Microsoft’s current version of Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) was old when it was released last year and was old when the company decided that IE7 would be installed (as IE always is) with the latest version of Windows. Previously, Microsoft has liked to release new versions of IE with whatever the current version of Windows is, that trend may change next year.
Ahead of the RC and beta release, a post on the official IEBlog shows IE8 passing the Acid2 test. For those of you not familiar with the Acid2 test, this is a web developing standards test that is supposed to render a “smiley” face which shows which browsers are complaint and which ones are not.
What’s unusual about this is that in the post it is stated that a beta version of IE8 will be available at some point during the first half of 2008 which is way ahead of the scheduled release for Windows 7, the successor to Vista.
It could be suggested that if the beta is out in the first half of the year then the final version may make an end of 2008 or early 2009 appearance which would still be ahead of the current schedule for Windows 7.
At this time it is unclear for which operating system(s) IE8 beta/final will be released for, it is suggested it may be for Vista and Windows 7 only but this could not be confirmed at the time of this writing.