Thursday, April 18, 2024

How Microsoft abandoning the Internet Explorer brand could create mass confusion

Microsoft’s marketing chief confirmed at the company’s Convergence conference yesterday that the Internet Explorer web browser brand will be killed off with Windows 10 and replaced with the company’s new “Project Spartan.”

Although not many expected the Internet Explorer name to be retained for Windows 10, its death has now been confirmed. The old web browser will not be immediately going away in Windows 10 but will not be the primary way of browsing the Internet.

Microsoft marketing chief Chris Capossela explained that IE will still be included for use in some enterprise situations, saying: We’ll continue to have Internet Explorer, but we’ll also have a new browser called Project Spartan, which is codenamed Project Spartan. We have to name the thing.

Throwing Explorer into an early grave could create serious confusion among businesses and enterpises that still use Explorer as their primary browser. For PC users not familiar with Firefox or Chrome, opting for a new browser will require careful deliberation, as every browser offers unique differentiators. Also, Explorer is a well-known brand name, and when Microsoft renames their Windows 10 browser, branding will have to begin fresh. Will every staffer using Windows 10 know where to find this new browser?

A hard look at Microsoft’s new browser

Codenamed Project Spartan, Microsoft’s new web browser is currently under very active development for Windows 10.

Spartan includes a number of new features designed to make browsing easier and more enjoyable. It sports an all-new, more modern interface that looks good regardless of screen size and has thrown away much of the legacy Internet Explorer code so that it is faster and more responsive. In some leaked benchmarks, Javascript performance in Spartan has been the best of any browser available today.

Integration with Microsoft’s Cortana digital assistant will also be a prominent feature of the new browser. A new reading mode will be offered to make it easier to interpret lengthy articles online and it will be possible to annotate websites with notes and drawings for later sharing with others.

Microsoft has tried for years to shake off the negative image of Internet Explorer acquired when the company let the brand stagnate and become mired in its own original success. It quickly fell behind competitive rivals such as Google Chrome when little improvement was made from IE6 right up to the release of IE9 with Windows 7.

This article was originally published on

Flickr photo via Creative Commons


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