Microsoft Changes Course: New Standalone IE for XP Planned
After claiming for months it would not issue a new version of its Internet Explorer browser until it shipped Longhorn, Microsoft decides to deliver IE 7.0.In a complete about-face, Microsoft Corp. has decided to deliver a new, standalone version of its Internet Explorer browser in order to stem potential customer defections due to security and feature concerns. Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates announced at the RSA Conference in San Francisco on Tuesday that Microsoft will deliver Internet Explorer 7.0 for Windows XP Service Pack 2 customers. The 7.0 release, which will go to beta this summer, will add new anti-phishing, anti-spyware and anti-virus safeguards, according to company officials. Microsoft officials did not offer a target release date for the final IE 7.0.
On Microsofts IE group blog, company officials acknowledged they had received some requests for an IE refresh for older versions of Windows, including Windows 2000. The response? "Right now, were focused on XP SP2. Were actively listening to our major Windows 2000 customers about what they want and comparing that to the engineering and logistical complexity of that work," wrote Dean Hachamovitch, the head of the IE team.