Chrome’s Actual Market Share May Be Slightly Less Than Expected

With Chrome 13, Google introduced few exciting features like “Instant Pages” and “Prerendering”. Chrome 17 brought prerendering to the omnibox. These features enable Chrome to start loading web pages in background and finally result into faster browsing experience. On the other hand, it also generates unviewed visits when a user does not visit the pre-rendered page.

It seems that prerendering has started affecting web traffic analyzers and browser usage share data. According to the NetMarketShare.com, “fake” traffic due to prerendering may account around 4% of Chrome’s visitors. The company has estimated this figure on the websites in its network, and this estimation may differ for general web. In a report, NetMarketShare.com has announced to exclude these unviewed visits from the data to calculate browser usage share.

Solution

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The Page Visibility API provides an easier way to detect visibility state of web pages. NetMarketShare.com will utilize this technology to detect if a user has actually visited the page.