As Internet Explorer celebrates its 20th birthday, we explore the rise and fall of the web browser.
The year was 1995, the sound was of screeching dial up modems and the arguments were over the use of the landline or the internet. Thankfully, all of these problems are now a thing of the past and it seems like Internet Explorer (IE) is too. The web browser celebrated its 20th birthday this week marking its longevity and integral part of the evolution of the internet.
It is of the opinion that IE, the first web browser to launch on the 16th of August 1995, is no longer as valued as it initially was. So much so that Windows themselves have even taken a defeatist view of IE, tweeting from their Microsoft Edge account:
"Happy 20th Birthday, Internet Explorer! Thanks for all the great work you've done, but I've got it from here ;) "
Signalling that IE’s days are numbered, it’s impressive to see where we have come from to where we are now, not only from a technological perspective but from a user experience view point. Initially when IE 1.0 launched as part of the Plus! range for Windows 95 the software itself was the impressive selling point. However, Windows have been slow to react to competitors who from a user experience perspective have offered a whole different, slick and innovative way of surfing the internet.
The above image is a perfect demonstration of not only the transformation of what we the users see but how businesses have had to cater for this change. Successful technology companies of the past, present and future are able to react quickly to these changes and it’s fair to say that IE has fallen short in making positive changes to their customer journey.
Whether you love or hate IE, it’s difficult not to have an appreciation for the browser as one of the first to allow home browsing. The declining market share and the rocky journey that IE has experienced over the years have all contributed to its slow demise.
Microsoft are clearly moving on with the new Microsoft Edge browser. However, it is the user experience that will make or break the Edge. Microsoft simply cannot make the same mistakes it made with IE and cannot rush to get the browser and its updated out of the door in the same way it did with IE 11.0 which missed key features such as add-ons!
Ultimately, Windows are looking to shake off the reputation of its famous browser and begin a new one with Microsoft Edge. With market share already in favour of other browsers the Edge is going to have to be impressive. As for Internet Explorer, well here’s to a browser that may be retired, but will never be forgotten.
Jan Musa | Social Media & Marketing Manager
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