Until the latest rankings, Microsoft was the most popular Web property in every month since comScore began tracking global numbers in January 2006. In the latest comScore figures, Google's lead is little more than a statistical hair. But given the company's momentum, Google is likely to widen the gap, at least in the short term.
The Mountain View search engine has outstripped Microsoft Relevant Products/Services on two fronts, becoming both the most visited Web site and the most valuable global brand.
The events are major milestones for Google, which has grown into a business juggernaut. Torrid growth and outsized profits have quickly propelled the company past many established blue clip giants while generating a host of complaints that it has become too powerful.
"These are really significant events," said Geoffrey Bowker, executive director of the Center for Science, Technology and Society at Santa Clara University. "At the moment, everything that Google is touching turns to gold."
For the first time, Google has edged ahead of Microsoft as the world's most visited Internet property. Online measurement firm comScore Networks found that Google had just over a million more unique users in March than its arch-rival.
Google had 528 million unique visitors in March, up 5 percent from the previous month, according to comScore. Microsoft had 527 million visitors during the same month, up 3.7 percent.
Popular in the United States, Google is even more of a powerhouse in many European countries.
In a statement, Google said: "Our goal has always been to provide the best online experience for our users. We build products based on user needs and input, which is part of what makes Google unique and results in a great online experience."
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Google, Microsoft, Site Traffic