Internet Explorer 8, 9 usage decline is quite slow

With the support for Windows XP ending in three weeks, we as web developers would hope that usage of Internet Explorer (the newest version of IE to run on Windows XP) to rapidly approach zero.

Support for Windows XP is ending

Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem to be the case. Looking at statistics from StatCounter, it appears that IE8 usage is still 7-8% in the USA and Japan. Encouragingly, the pace of usage decline seems to be accelerating and we might reach almost zero within the year 2015.

StatCounter browser version partially combined US monthly 201302 201402

StatCounter browser version partially combined JP monthly 201302 201402

What is more troublesome is IE9 data. IE9 usage is declining and is already quite low at 5-7%. However the pace of usage decline is quite slow and it looks like it will be with us at least as long as IE8. This is probably due to corporations blocking automatic updating of Internet Explorer.

Analyzing StatCounter data at per-day resolution, we can see that before IE10 debuted, IE9 was used a lot during weekends. However, after IE10 was introduced and most of the consumer users shifted to IE10, corporate users remained on IE9. As a result, IE9 usage became more pronounced during week days.

StatCounter browser version partially combined US daily 20120201 20140231

StatCounter browser version partially combined JP daily 20120201 20140231

In summary, despite Windows XP not being supported after April this year, it looks like IE8 will still be with us, at least till the end of this year. IE9 also looks quite stubborn and since it’s on Windows Vista and 7, it’s unlikely that we will see it go away. We web developers will still have to support these legacy browsers for another year.