orgin with Chrome and it is available for Edge as well. So far I have had no issues to speak of. I was able to watch the Apple event from Edge:) This post is coming from Edge.


    I will keep Chrome around for a while in case of issues but Edge works good enough right now.


  37. Supergregnuma1

    Not that I am saying that I believe the 330 million number, but include in your numbers the Xbox users who only have edge as a browsing experience the few last vestiges of windows phone users who also are likely to use edge. Again I don't know the math but I imagine those users are thrown into Microsoft's numbers.

  38. Ugur

    Yeah, total hoax. I have over 10 Windows 10 machines where i work right now and none of those users are using edge, like, ever.

    All of them only used Edge pretty much only once: to download Chrome.

    But if MS for it's number means people who sometime, even if only once or twice opened Edge (to then hardly ever use it again), yeah, then one could say it's that many active users probably.

  39. Bats

    It's fuzzy talk. Following Microsoft all these years, you have to parse everything they say.


    Remember how Paul used to describe the rollout of Windows 10 as highly successful because so many people downloaded it? It's like the same thing here. Or how about , when Microsoft used the term "shipped" when referring to Xbox sales? All fuzzy talk.


    The quote is "Microsoft Edge users are active on 330 million monthly devices." This could mean anything. The subject is not users, it's devices.


    Again, the subject is not users, it's DEVICES.


    Technically speaking...lol...Microsoft isn't LYING.

  40. beatnixxx

    As hinted here, I'm guessing this explains why it's a PDF reader, it's an e-book reader, etc. All meant to goose the numbers upward, because it doesn't really make sense otherwise.


    I use Edge pretty regularly when I'm using my Surface as a tablet, but in those cases it's mostly to watch Amazon Prime Video and/or YouTube, because I seem to get the best battery life. For everything else, Edge is serviceable but not preferable.

  41. slartybartmark

    This was measured during the Apple Keynote as everyone on Windows was forced to use Edge to watch it.

  42. harmjr

    Sean Spicer's next gig should be a Microsoft because the they just surpassed delusional.

    Sorry Paul I didn't read this article because that claim is so out in left field its not worth doing all the work you did explaining the math. Microsoft's claim should come with ocean front property in Arizona!

  43. hrlngrv

    Re math, 330 / 500 is close to but below 2/3.

    As for the definition of active devices, perhaps that means Windows 10 PCs on which users haven't figured out how to remove Edge from the Start menu, or perhaps had it still associated with a few of the myriad of file types Windows 10 defaults to Edge. I figure the 330m figure comes from MSFT's own Windows 10 telemetry rather than from any web usage statistics. TBH, I really wouldn't be surprised if 330m Windows 10 machines had Edge as their only PDF reader, and I wouldn't be surprised if MSFT counted file associations even if unused when counting active devices.

  44. Stokkolm

    Guys, the quote is “Microsoft Edge users are active on 330 million monthly devices." The key word being monthly, so opening Edge once to get Chrome doesn't apply unless they did it this month.

  45. wizarrc

    Regarding that Edge opening PDFs by default thing. Microsoft for the most part has access to this telemetry instantaneously. What if this month alone, because of the Equifax fiasco, everyone jumped on their computer, opened chrome, and froze their credit, then printed to PDF the PIN number, and opened it to verify in you guessed it, Edge. Microsoft saw that jump tick, and ran with it!

  46. wolters

    I MIGHT, just MIGHT use Edge if it ran on Android. I really like the Chrome sync...main reason I use chrome.

  47. darkgrayknight

    Pretty sure the math you are using doesn't exactly add up to reality either. StatCounter and NetMarketShare are still samplings and not everyone using the web. Then MS is going to use the greatest number of possible users which will include all those that open Edge to download Chrome/Firefox/etc. In which case it's interesting it is only 330 million active users for 500 million Windows 10 computers. So they probably limit their inclusion to that have opened Edge in the past year or something like that.

  48. t3chguy

    -Webview... all apps that use webview most likely count as Edge users as it uses their engine.

    -Say what you want, but all animations and transitions work the smoothest on Edge so it is most enjoyable experience... until you need addons, like search previews or sidebar tabs.

    -Most people are also too lazy to switch default browser, me included.

    On company site Edge has 5.9%. imgur.com/a/OvLbV

    No idea how those 2 do their measurement but all sites would be different anyway


  49. Simard57

    post a survey of your users/views to get a sense what browser(s) they use. might be interesting to see if your audience is representative of the stats that get thrown around.


    I am sure I am in a minority

  50. Jeff Jones

    Maybe they are counting every time Cortana returns a Bing search when I'm just trying to search the Start menu.

  51. ScottK

    Hold-up a moment here, folks.


    So, we are relying on stats...gathered by two metrics companies...that gather stats...based on visits...where their code-chunk is embedded in a website and is required to be used in order to gather stats. Am I right?


    Based on the non-assumptive statement above - which is based on info gleaned directly from both services - the only way that both services can gather stats is if their code is embedded by the author or webmaster of any given website.


    Hence, for the claims of market-share gathered from both sites to accurately reflect all browser usage, one or the other must be included by one or the other service, with no overlap, on every single website in existence today. It's impossible for both services combined to have that level of coverage.


    Really, Paul? You're going to use these metrics to support Browser Usage Levels? The numbers generated by hit-counters for web pages? Seriously?


    I'll agree that the "330 Million" claim by Microsoft is a bit high...but come on! Those metrics from StatsCounter & Netmarketshare can never be used to realistically show overall Internet-wide browser usage, because it relies on someone manually including their website in the sample set: it's only a sampling based on a very small sample-set versus every site on the Interwebtubes, and one that is nearly impossible to extrapolate to real-world numbers, since the sample size is determined by at-will inclusion by web designers & webmasters for websites.


    I'd rather trust Microsoft's Telemetry showing regular usage of Edge than a poorly-gathered & relied-on sample-set.


    You're better than this, Paul - drop the cynicism.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to ScottK:

      Nope, Netmarketshare and StatCounter just sample some, not all, web sites. I believe both sample from tens of thousands of sites, but definitely not from the entire Internet. Unless usage by site differs substantially by browser (say Edge being far more commonly used for illegal sites and sites with no more than a few dozen monthly visits then the others), sampling should provide reasonable estimates of % usage across all browsers.

      Also, the web sites Netmarketshare and StatCounter sample from automatically log browser IDs from visitors, and it ain't that difficult for web sites to retain those browser IDs for a few days assuming Netmarketshare and StatCounter collect those logs continuously over the course of a month. Nothing manual about this. After all, we are in the computer age.

    • Chris Payne

      In reply to ScottK:

      Well, hold on. Sampling is definitely how (at least) Netmarketshare works... they claim their beacon is on 40k sites and tracks 160 million unique visits every month. Basic statistics shows you how you can (very) accurately extrapolate from a smaller data set to a large one, within a margin of error. So just because they don't cover *every* website everywhere, doesn't mean their data isn't statistically accurate. (I have a background in statistics and engineering.)

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to unkinected:

        For completeness, sampling is fine when the population's distribution is approximately symmetric, and the point estimate is within its margin of error usually 95% of the time. That last phrase is usually omitted, but it does mean 1 time out of 20 sampling could give possibly very inaccurate results.

  52. redstar92

    Not sure why all the hate for edge. If they are lying they are lying to themselves... I use edge all day every day on multiple devices. Its improved a ton and its still a lot lighter than chrome. Try it if you haven't in a while before you hate on it.



  53. Nic

    I figure it's pretty simple. Edge takes over your machine in Windows 10, and trying to salvage it so that you can actually use Chrome, and have Chrome stay the default seems to be a task that it is not possible to complete. I constantly find things opening up in Edge that I have previously set to open with other software. I'm frankly more disgusted about the way that Microsoft are shoving this worthless piece of garbage down our throats than any of the other shenanigans that they have pulled over the last 18 months.

  54. eeisner

    All I can conclude is that the software giant is stretching the bounds of what “active” means. Possibly to include just one usage: Microsoft Edge auto-runs whenever you first install Windows 10 or upgrade to a new version of Windows 10. And then they use it to install Google Chrome. Statistically speaking, that is.


    My exact thought process. If I run Edge once a month to open up a PDF, am I an active user? And how long am I considered an active user for? If I open up Edge to install Chrome or Firefox, which most Windows 10 users will wind up doing, when does Microsoft STOP calling me an active user? Do I need to go a week without opening Edge? A month? 6 months?


    This is why the CMO at my last company hated when our outsourced PR firm would boast about impressions on an article. Yea, it's great that we had up to 500k impressions, but how many people actually read the article? clicked the link to our website or Amazon listing? bought the product because of the article? All inflated, BS numbers to sound better - whether it's Microsoft making Edge sound better or PR firms making their work sound better.

  55. maxpayi

    :))) what do you expect Paul? It's all Microsoft knows these days: to lie hoping that users will actually believe this crap. Of course, some desperate fanboys will believe anything that comes out of Nadella & Co., but besides those few, who on earth would believe a single word that comes out of Microsoon?

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