CJ Column


Browser use differences in Japan, the US, China and Vietnam

This is a loosely translated and shortened English version of a Japanese article from the CJ Column.

The popularity of different internet browsers varies by country. In this article, we examine the share by country as of September 2017 according to StatCounter (newer data is available.)


■ Browser share in Japan (September 2017)

Although Internet Explorer (IE) had the largest market share in Japan a few years ago, Chrome now accounts for nearly 40% of the market. Safari comes in second with 16.2% of usage on iPhones and 3.09% of usage on iPads. It appears that many people use Safari because it comes installed on their Apple mobile devices. IE and Edge together account for about 20% of the market and are almost solely used on Windows-installed PCs. Samsung Internet, the standard browser on Android Galaxy series devices, has a 0.7% market share and Sleipnir, a browser made in Japan, ranks 9th at 0.43%.



■ Browsing device share in Japan (September 2017)

While Japanese mobile phone and tablet use has significantly increased in recent years, the chart shows that PCs still account for the lion’s share of browsing devices in Japan.

■ Browser share in the US (September 2017)

Chrome has a higher browser share in the US than in Japan. But the combined total for IE and Edge (around 10%) is about half that of Japan. Sleipnir doesn’t enter the picture at all, but in its place is UC Browser, a high-speed mobile browser from China that is mainly popular in China and India. 


■ Browser share in China (September 2017)

Chrome ranked first in China despite restrictions on Google services. Among the other top ranking browsers are some you may not recognize. UC Browser, for example, ranked ninth in the US but ranks third in China. QQ Browser is from Tencent, the maker of China's most popular instant messenger (QQ) that’s positioned like LINE in Japan. Sogou Explorer is bundled free with Sogou Pinyin, which enjoys about a 70% share among Chinese input method editors. Both browsers are rarely seen in Japan.


■ Browser share in Vietnam (September 2017)

As in the other countries, Chrome earns the highest ranking in Vietnam. However, Coc Coc comes in second over Safari. This browser developed by the Vietnamese company Coc Coc offers unique features that Vietnamese find convenient.


Browser popularity clearly varies by country as the bar graphs above show. When creating a website for markets abroad, you should test how it appears on the browsers that are popular in those markets. Otherwise, you run the risk of many users seeing something very different from what you expect. At Citrus Japan, we always test the websites we create on the browsers that are popular in targeted markets to make sure they look their best.





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