The Disappointment of Internet Explorer 8.0

by Krishna on February 27, 2009

internet explorer 8 Microsoft’s neglect of Internet Explorer over the years has finally caught up to them. IE 8, while a significant improvement over IE 7, lags behind Google Chrome and now the latest Apple Safari browser. Here are some of the significant drawbacks to using IE 8:

  1. Slower Launch Time: For a long time, IE’s main advantage was its launch speed. It has become so bloated that you could launch Chrome after IE, and Chrome would appear earlier. Opening a new tab is not only slow, but blocking, so that you have to wait. Compare that with the performance of Firefox. This may get better in future releases, but right now the way IE launches and handles a process for each tab is terrible.
  2. Both an Address box and a Search box: Chrome has done away with the search box and allows you to search directly from the address box. It also shows you possible results for what you are typing. Having both the boxes is simply unnecessary. This would have been understandable in the previous IE release, but considering how much IE 8 does with both the address bar and the search box, Microsoft could have integrated them into a single object.
  3. No Dashboard: Opera, Chrome and Safari allow you to have a home page from where you can launch your favorite sites. Chrome does this automatically by showing the sites you visit most frequently and allows you to search your navigation history. It also shows you the most recently closed tabs and lets you launch them again. The most appealing aspect of this feature is that the browser remembers your navigation history in that tab.
  4. Still No Favorites Manager: Incredible as it seems, after all these years, there is no easy way to manage your favorites in Internet Explorer. Every other browser has a bookmark manager that allows you to easily add and delete bookmarks and folders. Microsoft boxed itself into a corner by saving IE favorites as individual files, but that is not really an excuse for providing a better way to manage favorites.

Many of the new IE 8 features (such as private browsing) have been available in other browsers for some time now. However, I don’t want to suggest that IE 8 is entirely bad news. As I said, it improves upon IE 7 and comes closer to offerings by competitors. Some features such as accelerators and a better Find feature provide productivity gains. Overall though, IE 8 leaves you feeling unsatisfied.

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