Included in today’s Windows 8 Consumer Preview release was an updated version of Microsoft’s upcoming web browser Internet Explorer 10. IE10 Platform Preview 5 is available both in the operating system’s Metro interface, and on the desktop version of Windows 8. Both versions share the same core engine that is optimized for HTML5 contents.
The Metro version is bare bones, as Microsoft has blocked the Internet browser from running browser plugins such as Adobe Flash or Java. The desktop version on the other hand supports plugins just like previous versions of the web browser did. Another difference is the tab-less design of the Metro Internet Explorer which can open only one web page at a time.
When you run the HTML5 Test you’ll notice that compatibility with the technology has been improved considerably in comparison to Microsoft’s current browser Internet Explorer 9. IE10 manages to score 314 and 6 bonus points in the test, while IE9 only 141 and 5 bonus points. Internet Explorer 10 still takes the back seat in comparison to other browsers, but the gap has been closed almost completely. The number one browser currently is Google Chrome 16 with a score 371 and 15 bonus points.
Microsoft has released new HTMl5 demonstrations at their IE Test Drive site to see how the browser performs and compares in these tests.
A plugin-free browser will run into issues on websites that use use plugin technologies. Microsoft recommends that these sites use detectors to replace proprietary technologies with technologies that do not require plugins.
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.
Microsoft plans to release the final version of Internet Explorer 10 with the release of the Windows 8 operating system later this year. The browser has been announced for Windows 8 and Windows 7, but no version of it has been released until now for the current Windows operating system. Webmasters and businesses can test their websites and services only if they install the developer or consumer preview version of Windows 8.
You can read Dean Hachamovitch’s update announcement at the official Internet Explorer Blog.