Firefox's growth in the web browser market slowed in July, after climbing in June following the release of Firefox 3.0, according to web metrics firm Net Applications.

Net Applications said Mozilla's browser accounted for 19.2 percent of the market in July, 0.2 percent up on the previous month. June's release of Firefox 3.0 had helped the browser grow its share by 0.6 percent in June.

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"I thought Firefox would hit 20% by July," said Vince Vizzaccaro, Net Applications' executive vice president of marketing. "Now it looks like that could be still be another couple of months off."

Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE), however, accounted for 73 percent of the browser market in July - the same as in June, while Apple's Safari fell by 0.2 percent. Net Applications said Apple's decrease was the biggest since Safari lost 0.3 percentage points in June 2007.