Unnamed sources speaking with The Verge revealed Microsoft’s plans to overhaul the next version of Internet Explorer into a browser you’ll actually want to use. The browser will apparently have new features that aren’t available on any other browser like the ability to annotate web pages. The annotations are save in OneDrive to be shared easily.
Codenamed Spartan (like the soldiers in Halo), the browser will also feature Microsoft’s Cortana digital assistant (another Halo reference). We already know that Cortana is coming to Windows 10 so bringing Cortana to the browser seems redundant. However, it’s likely that Microsoft will bring Spartan to older versions of Windows so more people can use the feature.
Cortana in Windows 10 Technical Preview
Chrome has Google Now integrated into the browser but it doesn’t do much at this point. It shows your typical weather, traffic and package tracking cards but it’s not really an assistant like Siri or Cortana is. Cortana will apparently “every instance of the existing Bing methods in Internet Explorer.”
Spartan will also get grouped tabs, something I wish Chrome and Firefox had. Sure there are extensions to achieve this but having it built in makes it easier. By grouping tabs, you’ll be able to view tabs by site instead of hunting around for them.
Microsoft plans to deploy Spartan on desktop, tablets and phones at the same time. While there won’t be a universal app that works on every device, Spartan will be available to download from the Windows Store. There will be a desktop version and one for tablets and phones. The advantage of this is to provide a consistent user experience across all of Microsoft’s platforms.
We should hear more about Microsoft’s plans for Internet Explorer on January 21st during the company’s Windows 10 event.
Microsoft has declined to comment on these rumors so take them with a grain of salt.
Source: The Verge
Follow me on Twitter: @lewisleong