Our story about Microsoft shifting from the Internet Explorer name to the new “Spartan” browser in Windows 10 has some people concerned.  Dave, wrote: ” My concern is the many companies I do business with that involve filling in reports and so forth in IE. I use Firefox for everything else, but it doesn’t work on sites built for IE. What are your thoughts?”


Don’t worry about Internet Explorer just yet, Dave.  Microsoft is keeping Internet Explorer 11 around in Windows 10 specifically for those businesses that use it for certain programs. Think of the Spartan browser as an evolution of Internet Explorer. Microsoft wants a browser that works for both companies and individuals.

So, why not call it Internet Explorer 12? Internet Explorer 11 is very different from IE 8 and both programs have the same name.  It’s all about reputation. Despite being the most popular browser, Internet Explorer has often had a reputation for being sluggish and insecure compared to other browsers. The bad security reputation was largely the result of Internet Explorer 8 running in XP. With XP and IE 8 out of the picture, Internet Explorer is as secure as other major browsers. But the reputation of Internet Explorer as your grandma’s browser has stuck around. Also, Microsoft wants a common browser experience across PCs and mobile devices. They’ll need something both touch and mouse friendly to accomplish that goal. Windows 8 and 8.1 users have both a desktop and an touch-friendly app version of Internet Explorer on their devices, but that’s led to more confusion than cohesion.


Business customers are extremely important to Microsoft, especially since they’re giving the update to Windows 10 and services like Office online away free to consumers for personal use. I’m sure they’ll work to make sure that this new browser functions

Renaming the browser might be easier for Microsoft than saying, “Check out Internet Explorer 12 with all these amazing new features.”  Now I’m not sure exactly what the Spartan Browser can do other than what I’ve heard in press releases and presentations from Microsoft. It has not arrived to my Windows 10 Technical Preview yet. When it does, I’ll make sure to share what I find out with you.

~ Cynthia