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8/16/2014
09:06 AM
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IE's Bad Reputation: Will Microsoft Rebrand?

Internet Explorer hasn't been able to shake its reputation as a buggy browser because users refuse to upgrade to cleaner versions -- despite their complaints. Microsoft says rebranding is on the table.

Internet Explorer pinata (image: Javier Aroche/Flickr).
Internet Explorer pinata (image: Javier Aroche/Flickr).

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Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
8/19/2014 | 1:42:21 PM
Re: IE "the afterthought"
Fair point. Many people have had to use IE because it gets along better with some corporate-mandated program or another. I know I have.
cafzali
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cafzali,
User Rank: Moderator
8/19/2014 | 12:13:48 PM
Re: IE "the afterthought"
@Mark Not to mention the fact that widespread adoption of Microsoft products like SharePoint often force people to go to IE, at least temporarily. If there's one thing I hate, it's being forced to use a substandard browser just because they've adopted another service or technology from the same company. 
Mark532010
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Mark532010,
User Rank: Strategist
8/19/2014 | 11:32:53 AM
Re: IE "the afterthought"
IE is a total nightmare and changing its name is not going to help. On XP I can't move past IE8. On Windows 7, I am at IE11 which has less compatibility than 10 did - we actually had to change to Chrome because our primary SIS website worked great in IE10 with compatibility mode but not in IE11.

Plus half of the sites that do work, work slowly. Microsoft blames the website authors.. (paraphrasing) "if they would just write HTML5-only code our browser would be really fast"  well, gee, perhaps you should work on a browser that runs fast in the real world, not some future perfect world. 

I hate that IE makes everything so difficult. It seems I am always having to change to to compatibility mode manually (which is not a one-click operation - the torn-paper icon was removed in IE11). I don't seem to ever hit sites that are on their automatic list and with all the status info now gone I can't even easily tell if I am on comaptibility mode or not.

The status bar now no longer shows any status except scaling. Did you know with IE11 you have to right-click on the page and select properties just to find out what zone you are in?

We are switching to Chrome simply because it works in most situations automatically - not all situations though.. I really do wish website authors would get their stuff together. My Firewall website requires both IE and Chrome running simultaneously, because different portions of it only work in one but not the other.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
8/18/2014 | 7:37:15 PM
there's your problem
>IE 11 includes an Enterprise Mode that allows businesses to use a sandboxed environment to safely run old line-of-business apps built for IE 8.

Too bad you can't sandbox IT people who refuse to modernize line-of-business apps.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
8/18/2014 | 2:29:11 PM
Re: IE's buggy reputation was earned
Chrome is on version 36.

Firefox is on version 31.

 

I'm surprised there are so few version of IE.

 
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
8/18/2014 | 2:26:12 PM
IE and Microsoft's Mistake
Microsoft's biggest mistake was not allowing multiple versions of IE to be installed at the same time.  I know they made a lot of claims that it was part of the OS but now that it's Monday morning, this play was a huge mistake.

If XP customers had been able to keep their old, incompatible, bug-ridden and security nightmare version of IE AND install the latest and greatest version of IE, web-developers would have a lot more pleasant feelings toward Microsoft and IE.
TerryB
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TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
8/18/2014 | 1:57:20 PM
Not that easy
Many of you are way oversimplifying this issue for business. If you are consumer, then yeah, use whatever browser blows your dress up.

At our company, it is an application hell for browsers. I'm writing Ext JS apps which don't work worth a darn unless you get to IE 9. I test them in Chrome also because debugger is superior. One of my apps is a dashboard which runs in a continuous loop, making server calls every 30 seconds. No version of IE will work for more than a couple hours before IE crashes. I actually had to put Chrome on an Win 7 embedded thin client, which is not a desirable thing to do. But Chrome will run it for a day at least, allowing me to reboot brick once a night to clean things up.

So just go to Chrome across the board, you say. Well, we also use Sharepoint, the WSS 3.0 variety. That runs in IE Quirks mode, good luck getting Chrome or Firefox to render that stuff correctly. I'm hoping upgrade to SP 2013 foundation services makes it play better in modern browsers.

Then you have some of SaaS apps that Corp uses. Upgrading to newer version of IE seems to trip some of them up. And they don't work in Quirks mode either. You've got to go into IE Developer tools and change emulation back to IE9/10, not something easily explained to users.

It is a nightmare but solution not to always run latest version of IE or go to Chrome/Firefox. You'll fix some stuff and break some stuff, I don't see a way around it. At least right now.
MemphisITDude
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MemphisITDude,
User Rank: Strategist
8/18/2014 | 1:41:24 PM
Re: IE "the afterthought"
The reason you may not have noticed updates is they are happening secretly in the background. Open task scheduler or services and you'll find Chrome has installed "Google Update Service" and some scheduled tasks. Assuming the OS is supported, being tied to the OS should really be an advantage from an end user's point of view, because there is just one update process to contend with. Separate updates for Windows, Java, Flash, Adobe are annoying interruptions and end users want to get by with as little delay as possible. What does the Firefox (option) say... "No thanks I'll risk it"?

I was in an airport a couple of years ago and watched a woman's reaction to the Adobe Flash update panel that appears after a reboot - she was utterly confused as to what it even meant. I can't fathom why Oracle tries to slip in the Ask Toolbar everytime you update Java. Not to mention all the Web pop-ups that pretend to be system updates.... IMHO, one good thing about an update that is tied to an OS (or App Store) is the user doesn't have to trust so many different companies and people messing with their PC.

 
jries921
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jries921,
User Rank: Ninja
8/18/2014 | 1:16:07 PM
Rebranding won't work
It might confuse people, but most likely, the change will be so widely publicized that most everyone will know that Brand X is just the new name for IE and things will continue as before.


It seems to me that the real problem is that MS keeps trying to tie new versions of IE to new versions of Windows as an upgrade incentive.  Those who choose not to upgrade, or not to upgrade right away, thus have the choice of either continuing to use an obsolete version of IE or switching to a browser that doesn't care so much what version of Windows (or Linux, or OSX, etc) it runs on.

 
DDURBIN1
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DDURBIN1,
User Rank: Ninja
8/18/2014 | 12:56:40 PM
Compatibility Mode forever?
When almost all the websites I visit require that they need to be viewed using IE's compatibility mode, way not just switch to a different browser where the site works just fine?  I'm sure many have just done this such as myself and never went back to IE.
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