According to Tweeter @dovellonsky, Microsoft may be looking into porting a version of Internet Explorer to Android.
However, the source has not proven reliability before. Unlike @evleaks or other insider top-tweeters, the validity of the #rumour is not likely, but it does spring a very strong idea: that being a move to Google’s Android would make a lot of business sense for Microsoft.
Firstly, let’s take Internet Explorer’s dominance of the desktop. Altogether, NetMarketShare reports that versions of Internet Explorer on desktops globally have a 51.37% chokehold. Coming in second is Firefox, with Firefox 26 and Firefox 27 adding in 5.78% and 7.9% respectively. In third comes Google’s Chrome with a 9.86% market share on desktops. ‘Other’ browsers and older browser versions make up the remaining 25.09%, but it’s clear that Internet Explorer’s default dominance for Windows is a clear winner.
NetMarketShare’s desktop browser share February 2014
Internet Explorer 11 was only released in October 2013, so a command of 12.8% is healthy, and when it comes to browser market share on mobile devices, it’s obvious where Internet Explorer’s port to Android could make all the difference to Microsoft.
As of February 2014, Android 4.0’s own search provides a huge 23.46% of mobile browser market share, with Safari 7 on iPhones coming in with 32.71%. Chrome makes up 6.92% and various other versions for Android complete the circle.
NetMarketShare’s mobile and tablet browser share February 2014
Global smartphone shipments surpassed one billion in 2013, showing an increase of 38.4% to 2012. IDC said that about 1,004,200,000 smartphones were shipped, adding up to 55.1% of ALL mobile phones shipped in 2013.
With an exploding mobile devices market, it’s clear to see how a move by Microsoft to penetrate Android could only end well for the company.