Microsoft on Wednesday introduced the latest version of its browser,
Internet Explorer 11, complete with a host of touch features designed
for Windows 8.1.
In a blog post
announcing the launch, Microsoft focused much of its time on the “touch
optimized” feature set available in Internet Explorer 11. The browser
includes a “stick to your finger” feature that allows users to pan,
zoom, and swipe around a Web site. That swipe feature can also be used
for folks to go back to a previous page or forward to a previously
viewed page. The browser also includes touch hover menu support.
Touch-optimized features is a logical addition to Internet Explorer
11. An increasing number of people are adopting touch-based devices,
and have grown comfortable with swiping and panning around a page. The
experience is far more intuitive than a typical browsing experience.
Still, the vast majority of people actually engaging in those actions
are doing so on tablets and smartphones. And although it’ll be
available on the PC, and Apple has similar features built into its own
operating system, thanks to its Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad, for many
computer users, interacting with the back button, address bar, and
other core features as they always have is second nature. In other
words, while touch may be a nice addition, it’s not a must-have.
In addition to its touch features, Internet Explorer 11 comes with
support for up to 100 tab per window and is designed to efficiently use
battery life. Microsoft also says that pages will load more quickly and
HTML5 is fully supported without the need for additional plugins.
Interestingly, Internet Explorer 11 is coming to
Windows 7. Engadget reported
recently that Microsoft has confirmed the browser will make its way to
the company’s last operating system. It’s not clear, however, when that
launch will happen.