It looks like those that were expecting Microsoft to deliver the actual bits of Internet Explorer 9 were right on the money. On the second day at MIX10, Microsoft has made available for download the first release of Internet Explorer 9. The Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview is currently up for grabs from Microsoft.
What is critical to note is the fact that the IE9 Platform Preview is not the full Internet Explorer browser. Instead, what Microsoft is offering is a lightweight frame around the IE platform. The preview is usable, but at the same time it is designed for developers and not for end users. As a dev, you will be happy to know that the IE9 Platform Preview has developer tools included by default, but not a back button for end users. Demonstrations and the actual bits were released on IETestDrive.com.
Dean Hachamovitch, general manager of Internet Explorer at Microsoft, is on stage at MIX10, delivering the second day keynote and is already talking Internet Explorer 9. Meanwhile, the first ever IE9 bits are available as what Microsoft has labeled a Platform Preview. “Internet Explorer 9 is the first browser to take standard Web patterns that developers use and run them better on modern PCs through Windows,” Hachamovitch said.
“Internet Explorer 9 enabling GPU-accelerated HTML5 is a milestone for visual computing,” added Drew Henry, general manager of GeForce and ION GPU business unit at NVIDIA Corp. “By harnessing the power of NVIDIA GPUs, Internet Explorer 9 removes the glass ceiling for Web developers, enabling them to build graphically rich, high-performing Web applications.”
The last demo that Hachamovitch focused on, involved support for HTML5 video. However, the IE GM underlined that early adopters and developers wouldn’t get to play around with HTML5 video support in the initial release of the IE9 Platform Preview. Still, the promise from Microsoft is that full HTML5 video support will be added to the IE9 Platform Preview in a future update.
Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) Platform Preview is available for download here.