I stumbled upon a post from the SEO book website this morning http://www.seobook.com/download-ie9

It talked about the goodness that is Internet Explorer 9, and how wonderful it’s reviews have been and how large it’s user base will become.  Then it went on to say how Google, Youtube’s owners now being evil by posting a warning that IE 9 doesn’t make  it’s modern list.

I’ve got an alternate point of view.

Internet Explorer 9 only runs on Vista and Windows 7.  It’s not platform independent like the browsers on the youtube shortlist, i.e. IE9 will not run on Linux, OSX or other non microsoft operating systems.

Microsoft aren’t really going out of their way to change this.

This makes it kinda hard for people who make the nice modern websites people like to visit in 2011.  Also, I’m not really aware of many cutting edge web developers who make awesome stuff using a windows platform, nor do I know any that espose the benifit of any Microsoft browser.

In fact, not being able to install IE9 on Linux or OSX actually puts web app developers at a disadvantage in supporting it.  I’d even to go so far to say that I consider it a B grade gated browser.

In terms of my own web applications, I’ve had reports of some fail – surprisingly with it’s Javascript engine.  Because I don’t use Windows 7, and am unlikely to – I’m not really going out of my way to do anything about it.  Besides it’s enough to support IE 7 and 8 at the minimum functional level.

There isn’t a business case to build out suport for IE9, including Windows 7 infrastructure and then add a third layer of browser hacks when it delivers nil or negligible value.

Until we can bill Microsoft directly for browser compliance infrastructure, development effort and customer support time, I think the best option is to post the message like Youtube has and tell people to use a modern browser.

What do you think?

Sam.

@samotage

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