Internet explorer finally passes on at 27

A final nail has been put to internet Explorer and Microsoft is officially telling users to move on from the 27-year-old application and switch to its newer Edge browser instead.

The “timely” death of Internet Explorer came about due to:

  • Launch of faster browsers such as Chrome and Firefox. These fast browsers made it easy for users to navigate platforms including Google Search, Facebook and YouTube among others.
  • The rise of smartphones delivered the fatal blow, with Apple’s pre-installed Safari browser and Google Chrome on Android phones helping to shift internet access and usage into the mobile realm.

Despite the death of Internet Explorer, its legacy will live on having come pre-installed on Windows computers for more than two decades. Internet Explorer debuted on Windows desktop computers in 1995 and by 2004, had cornered 95% of the market.

What next after Internet Explorer?

Users wanting to stick with Microsoft are being directed to Microsoft Edge, launched in 2015, alongside Windows 10. Microsoft says access to its legacy desktop browser will be maintained on older versions of Windows, including Windows 8.1, Windows 7 Extended Security Updates and limited versions of Windows 10.

What happens as Internet Explorer is being put to rest?

Internet Explorer (IE) retired on June 15, 2022, and it is now out of support.

IE is being retired in two phases to ensure a quality driven retirement. During the first phase, the redirection phase, devices are being progressively redirected from IE to Microsoft Edge over the next few months after June 15, 2022. Following industry best practices, this progressive redirection will be quality-driven to ensure a smooth IE11 retirement for you and your organization. To minimize the level of potential business disruption within an organization at one time, not all devices will be redirected at the same time. This approach is designed so that you can quickly identify and resolve any potential issues, such as missed sites, before all devices within your organization are redirected. The intent is for the redirection phase for all devices with Windows platforms that are in-scope for IE retirement to be complete in the next few months.

Note: Windows Updates are not used to redirect devices during the redirection phase. We do not recommend skipping Windows Updates as they contain critical operating system security patches.

The second phase of retirement is the Windows Update phase. After the redirection phase completes, IE will be permanently disabled through a future Windows Update on all devices with Windows platforms that are in-scope for IE retirement. It will follow the standard Windows update process as part of an optional preview “C” release followed by a “B” Patch Tuesday release. Given the cumulative nature of Windows Updates, IE disablement will persist in subsequent Windows Updates.

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