One of the first things a lot of folks will try after installing the developer preview of Windows 8 will be the IE10 browser—the most used tool in Windows. IE 10 in the preview is Platform Preview 3 of IE 10. You can read on the IE blog about the HTML 5 engine work we’re doing. This post is about a big change in Metro style IE, which is the plug-in free experience. In Windows 8, IE 10 is available as a Metro style app and as a desktop app. The desktop app continues to fully support all plug-ins and extensions. The HTML5 and script engines are identical and you can easily switch between the different frame windows if you’d like. Metro style IE provides all the main navigation keyboard shortcuts and mouse support you’ve come to expect—creating tabs, moving between tabs, closing tabs, entering addresses, searching, and more. I’m using this browser full–time, and given the amount of time I spend in Windows Phone, the same experience and use of touch is definitely a plus. But you can decide on what works best for you, and not compromise. Dean Hachamovitch, who leads the IE team, wrote this post.
In a post on MSDN Steven Sinofsky made it clear IE10 in the Immersive UI will not be supporting plug-ins, including Adobe’s Flash.
Claiming that running without plugins will improves battery life as well as security, reliability, and privacy, Steven went on to say that of the top 97000 websites in the world 62% already fell back to HTML5-like methods of serving content, a number which will just continue to improve over the next year before the official release of Windows 8.
The real saving grace however is that the legacy version of IE10 will still continue to support the full range of plug-ins, with users able to tap “Use Desktop View” in Metro style IE to access all the content.
With browsing, where the UI of the web page is much more important that the UI of the browser itself this is not as big a deal as with other desktop-orientated applications, so despite quite an outcry from commenters on MSDN I do not think there is much reason to protest.
A bigger issue feel is that apparently the IE10 Metro version does not share cookies with the IE10 desktop version, which is an amazing faux pas which would violate the unity of both sides of the system.
Microsoft – dont worry about the plug-ins – fix the cookies!