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Why IE9 Will Never Be Number One


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Internet Explorer 9 will be officially available Monday, March 14. Microsoft has a dominant, but dwindling stake in the overall browser market, led by Internet Explorer 8. The reality, though, is that there is virtually no chance that Internet Explorer 9 will be as successful as IE8.

Internet Explorer 9 is a solid Web browser. It has been very successful and received much critical acclaim during its beta testing phase. Its hardware accelerated graphics yield blazing fast results, and the new features and functions in IE9 make the Web a more integrated part of the Windows PC experience.

The catch there, though, is that it is a part of the "Windows" PC experience. Internet Explorer has always had a slight handicap when it comes to browser market share. While browsers like Firefox and Chrome are available for Mac OS X and Linux systems as well as Windows, Internet Explorer is only compatible with Windows. So, right off the bat, there is 10 percent or so of the market that Microsoft will never get.

Even with one proverbial hand tied behind its back, Internet Explorer 8 has risen to be the number one browser, with Internet Explorer 6 in third place, followed by Internet Explorer 7 in fourth. Internet Explorer 8 alone commands 35 percent of the browser market.

So...why then would it not be reasonable to expect that Internet Explorer 9 will achieve similar success? Well, because with IE9 Microsoft has painted itself into an even smaller corner. While its predecessors are limited to the Windows operating system as a whole, IE9 is only compatible with Windows Vista (SP2 or greater), and Windows 7. Based on current OS market numbers, Windows XP still has more than half of the market, and the entire combined share of Windows 7 and Windows Vista PCs is less than the 35 percent share that IE8 has now.

Granted, none of the math is that simple. There isn't necessarily a direct one-to-one relationship between the OS market share numbers and the browser market. Plus, many of those who have embraced IE8 are arguably the ones most likely to stay on the cutting edge and make the switch to IE9. That means that IE8 would drop precipitously, and IE9 could capture a significant portion of the current IE8 market share.

That said, IE9 is starting out with a distinct disadvantage because by default it can only work with about a third of the PCs out there. I expect that IE9 will be successful, but its success will have to be filtered through a lens that includes only browser adoption on Windows Vista and Windows 7.

Maybe by the time we get to Internet Explorer 10 the world will have transitioned off of Windows XP and it will be a more even fight.

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Like that was ever going to happen... IE9 was determined to fail from the moment they started to develope it... Just good, that there is a much more secure and modern browser out there for IE fannyboys, IT block heads (those who know few of computers). Still wouldn't reccomend it... FF, Chrome and Opera will outgrow IE9 in a matter or months...

EDIT: Firefox FTW IMHO!

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firefox is very good but im tired of that plugin-container.exe part of firefox that only slows down my computer

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I think one part why IE is dominant is most users, I've seen/known for that matter, don't even bother replacing IE. Especially those who are less concerned/familiar about security/compatibility issues. As long as they're able to browse the internet, it's fine by them.

A boss of mine asked me to redo our old website made with Flash. After a couple of weeks he asked me for a status. I told him that I'm just having a little problem with IE8's rendering/compatibility with CSS. The website looks good with FF & Chrome but it looks a little off with IE8. He told me that I should ensure that it works with IE, implying that most people use IE. Well, what can I say? I couldn't tell him that IE8 sucks because of security and compatibility issues, and everyone should stay away from it because he only knows IE. <_<

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I think one part why IE is dominant is most users, I've seen/known for that matter, don't even bother replacing IE. Especially those who are less concerned/familiar about security/compatibility issues. As long as they're able to browse the internet, it's fine by them.

To a lot of people, IE IS "the internet". They call up, looking for tech support on why their computer is so slow, you ask, "OK, what browser are you using?" and you can just hear the blank stare as they go, "Brow-zer?". They're the same people who, when asked if their antivirus is up to date, reply, "I dunno, it came with the modem (read: computer)", "OK, how long have you had it?", "3 years". Or, if they had antivirus and the trial period ended, they went and bought a new one and installed it without removing the old one.

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RadioActive

Like that was ever going to happen... IE9 was determined to fail from the moment they started to develope it... Just good, that there is a much more secure and modern browser out there for IE fannyboys, IT block heads (those who know few of computers). Still wouldn't reccomend it... FF, Chrome and Opera will outgrow IE9 in a matter or months...

EDIT: Firefox FTW IMHO!

Spoken like a true fanboy! meh.

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....Go IE! ^_^

I don't care for firefox at the moment. Between their employee's feeling like they can trashtalk against everything (like flash, and other browsers) and between the fact that it takes so long to open firefox for the very first time after a reboot. Yeah I know their is addons for it, but there shouldn't have to be. I could also complain about how they keep pushing their product date back but to be honest, all the beta's have been stable for me, it's good they care about releasing products error free, and I still was happy when Beta 9 or 10 came out and enhanced performance and faster loading times. I use Chrome though but I really hope IE does amazing on this browser war. I am all for competition.

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