Microsoft is back again in the browser war with it’s all new Internet Explorer 9 and is a huge improvement compared to it’s earlier version IE8 and it already seems to have become a hit among users just because two days after the release of Internet Explorer 9 Beta, has been downloaded over 2 million times by users across the globe.
Faster and Smoother
IE9 is undoubtedly a huge improvement over IE8, IE9 has switched the Trident rendering engine from running on the now-elderly GDI to hardware-accelerated DirectX and thus is much faster and also DirectX rendering makes animation and graphics move far faster and much more smoothly, plus text is much smoother and easier to read.Apart from others some of the very interesting features of IE9 include Pinned sites, One box and new Tab functionality.
IE9 still suffers from drawbacks including long installation times and that the browser scored only 95/100 in Acid3 scores, when asked about the same Moorthy told
One of the fundamental tenets of IE9 is to be amongst the most standards compliant browsers and we are fully committed and actively encouraging the notion of “same markup”, wherein HTML & CSS renders in the same way across browsers. Towards this, we have contributed over 2000 tests to the W3C standards committee to help browser makers verify that their implementation of these standards can be tested, verified to be as intended.
With regard to IE9’ ACID3 scores, the remaining 5 points involve two particular technologies (SVG Fonts and SMIL animation of SVG) both of which are in transition. The following excerpt from the IE blog follows:
Support for SVG Fonts in the web development and font communities has been declining for some time. There’s already been discussion without objection of dropping SVG fonts from the Acid3 test. The community has put forth a proposal in the SVG Working Group to give SVG Fonts optional status.
Instead, developers can use the Web Open Font Format (WOFF, supported in IE9 Platform Preview 3 as well as other browsers) for both HTML and SVG content. It works well in conjunction with the CSS3 Fonts module and has broad support from leading font vendors (e.g. here, “a majority of font makers have already settled on WOFF or services like Typekit as their format of choice”). WOFF fonts are a better long-term solution for many reasons discussed previously.
Not supported on Windows XP
IE9 is not supported on WinXP despite large part of Microsoft’s Enterprise customers are on XP and is apparently not a strategic decision to discontinue XP but just because IE9 leverages GPU
IE9 relies on the power of the underlying GPU to dramatically bolster rendition of all text & graphics and only modern operating systems such as Windows Vista & Windows 7 leverage the enormous power of the GPU in addition to the CPU. Windows XP is an Operating System released in 2001 and since then there have been massive improvement in PC hardware, such as the inclusion of GPU on all machines (either on board or as an add-on card), which are not leveraged in Windows XP. In creating IE9 we have provided a platform that will take the web to the next level in creating new, richer user experiences, which represent the “Beauty of the Web”. Said moorthy regarding the same
Will Microsoft win the browser war ?
Though not sure if Microsoft can win the browser war with IE9, it is sure to grab a good part of market share from it’s contenders not only because of it’s features but also because of it’s happy partners
“Our association with Microsoft goes way back when IE 4.0 was launched with DHTML capabilities all the way to IE8 last year. We are happy taking it to a new level by leveraging features in IE9 for our social music streaming product –SongBuzz. SongBuzz now uses HTML5 capabilities which come with IE9 such as audio tagging, local storage and the ability to integrate with Windows 7, hence delivering a differentiated social music experience. What we’ve experienced while building Songbuzz for IE9 – it truly redefined browsing!” said Sumit Rajwade, Vice President – Technology, Rediff.com talking to WATblog .