Internet Explorer 9 Review

Ok, so i got this news of Internet Explorer 9’s BETA release from and was quite curious to put it to some tests. Not that too much technical test and all those performance benchmarks – but from an average browser’s point of view. I don’t want to demoralize everyone at the very beginning with some negative comments. Let’s just try to be positive and compare with some other popular browsers (of course Fireforx, Chrome, Safari and Opera). And i don’t want to iterate things written in Microsoft’s site. They did it for IE 8 and their blazing fast JavaScript Engine but all those simply didn’t work for us (developers). None of us made IE as their default browser and from W3C’s browser stat page, it doesn’t look quite promising for Microsoft.

Anyways, let’s just compare some sites in the new and so called Ambitious Browser – Microsoft Internet Explorer 9

1. I begin with my very own blog. I recently embedded one of my favorite font (Titillium) as one of the best CSS3 feature. And i’m disappointed with IE9’s output. Look here. in IE9 

If you enlarge this image (clicking) you can see the header is plain Arial. And this is the IE9. in Chrome

And here comes the output from Chrome. Can you see the font rendering ? It’s almost perfect here. Firefox, Safari behaves the same. Why Microsoft Couldn’t do it in IE9 ?


2. Now I went to some experiments in CSS3 in six revisions and surprisingly none of them works.

3. One of the CSS experiments that has been so cool is a CSS CUBE which is here And again it’s all messed up in IE9. You can clearly see the difference

CSS CUBE in Chrome CSS Cube in IE9

4. Ok, been talking all issues with Display rendering and CSS3 rendering capability but then again to come closer to Firefox for debugging IE 9’s developer tool (which hasn’t quite improved since IE8) needs to be lot more robust. I have to admit, it’s a big step, but not quite there yet. Here’s how it looks.


IE Developer Tool


5. The UI is not competitive at all. Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera or even Maxthon has gone quite far. IE9 has failed to come beating even any of them.


There will be much more if i go on and on and i’m sure it will not stand stronger than the other favorite ones. So the bottom line is – “Why release a major version without not having latest competitive features ?” We, the developers have to work a lot more just to make our sites compatible with IE. Now that we’re not considering IE6’s compatibility officially, who knows how many more lines we have to add to make our CSS close to others.


There used be days (around 1998-2005) where I liked IE more than Netscape, Opera. It was so difficult even to make table layouts well in Netscape Navigator which IE (ver 4 and 5 at that time) was doing much and much better. But to hold the reputation it needed more effort and respect the other browser’s features. Microsoft failed very badly in the browser war.


Last comment i would want to make is that overall, I’m not impressed at all with these release. It’s still beta but will not likely to solve all those glitches that i showed above in the next stable version.


Once again,  my default browser is Chrome and Firefox.


UPDATE : Paul Rouget wrote a more detailed comparison about IE9. You may want to check it out.


Author's gravatar

Md. Mahbubur Rahman

4 thoughts on “Internet Explorer 9 Review

    Author's gravatar

    Use FontSquirrel’s @font-face generator as it kicks out several versions of your font so it will work cross-platform (from IE6 to the iPhone and of course all the modern desktop browsers).

    Author's gravatar

    What a biased review:

    1) Looks perfectly fine, but slightly different as you say.
    2) Fair enough
    3) You really don’t expect non-standard CSS (-moz and -webkit prefixes) to work in IE do you?
    4) Probably right, I prefer Chrome’s at the moment.
    5) Since you’re not using Aero I doubt it’s impressive at all. Other browsers will probably look similarly boring too then.

    Author's gravatar

    I have to admit, i’m biased. But i was waiting for surprises from IE9.

    for you’re saying my blog’s font looks perfectly fine, how did i get that default font (arial) there instead of the embedded font. Font embedding has been introduced by MS long before these Modern Browsers did but they need separate attributes.

    I don’t expect those -moz or -webkit tags to work in IE but what do they have instead ?

    If i have to be impressed with OS given theme, i’m sorry but i can’t accept the UI improvement on that front. Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, Maxthon all made their way to make it cool, why wouldn’t MS ?

    Author's gravatar

    Internet Explorer has received a fair amount of criticism in the past for its tepid web standards support. With IE9, however, Microsoft is heavily touting its improved handing of new web technologies.

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