Microsoft: Internet Explorer 9 Set for March 14 Release

The release-to-Web version of Internet Explorer 9 is scheduled to become available this Monday, according to Microsoft.

In an announcement on Wednesday, Microsoft said IE 9 downloads will be available starting 9 p.m. Pacific Time on March 14. That same day, Microsoft plans to hold a party for developers and designers at 9 p.m. at the Austin City Limits Live in Austin, Texas. The party will follow Microsoft's participation in the South by Southwest (SXSW) event, also being held in Austin.

The party, at which Microsoft expects to host three bands, appears to be invitation- or guest list-only.

Dean Hachamovitch, corporate vice president of Internet Explorer, thanked the overall testing community for delivering 17,000 pieces of feedback to Microsoft, spanning from the time of IE 9's beta release in September to its release candidate launch in February, as described in a Microsoft Channel 9 video.

Hachamovitch noted that Microsoft made certain decisions about what HTML 5 features to support in IE 9, based not just on frequency of use but also on stability. For the promising yet still-evolving HTML 5 technologies not supported in the browser, Microsoft offers test cases for developers at its HTML5 Labs site.

Hachamovitch plans to deliver the keynote address at the MIX 11 Web developer event in Las Vegas, which will open on April 12.

The final IE 9 release will arrive a little more than one year from the time Microsoft announced its first platform preview of IE 9. A general overview of what Microsoft intended to accomplish with IE 9 is described by Ryan Gavin, senior director of Internet Explorer business and marketing, in this Q&A. A list of some of the top features can be found here.

For every birth comes a death, and when it comes to Internet Explorer, Microsoft is showing enthusiasm not just about the arrival of IE 9, but also about the impending death of its IE 6 browser. Microsoft has started an Internet Explorer 6 countdown site that will chronicle the fading use of its near-decade-old browser. IE 6 continues to be used, but it has potential security risks and requires that Web developers code for quirks.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.