Microsoft’s oft-ridiculed Internet Explorer web browser has been around for what seems like decades, with few major changes or additional elements added to the program. Internet Explorer has become the butt of many jokes online relating to its speed and general lack of security, compared to user perceptions of competing browsers such as Firefox, Opera and Chrome.
However, as Windows 10 nears a public release and looms on the horizon, it looks like a new web browser is also set to arrive from Microsoft to compete with these more advanced competing programs. The new leak shows off ‘Spartan’ an all new way to browse the net from Microsoft.
Although it does seem to be more of an upgrade and an enhancement to the existing Internet Explorer browser, Spartan allegedly is more up to date than previous offerings. A screenshot has appeared on BGR (source link below) of Spartan in action, and what it does seem to show is a browser with a more minimalist approach, which includes icons similar to an operating system desktop.
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Spartan’s design, in more detail, speaks of minimalism, ease of use and easy access to content via icons at the top that lead to favorite pages – the icons themselves make it seem like the Spartan environment is indeed a whole operating system within an operating system, loading pages as if they were programs – a sort of ‘virtual environment’ feel.
The minimalist face and original design of Spartan points to what may be a new trend in browsers being attempted by Microsoft. Continuing the theme of a virtual environment, will apparently include voice command input from the inbuilt Windows 10 digital assistant, Cortana, and most interestingly, the ability to run other web browsers inside of it.
This feature means that up to four Spartan windows can be opened, each running the same web page as if it were being accessed by the different browsers available, if they are installed on the host PC. This means that compatibility in Spartan will be absolute – no web page will be incompatible if a full set of browsers are available to Microsoft’s new browser.
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It’s not know what name Spartan will be released under, with Microsoft telling BGR that the name is only a project name, or placeholder. It’s interesting to not the continuation of the ‘Halo’ theme of names employed in Windows 10, and as of course we know from that game franchise, a Spartan and Cortana together can do pretty much anything.
We’ll stay on board with both of these exciting innovations from Microsoft, and of course it will be very interesting to see the reactions from competitors, and if they end up emulating, copying, or ‘taking inspiration’ from the innovations and new features found in Spartan.