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Friday, September 17, 2010

Microsoft's New IE9 Promises Quicker Speeds

Andy Winter, Sky News Online


Microsoft has released the latest version of its web browser promising it will work at faster speeds as more people use video.

Aiming to be less obtrusive to users, Internet Explorer 9 pushes itself into the background, making the websites it displays more visible.

Internet Explorer has been the market leader for many years, but has been losing share to Mozilla's Firefox and Google's Chrome.

Microsoft hopes its new features will help reclaim that share.

In IE9, the rendering of graphics and text has shifted to the graphics card from the CPU, accelerating speed and visuals, allowing sites to look and perform more like applications that are installed directly on a PC.

As people watch more video and use sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, browser developers are making their latest versions quicker and better at handling graphics.

Microsoft is promising a faster, cleaner, more secure version of its browser - one that will support evolving web technologies, such HTML5, a standard for presenting content.

It is also more tightly integrated with the company's Bing search engine, which the company hopes will begin to eat away at the dominance of Google.

According to Peter O'Neill, an analyst at Forrester Research, IE9's close integration with Microsoft's Windows operating system, which runs on most of the world's PCs, allows IE9 to use a computer's hardware in a different way to rival browsers.

He said: "This is going to make the Windows platform more attractive and, Microsoft hopes, help stop people from leaking away to other browsers."