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iOS Web traffic surpasses Mac OS X for first time? Maybe

Chitika, which analyzes Web traffic across its advertising network, says it found that iOS has overtaken Mac OS X in total Web market share for the first time.

Mac OS X and iOS market share, according to Chitika.
Mac OS X and iOS market share, according to Chitika
Chitika Insights

Apple's iOS share of Web traffic is higher than Mac OS X's, according to a study Chitika conducted across its online advertising network.

Chitika announced today that iOS has surpassed Mac OS X in total Web market share for the first time. The swap occurred this month, as iOS hit 8.15 percent, and Mac OS X slipped to 7.96 percent.

"To quantify this study, Chitika Insights analyzed several data sets composed of a series of US traffic taken from August 2011 to February 2012 out of the Chitika Ad Network (covering hundreds of millions of ad impressions)," the network said of its study. "The user agents of individual impressions were then aggregated to determine relative overall share of the different operating systems."

Although Chitika had a huge sample to base its study on, it's by no means definitive. The company only examined traffic across its advertising network of over 100,000 Web sites, leaving the millions of sites that don't use its service out of the calculation. A larger study across different advertising networks might reveal the same results, or might show something entirely different.

Still, its findings are notable. Over the past six months, iOS market share has grown by nearly 50 percent, according to Chitika. Mac OS X's market share has declined by about 25 percent.

"The mobile device industry is growing so fast, that it will likely become the predominant method for consumers to access and interact with the web in the near future," Chitika said in a statement. "This poses the questions: When will we see mobile traffic overtake traditional desktop traffic, and what does this mean for the computing industry?"

Unfortunately, Chitika didn't compare iOS and Mac OS X traffic with Android. Last month, the advertising network announced that in December, Android accounted for 51.6 percent of all mobile traffic across its network. Apple's iOS followed with 46.5 percent share. In November, iOS secured 51.7 percent of the market, followed by Android at 46.1 percent. Given that data, it's possible Android might have also topped iOS this month.