Read more: ZDNet.comAfter a couple of weeks on tinkering with the newly released Internet Explorer (IE) 9, and a host of other Web browsers, I have to say that while 32-bit IE 9 is much better than any other version of IE to date, it’s still not my first pick for a Web browser. Here’s why.
1. Operating system incompatibilities
When it comes to desktop operating systems, IE 9 works only with Windows 7 and Vista. That’s it. XP users? You’re out of luck. There’s no IE 9 for XP. Yes, according to NetMarketShare, the majority of Windows users are still running XP, 55%, to 23% running Windows 7 and 11% with Vista, but there’s still no IE 9 for you.
Of course, Microsoft also doesn’t support IE 9 on Mac OS X or Linux either. Indeed, Dean Hachamovitch, the head of Microsoft’s IE’s engineering group boasted of it at the SXSW (South by Southwest Conferences and Festivals). Hachamovitch is reported as saying, “Other browsers dilute their engineering investments across systems. Because we focus exclusively on one, IE can make the most of the Windows experience and the hardware.”
Funny, Chrome, Firefox, and Safari all seem to manage it pretty well. And, even if Microsoft wants to ignore Mac OS X and Linux, why not at least a version for XP anyway?
The answer, of course, is that Microsoft wants to sell you Windows 7, even if you don’t need or want it.