Windows Consumer Preview: The Fifth IE10 Platform Preview

With IE10 in Windows 8, we reimagined the browser. We designed and built IE10 to be the best way to experience the Web on Windows. Consumers can now enjoy more touch-friendly and beautiful, fast and fluid Web applications with the updated IE10 engine included in the Windows Consumer Preview. This fifth Platform Preview of IE10 delivers improved performance and support for more HTML5:

This video shows some of the touch-friendly HTML5 technologies in the fifth IE10 Platform Preview, included with the Windows Consumer Preview.
View this video on YouTube

You can read more about the improvements to the Metro style browsing experience on the Building Windows 8 blog. The remainder of this post discusses the underlying HTML5 engine.

Windows 8 includes one HTML5 browsing engine that powers both browsing experiences (the Metro style one and desktop one) as well as Metro style applications that use HTML5 and JavaScript. The common HTML5 engine provides consistently fast, safe, and powerful support for Web standards and the Web programming model, for both browser experiences as well as for Metro style applications.

Consumers experience this power with rich, beautiful visual effects that take full advantage of the underlying hardware safely. Some examples that you can try at the IE Test Drive site with the Consumer Preview include fast and fluid multi-touch support in Web pages and the latest database APIs, which enable you to take photos from a Web site offline. The Test Drive site demonstrates how much better the Web can be with rich visual effects, sophisticated page layouts, and the advances to the Web programming model. You can read the full list in the IE10 developer guide.

A Better Web Ahead

Working closely with the developer community, we see a much better Web ahead.

IE10 in the Metro style experience is plug-in free. Almost all phones and devices are already plug-in free and many sites already run plug-in free for them. To deliver the richest experience, and one experience that scales across different devices, we continue to recommend that developers detect when plug-ins are not available and rely on native browser patterns.

Similarly, we recommend that developers update their sites’ older, out of date libraries (like this one) that don’t work well with new browsers like IE10.

We also recommend that developers use feature, not browser, detection. Often, the compatibility problem reports we receive have more to do with sites detecting IE and sending it different content than they send other browsers than any particular issue in IE. You can see some examples of how IE makes up for certain sites by adjusting the information it sends to particular sites (e.g. sending an iPad identification token) based on the Compatibility View (CV) list in the post script to this blog entry.

Developers can find sample feature detection code patterns in several IE blog posts, including this one.

The quality and correctness of different browsers’ HTML5 engines continue to vary widely. We continue to contribute to the test suites under development at the HTML5 standards bodies to further the goal of interoperability and same markup. We’ve submitted 456 new tests to them that you can view at the IE Test Center as well. As different browsers improve their support of the same markup to produce the same results, we can all realize the promise of HTML5.

You can find a full list of new functionality available to developers in the IE10 developer guide here. Download the Windows 8 Consumer preview to try this update to IE10. We look forward to continued engagement with the developer community and your feedback on Connect.

―Dean Hachamovitch, Corporate Vice President, Internet Explorer