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03.04.2009
IE8 has arrived, what's the future for IE6?
By Simon Burge, Director

This month finally saw the public release of Internet Explorer 8. So far we are relieved to say that all of our websites are rendering nicely and little, if any remedial work was required to ensure they displayed correctly. Phew!

Now that Microsoft have finally released this long awaited new browser, it begs the question - what future does IE6 have, if any?

Unknown to most of our clients, mediagarden (like many agencies in our field) spend hours, if not days fighting with CSS (that's Cascading Style Sheets in plain English) to get it to render the look and feel of our websites correctly so that users of all browsers and operating systems can enjoy navigating our websites using whichever technology they choose.

In today's internet industry, new browsers, platforms and hand-held devices are released at a startling rate and keeping up with the technology is not only hard work, but very time consuming. At certain points in time we have to take the decision that some technologies need to be left where they belong - in the past.

Believe it or not but as much as 17% of internet users are still surfing the web using IE6*. When you consider this browser was released as far back as 2003, that's a surprising figure. However, that figure of 17% was almost double this time last year. Upgrades to IE7 and IE8 are free, not to mention the plethora of other, and in some cases, superior browsers such as Firefox, Safari and Chrome are also widely available to all. So why is 6 - 7 year old technology still being used?

Well there could be a number of answers but in our minds we feel that now is the time to move on. IE6 has been a major thorn in the web designers side and we are quite honestly, relieved to announce that we will be developing all future sites for IE7 and above, plus all Mozilla version 2 + based browsers but will no longer support IE6.

IE6 has had a decent innings we can all agree however, stats are showing that the users numbers are depleting fast so we will no longer be officially supporting this old relic - sorry, we couldn't resist it!

Official figures for browser installations for March 2009 are as follows:

IE8:
1.4%
IE7: 24.9%
IE6: 17.0%
Firefox: 46.5%
Chrome: 4.2%
Safari: 3.1%
Opera: 2.3%

*Statistics gathered from W3Schools.com - correct at the time of publishing.


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IE8 has arrived, what's the future for IE6?
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