Microsoft Releases Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2 to Public

August 28th, 2008 at 12:00 am

internet explorer 8 beta 2 ie8b2 ie8

Microsoft Internet Explorer is losing the browser war to Firefox. Even though IE comes default with Windows, it’s not everyone’s favorite browser and users more often than not shift to Firefox when they get a chance.

Now playing catch up, Microsoft previously released a developer’s beta version of their latest browser IE 8. Yesterday, a public version of that browser has been released to the public, the IE 8 Beta 2. Generally, this version is getting close to its competitor Firefox 3 which enjoyed a record breaking download rate when it was released.

The Microsoft IE8 Beta 2 is feature packed for the average Joe. Unlike the IE 8 Beta 1 which was intended for developer, this public Beta is smoother, and more stable and reliable for everyday use.

"We focused our work around three themes: everyday browsing (the things that real people do all the time), safety (the term most people use for what we’ve called ‘trustworthy’ in previous posts), and the platform (the focus of Beta 1, how developers around the world will build the next billion web pages and the next waves of great services)."

Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2 is available for Vista and XP as well as Server 2003 and 2008.

Microsoft claims that this browser is (as usual) faster, safer, smarter, etc. Many have tried it out and there seems to be no apparent problems so far. With IE’s record, adoption of the browser will take more time than Firefox but it sure seems that they’re on the right track this time.

Here are some of the new features from the complete list.

  • Smart Address Bar. In addition to matching URLs in the user’s site history, the Smart Address Bar in Internet Explorer 8 matches what a user types in the Address Bar with titles in the history as well as content in their favorites and feeds, making it easier to locate sites the user wants to visit.
  • Enhanced Find On Page. Find On Page functionality has been enhanced to improve how users search for text on Web pages.
  • Find On Page. Find On Page now appears as a toolbar activated by pressing Ctrl-F or choosing Find On Page from the Edit menu or Instant Search Box. The toolbar appears below the user’s tab so it doesn’t obscure any of the text on the page.
  • Result count. The enhanced Find On Page functionality shows the user how many places the search text appears on the page.
  • Result highlighting. The enhanced Find On Page functionality highlights all places on the page where the search text appears so users can locate them at a glance.
  • Redesigned New Tab Page. The New Tab Page in Internet Explorer 8 has been redesigned to allow the user to perform common tasks by clicking links on the New Tab Page.
  • Tab Groups. When one tab is opened from another, the new tab is placed next to the originating tab, and both are marked with a colored tab, so users can quickly discern which tabs have related content.