Microsoft recently announced, and made fully available, the Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate. IE9 has recently come out of Beta testing, and Microsoft claims it has net a total of 25 million downloads.
Microsoft’s goal with the latest release of Internet Explorer is to simplify, and speed up web browsing experience with increased support for more modern web standards. IE9 includes native support for HTML5, CSS3, Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), and several other standards.
Internet Explorer 9 features integrated tracking protection and security protocols which include a fully featured advertisement blocking procedure with up to date and fully customizable lists. IE9 also features HTML5 location services content which, like a cell phone, locates geographically relevant results and displays them on a map, new icon pinning which creates a shortcut directly to your favorite sites available on the task bar, a fully combined search and an address bar rolled into one and extended page tabs. In addition, Internet Explorer 9 now displays all relevant notifications on the bottom of the screen including downloads and system information.
In a more interesting inclusion, Microsoft claims that Internet Explorer 9 also includes full hardware acceleration support by default for all text, graphic and video content which will subsequently increase both loading and browsing speeds. This feature is not available in either the Firefox 4.0 or Chrome 8.0 latest builds.
Microsoft included support in the IE9 Beta for most of the aforementioned features but has continuously improved them through updates and patches, and now they are close to final form in the Release Candidate.
It will be interesting to see, over time, which browser reigns supreme although in the past Internet Explorer certainly dominated due to availability. It was a great browser and had its advantages but ended up being used most simply because it was readily accessible on all Microsoft OS machines. Since that time many alternate browsers have been released, namely the two most important competitors being Mozilla’s Firefox and Google’s Chrome.
Firefox was the choice for most users due to its increased speed and large collection of side applications and plugins. As many users began to rely more heavily on integrated browser plugins they shied away from Internet Explorer. Google Chrome marked the end of most casual IE use as it offered incredible speed and enhanced simplicity.
Now with IE9 Microsoft aims to re-establish its large user base claiming the new browser supports a faster speed than both Firefox and Chrome combined. This is a case where time most certainly will tell…
The Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate can be downloaded now by visiting the official Microsoft website and will automatically update the browser to the latest version.
We have created a forum thread to open a discussion on the latest release of Internet Explorer 9. Please join us and share your thoughts and opinions on the latest browser update. Do you prefer another browser over IE, and why? Are you going to test out the release candidate? Come join the discussion here!