Working together for standards The Web Standards Project

IE9 looks really promising

By Aaron Gustafson | June 28th, 2010 | Filed in Browsers, CSS, DOM, HTML/XHTML, Microsoft

The IE9 “developer previews” continue to impress. HTML5, CSS3, & speed improvements FTW!

Skip to comment form

When the IE team announced their work on IE9 earlier this year, they promised three major improvements:

  1. HTML5
  2. CSS3
  3. speed

Now three “developer previews” in, by all accounts they’re living up to that promise: HTML5 support is increasing rapidly (including support for canvas; as PPK just confirmed, their CSS3 support is nearly complete; and several benchmark tests put them right up there with Chrome in terms of speed.

In playing around with the browser, I’ve been really impressed so far. To me, IE9 really puts the oft-maligned browser on par with the remainder of the browser landscape and even gives them the edge in certain cases. My hat’s off to the IE team, this is great work. I’m excited to see what happens as it continues to develop.

You can download the IE9 preview and check out some of the demos at, but keep in mind that you’ll need Vista or Windows 7 to run it.

Your Replies

#1 On June 28th, 2010 10:28 am Bob Holness replied:

I agree – it looks really promising for IE9. An amazing effort from the team.

But IE9? I’m still stuck developing for IE6. I’d like to see more support for corporations and governments to upgrade (the only people getting hurt now are Microsoft).

I’d also like to know what kind of fixes and updates will be seamlessly pushed out to IE9, like Chrome, Safari and Firefox. Will they start ‘patching’ for rendering bugs? No matter how rigorous your tests, bugs get through. For new features? If not, other browsers will continuously catch up and overtake during IE’s long release cycle.

IE9 looks exciting, but will it be exciting tomorrow, or in 2015?

#2 On June 28th, 2010 2:06 pm Steve replied:

Hope for IE – I’ll believe it when i see it….but seriously, I’ll be happy once they send out a update pill for 6-8 for everyone…

#3 On June 29th, 2010 1:08 am Alasdair King replied:

I was quietly hoping they wouldn’t support CANVAS: the thought of webpages that suddenly aren’t nice rendered marked-up text but products of procedural drawing using an API is going to be an accessibility nightmare. One of the big problems for screenreader users is finding stuff on a page: when the order of content no longer even follows the code and can change dynamically this will get much harder. Still, can’t stop progress, and the richer interfaces will give you more ways to support people with other disabilities and illiteracy.

#4 On June 29th, 2010 12:04 pm Sarah Jane replied:

I’ve been using firefox a lot and seem to keep running into problems with it. Prior to that I was using IE, but it was a magnet for viruses. Most of my friends have switched over to Chrome now, but do you think it is worthwhile to go back to IE?

#5 On June 29th, 2010 2:54 pm Tom replied:

These are really great news. Especially the CSS3 support is a long desired feature. Thanks for the IE9 preview link. I´ll check it out. Is a IE9 release date known at present?

#6 On June 30th, 2010 9:28 am Webstandard-Blog replied:

The IE team did a really good job Aaron. This third platform preview (the first beta is hopefully coming soon) is fast and “knows” CSS3 of which I haven’t dared to dream. This IE version is hopefully “the end” of IE6!

#7 On June 30th, 2010 5:45 pm Steve (independent courier and wannabe web entrepreneur) replied:

That’s excellent news, I’d like to use a MS product instead of being forced to use the feature rich Mozilla as it’s simply better and more stable than every IE previously. I tried Asteroid Belt and Mr Potatoe Gun, brilliant. Hurry up and roll it out MS, you have many potential browser customers who’d love to return to you.


#8 On July 2nd, 2010 2:39 am Rudolph replied:

There is no point in them releasing IE9 unless they allow it to easily update computers with IE6. Preferably without the WGA headache. Most users do not want to budge into newer operating systems because they don’t want to pay to be treated like criminals.

And there is no point in IE9 until it can replace IE6 everywhere. Until then, there is no way I’m going to stop advocating Opera, Chrome and Firefox.

#9 On July 5th, 2010 9:38 pm Sheds replied:

It’ll be great once they finally release the final version.

Hopefully they’ll secretly be aiming above and beyond the other current browsers otherwise they are just going to be playing catch up again.

Having said as long as they can match what they’ve announced it’s certainly looking like the best browser option at the moment IMO.

#10 On July 6th, 2010 12:44 pm Denounce IE replied:

[...] and friends agree with you. Check out this link praising IE9 from the Web Standards Project:…all-promising/ And, in all fairness, lets not forget that the IE team *invented* XMLHttpRequest and pioneered [...]

#11 On July 8th, 2010 4:27 pm Marco Sanchez replied:

I`m really excited. Hope IE9 will live up to expecations :)

#12 On July 16th, 2010 2:13 am Gutschein replied:

Thank you very much for the facts and preview link. Any informations about an release date? 2010 or 2011?

I hope IE9 will support CSS3 and sometimes all browsers provide the same result. Its still complicated to get the same look in different browsers with only one standard css.

Best regards from germany.

#13 On July 18th, 2010 5:07 am Gutscheine replied:

I already checked the IE9 preview and it seems they have done their homework.

#14 On July 21st, 2010 5:06 pm admntk replied:

I’ve been using firefox a lot and seem to keep running into problems with it. Prior to that I was using IE, but it was a magnet for viruses. Most of my friends have switched over to Chrome now, but do you think it is worthwhile to go back to IE?

#15 On July 22nd, 2010 11:56 am Julio Bitencourt replied:

Really nice. But for me, this only makes sense if Microsoft to force upgrade.

#16 On July 23rd, 2010 5:02 am qbaty replied:

COOL, i really expect that will come soon,well done,IE9

#17 On July 25th, 2010 12:54 am Ramon replied:

I am praying that with IE I don’t encounter the same issues as IE8 (which reminds me of Vista).

#18 On August 4th, 2010 3:01 pm Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) Platform Preview 4 Build Download Now | CodenameWindows replied:

[...] IE9, we have worked much more closely with the developer community. Developers have had an earlier (and more frequently updated) look at the platform. With that early engagement, developer feedback [...]

#19 On August 4th, 2010 4:03 pm IE9 Train Reaches Platform Preview 4 | Computer News, Information, and Articles replied:

[...] Developers and partners have been excited to experience the new IE9 web development and design capabilities, including fully hardware accelerating all graphics and text through Windows, our new Chakra JavaScript engine, as well as our support for modern standards like HTML5, CSS3, SVG 1.1 and DOM. We’ve received more than 1,300 pieces of feedback from developers and made many changes as a result. [...]

#20 On August 8th, 2010 1:57 am HTML5, Modernized: Fourth IE9 Platform Preview Available for Developers - Information Technology Weblog - IT Talks replied:

[...] worked much more c&#108&#111&#115ely with the developer community. Developers have &#104&#97&#100 an earlier (and more frequently updated) look at &#116&#104&#101 platform. With that early engagement, [...]

#21 On August 8th, 2010 5:45 pm Frank Deitert replied:

I think it is time for a new IE, because Firefox is always better.
IE9 has html5, CSS3 and quick Javascript.
Microsoft has tested 7000 websites to see what are the most important things what a browser needs.
I hope that IE9 will be a new standard.

Best regards from germany.

#22 On August 16th, 2010 6:52 am Sarah replied:

IE9 started from the premise that the modern web will deliver HTML5 experiences that feel more like native applications than sites. Building on hardware-accelerated SVG, canvas, video, audio, and text, developers will use the power of the whole PC to achieve great performance. On the modern web, developers will use the same markup across different HTML5 browsers.

#23 On August 16th, 2010 11:59 am DavidJCobb replied:

Useless, useless, useless.

The number of people who won’t — or CAN’T — upgrade to Vista or Windows 7 is still shockingly high. I myself am part of that group. Unless Microsoft changes their mind and makes IE9 compatible with Windows XP — and I very highly doubt they will do so — IE9 will change almost nothing, because a very large number of people will be stuck using — and coding for — older versions.

Worse yet is the fact that many developers can’t test their sites in IE9 simply because they can’t run it. Considering Microsoft’s dreadful history of crashes and security issues (both often being caused by the most appallingly stupid of mistakes), this is a very serious problem.

#24 On August 20th, 2010 1:26 am Oldtimer replied:

the IE 8 was disatar i hope the IE 9 is much better.

#25 On August 23rd, 2010 6:06 am Windows 7 Insider » Blog Archive » HTML5, Modernized: Fourth IE9 Platform Preview Available for Developers replied:

[...] IE9, we have worked much more closely with the developer community. Developers have had an earlier (and more frequently updated) look at the platform. With that early engagement, developer feedback [...]

#26 On August 25th, 2010 4:19 am Daniel Backer replied:

IE9 is going to be awesome, this platform preview is just the very beginning.

#27 On August 27th, 2010 3:01 am Gutschein replied:

Very nice, I’m using firefox, but this could be the return of IE.

#28 On August 27th, 2010 8:40 am عشقان replied:

Looking good all around. I’m glad to hear them pining for HTML5 the same way Web developers are.

#29 On August 27th, 2010 2:39 pm Erfahrungen replied:

It really looks as it will be the first IE release where Microsoft will really support internet standards. ;-)

I will try some CSS testings with the new preview versions. I am excited about the results.

#30 On August 30th, 2010 2:31 pm Nick replied:

I had no idea they were offering a beta for IE9. Thanks!

#31 On September 9th, 2010 10:41 am JoelMMCC replied:

To Rudolph: As I understand it, IE6 is the last version that can run on Windows 2000 and earlier (including all non-HAL Windows OSes, from 3.0x through ME). IE7 and up require at least Windows XP.

Windows 2000 and earlier are past End-of-Life, and by its name Windows 2000 is a decade old (a geological epoch, if not era, in computer technology terms). That said, its Service Pack 4 version was one of the best, most stable versions of Windows ever released up until then and for some time thereafter. Windows 98 Second Edition was likewise the best of the non-HAL Windows.

Remember than Windows XP got a well-deserved bad rap until Service Pack 2 came out (about as bad as Vista had even after its Service Packs), and many non-techies think that that still applies. There are thus quite a few people still using these older OSes (and as a result being a serious danger to us all, as their computers are way too easily zombified if they hook up to the Internet). They simply cannot upgrade to IE7, let alone IE9, without also upgrading their OS and in many cases buying a whole new computer.

And no, making a version of IE9 that can work on those older OSes is out of the question. There are core capabilities of the newer OSes that IE 7 and up absolutely require in order to work, which are not present on nor addable to the older OSes.

Windows 7 is a wonderful OS (especially for being a pre-SP), but too many got burned with previous pre-SP versions of Windows, and are likely waiting for at least Service Pack 1 before upgrading, perhaps even from Windows 2000 (or even NT4 SP6 in some cases!).

On another subject: I heard a rumor that IE9 will not be using the Trident layout engine at all, but that it’s a whole new engine even more secure than OP. Is this true, or are they saving that for IE10 or some future product?

#32 On September 23rd, 2010 8:42 am Dumsnål replied:

I’m Looking forward to try IE9.

From the facts about IE9 it looks really interesting that it supports HTML5 and x.264 videos.

Return to top

Post a Reply

Comments are closed.

All of the entries posted in WaSP Buzz express the opinions of their individual authors. They do not necessarily reflect the plans or positions of the Web Standards Project as a group.

This site is valid XHTML 1.0 Strict, CSS | Get Buzz via RSS or Atom | Colophon | Legal