NEW DELHI :
Microsoft is finally pulling the plug on its original Internet browser—the Internet Explorer. After a life cycle of over 25 years, the desktop application for Internet Explorer will be “retired” on 15 June 2022 and it will no longer receive support services from the company either. The company is encouraging users to shift to Microsoft Edge instead, which has legacy support for Internet Explorer-based websites built in.
While the effective end of life for Internet Explorer had happened last year, it still allowed users to use Explorer with limited functions. Microsoft announced last year that the web app for Microsoft Teams will stop working on Internet Explorer 11 (IE11) from 30 November. Additionally, services included in Microsoft 365, such as Outlook and OneDrive, will stop connecting to IE11 from 17 August 2021.
The tech giant had said last year that withdrawing support for these services would mean users will get a “degraded experience” on IE11, the latest version of Internet Explorer. “Over the last year, you may have noticed our movement away from Internet Explorer (“IE”) support, such as an announcement of the end of IE support by Microsoft 365 online services. Today, we are at the next stage of that journey: We are announcing that the future of Internet Explorer on Windows 10 is in Microsoft Edge,” the company said in a post today.
Microsoft also noted that this affects all consumer versions of Internet Explorer, and the browser will still get support on its Long-Term Servicing Channels (LTSC). The company has put a full list of what the retirement covers here.
While Internet Explorer has lost its relevance over the years, the browser is an important part of the history of the Internet. Its story spans the first big antitrust battle between Big Tech and regulators, when Microsoft went in front of the US Department of Justice in the late 1990s. The outcome of that case is one of the reasons why almost all web browsers today are free and led to regulations that changed the way Windows worked.
The web browser used to account for over 90% of the market share around 2004 but dropped steadily since the launch of Google Chrome in 2008. It has less than 1% market share today.
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