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Apple's Safari challenged by rival mobile browsers

Safari still accounts for more than half of Web tracker Net Applications' mobile-browser traffic, but Android's stock browser and Opera Mini are gaining ground.

Net Applications

Apple's Safari is still by far the dominant mobile browser, though its competition is eating away at some of its popularity.

Safari grabbed 55.4 percent of all mobile-browser traffic captured by Web tracker Net Applications in February. That proved a hefty drop from January's 61 percent share and last July's 66 percent share.

At the same time, the stock Android browser, which is found on older Android devices, chewed up 22.8 percent of the mobile browser traffic last month. Though its numbers were higher last October and November, the Android browser has sliced off an increasingly larger share over the longer haul.

Opera Mini also staged a recovery last month with a 12.72 percent share, up from 9.84 percent in January and its highest number since March of last year. Chrome's mobile share fell slightly, to 1.96 percent in February from 2.02 percent in January. But its long-term trend shows continued growth.

The mobile version of Internet Explorer won a share of 1.58 percent last month, a steady rise over the past several months.

Safari is obviously in no danger of losing its dominance anytime soon. But its rivals are clearly eating into some of its action, especially as mobile browsing itself grows more popular.

Net Applications bases its data on more than 160 million visits to more than 40,000 Web sites each month.