Projections that are sure to be disturbing Microsoft show the powerhouse’s staple browser—Internet Explorer—will lose its longstanding spot as the world’s majority-used browser by this time next year. Computer World‘s Gregg Keizer opens his article about the topic with the following:

Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) will lose its place as the majority browser next summer, according to statistics published today by Web metrics company Net Applications.

If the pace of IE’s decline over the last 12 months continues, IE will drop under the 50% mark in June 2012.

Other issues with IE9 (such as what versions of Microsoft operating systems it can run on) bring about even more concern later in the same article:

IE9 runs on Windows 7 and Vista, but does not work on Windows XP, the decade-old operating system that still powers more of the world’s PCs than any other OS.

Microsoft seems to struggle bringing each of its products to new stages of development and penetration, and—perhaps even more troubling—can’t seem to achieve this growth at the same time across products.

As an example, we’ll dream… Wouldn’t it be nice if Microsoft were able to develop an operating system that responded to the major concerns of its predecessor, while simultaneously releasing an internet browser that prevails over its predecessor’s shortcomings?

Instead, PC users are stuck accepting that Windows still-most-used OS (XP) is one that’s been twice ‘succeeded’ (whether you call Vista or Windows 7 successes is up to you). And, during the same time, PC users have seen three new iterations of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, yet IE9 is showing painfully slow adoption rates and still doesn’t live up to the robust functionality provided by other browsers.

It seems Microsoft IE is destined to move not just under majority use by next year, but likely remain one of the least adopted IE versions to date, unless some significant strides are taken by Microsoft in the next year. As noted by Scott Gilbertson of Wired some time ago, “the web shows no signs of slowing down to accommodate IE.” The real question is… does Microsoft have the energy left to come back in this browser race?