Jemal R. Brinson/NEWSCOM
The folks at Guinness World Records still need to verify the Firefox figure â€“ that could take days â€“ but the browserâ€™s creator, Mozilla, is proudly touting its â€śnew recordâ€ť for the most downloads in a 24-hour period.
Just to be clear, there is no record to beat. Guinness has never tracked this before. So when Mozilla first approached them, they set the bar at 5 million. With Firefox's download rate reaching 233 copies per second (or 1.5 gigabytes per second) by Tuesday morning, Firefox 3 blew past its goal.
While Guinness takes the official tally, one blogger is challenging the benchmark. â€śIâ€™m pretty impressed, I like it, and the downloads thing is good marketing,â€ť writes Ryan Stewart, who works for Adobe. â€śBut to put that in perspective, we get 8 million installs of the Flash Player ... on an average day.â€ť
Of course, Adobe's numbers have also not been vetted by Guinness, and they by no means take away Firefoxâ€™s impressive day. Firefox 2.0 only got 1.6 million downloads its first day â€“ a figure the new version surpassed in just five hours.
What will be more interesting to see now is if this burst of downloads affects Firefoxâ€™s standing against Internet Explorer. IE still dominates the field with 74 percent market share. But Firefox is catching up, growing from 14 to 18 percent over the past year. I assume that most people downloading Firefox 3 on Tuesday were simply replacing their older versions, but maybe Mozillaâ€™s big week will let Firefox continue to nip at Microsoftâ€™s heels.