The first week of March brought interesting news from Russia. First, on the morning of March 2, 2011, avast! Free Antivirus surpassed the longtime-leader Adobe Acrobat Reader to become the most downloaded software on the largest Russian software downloading site Softportal.com. avast! Free Antivirus gets downloaded even more than popular applications like Skype or Firefox in Russia, and is the only security solution listed in the top 20 most-popular applications.
In the “antivirus” subcategory, avast! Free Antivirus is ahead of local Russian brands Kaspersky and Dr.Web – in 2nd place, with 5-times fewer downloads, and 3rd place, with 6-times fewer downloads, respectively.
The other big news from early March was the user-base growth. The Russian base grew to over 7 million active avast! users in February – a full 56% (!) increase over last year and dramatically faster growth compared to the overall market there (Gartner estimates the Russian market grew at 5.7% in 2010).
According to the same Gartner report, there were 13 million computers installed in homes and 24 million in companies in Russia in 2010. Unfortunately, the report doesn’t specify further the split of companies segmented into small and medium-sized businesses - where avast! is likely to be deployed - and the bigger companies, which would likely choose more traditional brands. Nevertheless, the 7-million-strong base of avast! users within the Russian market is a great achievement.
Russia has been a priority for AVAST for a long time. With the help of our avast! community in Russia (see Translators: avast.com/community), we localized avast! Free Antivirus into Russian in March 2004, and on April 21, 2004, it was released to the public. In retrospect, it seems an obvious direction, but in spring 2004 the decision toward Russia was still only 2 years since we had introduced our free antivirus as such, and it was still before we had even reached the 1st million users.
But of course what matters most is the product itself and the trust it has among users. We try to deliver the best possible free antivirus that is more than match for competitors’ paid-for products. Looking at the AV Comparatives tests or Virus Bulletin review, avast! Free Antivirus actually outperforms Kaspersky’s paid-for products. But without our community’s trust, word-of-mouth advertising, and support we would not achieve such growth.
So thank you all. Or better yet: Спасибо всем вам за доверие и поддержку ;)