I've noticed for some time that some UK users say "different to" instead of "different from," or "different than" which always sounded odd (since to implies moving together rather than moving apart), but eh, grammar and usage in English isn't always logical.

But more recently, I've noticed some US users saying "different to" instead of "different from" in television and books in dialog and sometimes even narrative, even modern novels set back in the 1950s. According to what I looked up, US users generally use "different than" as an alternative to "different from," and this is what I've noticed in face-to-face conversations in the Western US.

So is "different to" an older expression that is dying out in the US, or is it gradually becoming more common here? Is it a regional expression? How common is it in the UK also, and how far back does this usage go back in the UK? An English friend in his 60s says "different to" bothers him, and he was taught it's improper, but I see a lot of UK users using the expression on writing forums, including AW. And if he was taught it was improper back in his school days, it implies "different to" was at least colloquial or regional usage back in the 40s and 50s in the UK.

Are we seeing an evolution in English on both sides of the pond with reference to this expression (abandonment of "different than" and "different from")? It's not a big deal, but it's something I'm curious about, and it may have relevance when writing dialog between characters from different regions of the US, UK, and other English-speaking countries.