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Study: Navigator Top Browser in the Enterprise

Netscape Navigator is the browser of choice among enterprise users, beating out rival Microsoft's Internet Explorer by 20 percent, according to a new study released today by Zona Research Inc.

Of the 113 businesses polled, 60 percent of the respondents indicated Netscape's Navigator is the preferred primary browser, while 40 percent favored Microsoft's IE. A third-party browser was not indicated by any of those queried for the first time in the study's two-year history.

Netscape's Navigator and Communicator products have retained leader positions among browsers in the enterprise arena, gaining six percentage points since the previous browser study conducted in July.

"We believe that the rise in share of Netscape's browser can be attributed to Navigator being made available at no cost earlier this year and that users continue to find Netscape to be a viable option," said Clay Ryder, vice president and chief analyst of Zona Research.

Although IE usage dipped slightly, the study reported that IE kept its dominant position within the corporate browser segment due to company policies. Sixty-three percent mandated employees use a specific browser. Of those specifying a browser, 54 percent said Microsoft's Internet Explorer was the standard while 46 percent designated Netscape's Navigator or Communicator.

"Corporate browser policies continue to greatly impact browser usage within the enterprise, and we see from this study that 84% of IE in use as the primary browser is policy driven," said Ryder.

Zona Research's browser study among enterprises during the past two years shows the changing market:

Date Navigator IE Other
October 1998 60% 40% 0%
July 1998 54% 45% 1%
September 1997 62% 36% 2%
January 1997 70% 28% 2%
August 1996 83% 8% 9%
April 1996 87% 4% 9%
February 1996 74% 3% 23%
January 1996 71% 2% 27%

For more information about the study, visit the research section of the Zona site.