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A review of Internet Explorer 9

The not so new Internet Explorer 9 paves the way for faster browsing, more room on the screen, and better privacy. With many improved features, IE 9 has the potential to succeed where its predecessor IE 8 failed before. Its main advantage is that it was extensively tested to users before officially releasing the final version to the public on March 14, 2011.

Advantages

  • Improved speed - Internet Explorer 9 is decidedly faster that its predecessor and its improved speed is a welcome change.
  • Better interface - The core of IE 9 is the improvement in its interface. Web page display is roomier since buttons and task icons are now in one row. Removing clutter on the screens and focusing on important tools are distinct advantages. Tabbing works great from toggling between pages being visited to a favourite list that can easily be pulled out. There’s even a notifications page to remind you if there's a need to bookmark a page or delete browsing history.
  • Upgraded JavaScript - In addition, Javascript performance of the browser is greatly improved making pages load faster without rewriting codes for texts and images.
  • OneBox feature - The combined search box and address functionality is a nifty tool which reduced further clutter on the page and makes it easy to search and locate a web address.
  • HTML 5 support - A major issue with its predecessor is the lack of HTML 5 support and this is not the case anymore for the IE 9. There are hardware accelerators to make sites load faster without having to re-code.
  • Privacy - Using privacy technologies called Tracking Protection, IE 9 is capable of blocking malicious codes and malware.
  • Pin-site feature - The ability to pin down sites with ease is a big plus by simply dragging the icon to the task bar.

Disadvantages

  • Supported on Windows 7 and Vista only - While Windows 7 users rave about the perfect integration of IE 9, the browser can only be installed on OS running on Windows 7 and Vista.
  • Longer set-up time - Users can now upgrade older browsers automatically with a Windows update, but there are specific installers for the 32 and 64-bit computers leading to a longer installation time.

The verdict

Internet Explorer 9 is definitely a step up from IE 8, but critics agree, more can be done to improve its functionality and performance. And, if you’re not upgrading to Windows 7 or don’t have Vista, then you are out of the loop. The question remains, are these improvements sufficient to sway users to switch to IE 9 or will its ranking remain on a dead end?

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