Is IE8 A Rising Star, Or Just Maintaining Altitude?
In Microsoft terms, Internet Explorer is on a fast track. It's been just over two years since IE7 was released, and IE8 is already making its debut. In contrast, it took more than five years for IE6 to meander its way up to IE7. In the meantime, IE's market share has dropped from 95% to 67%. Will IE8 change that trend?
The five-year development hiatus between IE6 and IE7 was a disaster for Microsoft. The company's near-perfect lock on the browser market in 2001 deteriorated as Mozilla Firefox steadily improved. Strange inconsistencies with IE6 caused Web developers serious headaches, but Firefox showed that Web standards could be properly implemented. While IE's browser add-ons mostly consisted of spyware toolbars and security exploits, Firefox browser add-ons were tools that users and Web developers actually wanted. And it's only gotten worse for Microsoft lately; now IE has lots of competition in the browser space including Safari, Chrome, and Opera.
Over the past decade, companies have built intranet applications that depend on the quirks of IE6, making it hard for them to escape even to IE7. Since IE8 diverges even further from those quirks, it won't get easier for those intranet applications to work properly. Any improvement that is not backward compatible with existing software often results in companies staying put with the old version rather than fixing their software. Budget cutbacks in an economic downturn make that decision easier.
IE8 is definitely a better browser than IE7, and it continues to make refinements, but what does that mean for IE market share? Companies that haven't yet left IE6 because of compatibility concerns can't move to IE8 for the same reasons that made them skip IE7. Users of other browsers, particularly Firefox, probably won't move back to IE8 because they are comfortable with their user interfaces and a wide variety of useful add-ons. IE can't compete in that area.
That leaves IE8 with a small market opportunity. Its best chance of gaining users is to take advantage of Windows 7, which puts even more pressure on Microsoft's new OS to be a success.
Have you tried Internet Explorer 8 yet? Feel free to add your thoughts in the comment section.
John Jantsch Of Duct Tape Marketing: How To Focus Your Marketing
Businesses need to stay competitive and relevant in order to survive this recession. But how do they get noticed among all the other companies? Duct Tape Marketing's John Jantsch explains what type of marketing companies should focus on and how to harness social networking.
Are new data loss prevention (DLP) systems the best way to
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2008 InformationWeek Strategic Security Survey
This year, it's all about managing risk. That's the overall finding of our 2008 InformationWeek Strategic Security Study, which quizzed nearly 2,000 IT professionals about their plans and priorities for securing their companies' assets. strategicsecurity.techweb.com/
Virtualization At The Desktop?
Examine how more than 250 companies plan to adopt server virtualization technology in this recent InformationWeek Research report, Server Virtualization.
The BI Explosion
Examine the business intelligence strategies of 500 companies, including deployment drivers and challenges, spending plans, and vendor selection, in this recent InformationWeek Research report.
Five Steps To A Well-Tuned Cloud
Many early adopters of cloud computing are poorly equipped to monitor and manage the performance of their cloud applications. In a just-published InformationWeek article, author Michael Healey outlines five steps users can take to change that.
Obama's Latest March Madness Pick: Health IT Czar
Though the Obama administration still has lots of key positions to fill--including naming a federal chief technology officer-- one critical appointment was made last week that will help fill in many of the important details related to Obama's nearly $20 billion health IT stimulus program.
Next-Gen iPhone To Have Faster Wireless Internet, Chew Your Food For You
Reports about a future version of the iPhone are starting to ramp up, even though Apple itself has not even hinted that new hardware will be announced any time soon. The latest scuttlebutt says that the next version of the iPhone will have "significantly faster" wireless Internet, video capture and more.
You're probably just as fed up as I am with hearing about Linux-powered netbooks that'll be veritable Windows-killers. Well, there's more of them on the way. And as it turns out, they may well turn out to be Windows-killers in at least one respect: Windows won't run on them, period.
YouTube Hosts Amateur Slam Dunking Contest
Google's YouTube unit is getting into the spirit of the NCAA tournament. It is having its very own slam dunk contest. Anyone can shoot themselves pulling an air Jordan and then upload their video to YouTube, where it will be judged by NBA pros.
Carriers On Dell Smartphone: No Thanks, Too Dull
Differentiation in today's smartphone market matters. In that regard, Dell has learned a painful lesson: it ain't got not design chops. According to a Kaufman Bros. analyst, Dell shopped a smartphone to the wireless network operators and was told it was too "Dell-like." Dude, ouch.
Podcast: Sybase, SAP Talk Smartphone Apps
I've been tardy in posting this five-minute podcast, where Sybase chief marketing officer Raj Nathan and SAP vice president Vinay Iyer delve into their joint deal to SAP's smartphone apps. (Sybase is providing the middleware.) But you should listen, because the "smartphone is the computer" is a meme that's rapidly gaining traction from deals like this.
Mobile Roundup, The Non-iPhone Edition
Of course, the mobile news this week was dominated by iPhone, iPhone, iPhone, but there was some really cool smartphone news that you may not have caught. This week I'll dive into an amazing-looking new BlackBerry, one of my favorite Nokia smartphones, and a Samsung device that pretty much blows the iPhone out of the water.
Forrester Consulting: Unified Communications Delivers Global Benefits This Forrester Consulting study shows how Unified Communications (UC) makes it simpler to contact others over any device in any location, enhancing business agility, cutting costs, and boosting employee productivity. Forrester finds that UC is already delivering major savings for organizations around the world in retail banking, manufacturing and education. Download the full report for free.
Software as a Service Research Report No longer a niche software delivery model, software as a service (SaaS) can help small and midsize companies get access to enteprise-class software functionality without having to commit enterprise-level capital resources. Download the full report for free.
The Internet & The Developing World The evolution of the Internet has been full of surprises - surprises that have sometimes resulted in radical changes in the commercial landscape, such as the arrival of Amazon, eBay, Google, YouTube, and Skype. Could one of the next big surprises turn out to be linked to developing countries? Read the full report for free from InternetEvolution.com
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