Rumor Mill: IE9 Final to Be Released This Month
Article by George Norman
On 08 Mar 2011
The latest version of Microsoft’s IE9 (Internet Explorer 9) web browser is IE9 RC (Release Candidate) which was rolled out to the public on the 10th of February. IE9 Beta may have been a big success, hence the more than 25 million downloads, and IE9 RC may be a big success, hence the 11 million downloads, but what regular users are waiting for is the final, stable version. Regular users don’t really like to deal with the hassles of Beta testing a product.

So one question comes up: when will the final, stable version of IE9 be rolled out to the public? We haven’t heard anything from Microsoft, but rumor on the web has it that IE9 will graduate out of RC this month. To put it in other words, rumor on the web has it that IE9 will go final this March.

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Download Squad for example cites “a source that’s intimately familiar with the situation” and says that IE9 Final will be released three days before St Patrick’s Day, on the 14th March at the SXSW conference. This rumor is backed up by the fact that the IE team announced it will be holding a party at SXSW and by the fact that a 14th of March release goes hand in hand with the six-week release cycle that Internet Explorer has followed.

Windows7News.com on the other hand says that the final version of IE9 will be released a week after St Patrick’s Day, on the 24th of March. This rumor is backed by a tweet sent by MSDN India, tweet that says: “Launch of Internet Explorer 9 on 24th March at Tech.Ed India 2011.”

At the start of the month, on the 1st of March, the Redmond-based software giant announced that the number of IE9 RC downloads went up and over the 11 million mark – previously Microsoft had announced that within 6 days of its release, IE9 RC had been downloaded more than 2 million times. On the 1st of the month Microsoft also said that IE9 Beta and IE9 RC downloads put together went over the 36 million mark (25 million IE9 Beta downloads and 11 million IE9 RC downloads).

No matter when the final version of IE9 will be released, one thing is for sure. It will come with the following new features:
  • A fresh new UI (user interface) that, as Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President for Internet Explorer, Dean Hachamovitch said, is meant to put the focus on the site, not the browser.
  • Pin websites to the Windows 7 taskbar.
  • The New Tab Page displays the sites you visit most often (like Opera's Speed Dial).
  • All notifications are displayed at the bottom of the page.
  • Tear-off tabs feature that allows you to snap pages side-by-side using Windows Aero Snap.
  • Tabs that are related are color coded.
  • Add-on Performance Advisor identifies add-ons that may be slowing down your browser.
  • New, faster JavaScript engine.
  • Support for HTML5.
  • Tracking Protection Lists – a do not track feature that works much like the “Do Not Call” telephone registry and enables users to control how their information is shared
  • ActiveX filtering – feature that allows the user to block all ActiveX content and then selectively activate it on a per-site basis.

If you would like to get IE9 RC, you can grab it from the Beauty of the Web site, which Microsoft set up to tout the browser’s capabilities, or you can get it in your native language here. If you woud like to wait for the final version, hopefully you won't have to wait long.




Tags: Microsoft, IE9, IE9 RC, Internet Explorer, Web Browser
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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