Usability - Productivity - Business - The web - Singapore & Twins

Is Internet Explorer holding you back?

There is a paradoxon going on in corporate IT (probably more than one): On one hand developers whisper "Our standard is IE[6]" on the other hand managers buy iPhones, iPads, Android phones (which are all WebKit based) and demand that all applications should move to browser based access, being Intranet or the cloud. Development for browsers is painful compared to client environments (you need to know at least 4 totally unrelated - in terms of syntax - technologies: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, HTTP). HTML5 will address some of the pain (while you still have to learn the 4 technologies). Looking at the browser's HTML5 capabilites you only can conclude, that your mobile device will outshine your desktop browser by a large margin:

Summary of HTML5 support per browser

Calculation of support of currently displayed feature lists

Internet Explorer Firefox Safari Chrome Opera
Two versions back 6.0: 3% 3.0: 42% 3.2: 57% 3.0: 76% 10.1: 51%
Previous version 7.0: 10% 3.5: 70% 4.0: 78% 4.0: 81% 10.5: 71%
Current 8.0: 25% 3.6: 76% 5.0: 86% 5.0: 85% 10.6: 77%
Near Future (2010) 8.0: 25% 4.0: 90% 5.0: 86% 6.0: 89% 10.6: 77%
Future (2011 or later) 9.0: 58% 4.0: 90% 5.*: 88% 7.0: 90% 10.7: 78%
( Table found here). IBM made the decision to move to Firefox. Is it time for you to move too? A few places to check out on the new capabilities:

Posted by on 13 July 2010 | Comments (3) | categories: Software


  1. posted by Patrick Kwinten on Tuesday 13 July 2010 AD:
    There should be one standard for web development and this is webkit based clients.

    IE my ass. Been there, done that (did not liked it) what's next?

    It's just the arrogance of power that IT managers still claim IE as a standard. Or the fact that they are brontosaurus.

  2. posted by tom oneil on Tuesday 13 July 2010 AD:
    We're still on IE6. We don't move that fast here. My machine is going to be 8 years old in November.

    Managers buying iphone/android cellphones? If you have a tech department willing to support all of those technologies... I find it hard to believe they've locked you in to one browser.

  3. posted by Stephan H. Wissel on Wednesday 14 July 2010 AD:
    @Patrick: Choice is good. I wouldn't want a webkit mono culture. As long as there is competition progress happens. If webkit would be the only surviver innovation will come to the same standstill as happened when IE6 was the only surviver of the Browser War 1.0.

    @Tom: We are not locked into one browser. "Standard" in IBM here means: that will be on your machine when you get it delivered (and a lot of non-technical users like admin, sales, finance etc. only use what is given). And all apps *must* run on it. You are free to add other browsers (I have FF, Chrome, Chromium, Konqueror -- IE somewhere in a VM). Applications should work to web standards and developers are encouraged to support them all, but general help desk would entertain problems around the standard browser only. For the others there are internal communities where high grade experts who solve any exotic as it can be problem. You just don't get a helpdesk ticket id.