Is IE8 the Last Internet Explorer?

Dennis Faas's picture

Could this be the end of the storied relationship between Internet Explorer and Microsoft's Windows operating system? That may just be the case with recent rumors suggesting Microsoft may terminate the popular browser.

According to reports surfacing last night, Microsoft may make Internet Explorer 8 the last in a long line of dominant browsers. Some are clearly happy about the possibility of a new Microsoft browser, one built from the ground up with, ideally, constant consultation between the software company and users (not unlike the Windows 7 beta).

Montreal tech consultant Gerhard Mack is certainly enthused, calling Internet Explorer "a travesty," that "needs to be dropped off the web as soon as possible." (Source:

Despite these kinds of demands for a new and improved Microsoft browser, don't expect IE to completely fall off the face of the earth, or web for that matter. Too many business users and software makers rely on what has been for a very long time the industry standard.

Multiple browsers in Windows 7?

Earlier this month, Microsoft announced it would make turning off IE8 an option in Windows 7, and possibly several other long-time Windows programs like Media Player and Media Center.

That said, Opera wants Microsoft to try harder. The comparably small-time browser company wants the Redmond-based software giant to not only provide the option of switching off IE8, but actually include competing browsers when it ships Windows 7 later this year or early next. Opera believes that only this step will truly rectify years of Microsoft antitrust maneuvering and make the browser market competitive, and by extension, better. (Source:

Opera probably hasn't thought this one through, and admits the implementation part of the equation isn't up to them. Of course, such an idea could open a whole new can of worms, as small and big-time browser developers demand to have their own products included.

We'll see if Opera gets their wish (or something like it) as the release of Windows 7 nears.

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