Microsoft's Internet Explorer Developer Channel, revealed Monday, is providing developers a sneak peek at upcoming improvements planned for its browser, with the focus now on WebDriver and WebGL support.
Microsoft's preview platform comes as the browser has fallen to No. 2 in the market behind Google's Chrome browser, according to an Adobe report. An analyst, though, stressed that Internet Explorer remains important. "IE is still significant," said Michael Azoff, of Ovum. "There will remain a core of 'Microsoft shop' users out there for years ahead, so despite our more fragmented IT world, IE still has relevance, and [IE Developer Channel] will be welcomed by Microsoft developers."
IE Developer Channel gives developers more lead time on upcoming changes and could help prevent site incompatibilities, said analyst Rob Sanfilippo, of Directions of Microsoft. "IE11 introduced many site compatibility issues when it was introduced, likely forcing customers to switch to other browsers to use critical sites," he said. "The situation has improved since IE11 launch by either site developers modifying their code or updates that have been made to IE11."
Microsoft also is listing a roster of improvements in IE Developer Channel, noting many under consideration for the browser, such as Web notifications, an API for displaying notifications to the user. "As we work on new features and standards, we will continue to share early code through the IE Developer Channel. You can always go to the DevChannel.Modern.IE page to learn more about the latest features in the IE Developer Channel," said Microsoft's Jason Weber, program manager for Internet Explorer, in a blog post.
IE Developer Channel can run either with IE11 or independently of it.
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