Microsoft: Windows Market Share is in Free Fall

Ad network Chitika has released a study that shows some sobering results for Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows. From reviewing traffic across its network from August 2011 to February 2012, Chitika found that Windows market share as a web browser fell nearly 10 percent. The study did have a large sample size, but was limited in the fact that it only analyzed results on the Chitika network. TechCrunch reports for the data to be validated, another study across multiple ad networks would be necessary.

Chitika speculates that the decline in traffic on the Windows web browser is likely due to increased traffic on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. In other words, web surfing on mobile devices is eating taking away from traditional PC-based browsing.

TechCrunch points out that decreased PC production due to component shortages resulting from flooding in Thailand could also be a contributing factor to the drop in Windows browsing.

TechCrunch’s Sarah Perez says that Chitika’s study continues to confirm what other studies have hinted at: we are approaching the end of the PC era. Perez cites a study by Canalys earlier this month which, “… reported two major shifts in computing trends: one, that smartphone shipments outpaced PCs for the first time ever, and two, that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has become the world’s largest PC maker, assuming iPads are counted as PCs.” The Chitika study also hints at the importance of Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 and Windows 7 in tablets to remain a dominant web browser.