With Internet Explorer officially arriving, TechRadar caught up with Microsoft's John Curran to talk about IE8 and how it will cope in perhaps the most competitive market for browsers of all time.
Curran, the head of the Windows Commercial Business in the UK, explains in some depth why he believes IE8 is a competitive offering, why only parts of HTML 5 have been adopted and the difficulty in giving people what they need versus giving them what they want.
He also says that Microsoft is prepared to take on anyone in this area, plays down the market share loss over the past year and insists that any Internet Explorer product offers 'the best of both worlds' in terms of ease of use versus cutting edge browser technology. The full interview can be read below:
TechRadar: This is a big release for Microsoft in a competitive market - is there a lot of pressure on you to deliver with IE8?
John Curran: I look at this a little bit differently, we're terribly excited about it.
Internet Explorer has been a key performer for us for 14 or 15 years now and its always been a very competitive marketplace; there's a low switching cost at zero dollars and it's a simple thing to go an acquire a new browser. It's a click of a button on a website and away you go.
For us it's always been about how we get the story right; that we're delighting our customers, and at Microsoft customers is a broad category from everything between an individual user to an enterprise.
How do we make sure that we're developing a browser that really allows our partners, the billion websites that are out there to create truly rich, immersive and exciting experiences? And how do we build a browser that developers want to target and develop against? If we get that simple formula right fundamentally then we believe that people will continue to use and increasingly reach for Internet Explorer.
IE8 is really about developing a real world browser, a browser that just works the way people want it to work in the everyday way they are using them throughout their lives.
Browsers are increasingly important in the way people work, the way they play, the way they interact, from social networking to enterprise and e-commerce. So much of what we do gets consumed online. IE8 is a big step forward.