It’s the end of an era for the internet, as Microsoft is finally putting the nail in the coffin of its Internet Explorer browser. As of June 15, 2022, the Internet Explorer 11 desktop app will be retired and go out of support for many versions of Windows 10.
News of the end comes from a blog post that revealed Microsoft would stop providing support for Internet Explorer next year.
Once the industry-standard browser, Internet Explorer has been declining in popularity for about a decade, and took a huge hit when Microsoft itself released Microsoft Edge, a far more secure browser, in 2015. At the time, the message was clear: Internet Explorer is just about done. But their new browser didn’t have the same broad compatibility offered by Explorer, which had been in service since 1995.
At this point, Edge has been around for long enough to meet or surpass Explorer’s compatibility with third-party sites and hardware. It is also significantly more secure, which was why it was created in the first place.
Microsoft Edge was introduced after a high-profile security flaw was pointed out in Internet Explorer. The hardware had been criticized for not being as secure as competitors like Firefox and Chrome, and it seemed at the time as though Microsoft had just come to the conclusion that it would be easier to start from scratch with Edge than it would be to try and fix both the software and Internet Explorer’s damaged reputation.
In the blog post that announced the decision, Microsoft broke down a number of compatibility and security reasons that the app will be retired: “Over the last year, you may have noticed our movement away from Internet Explorer (“IE”) support, such as an announcement of the end of IE support by Microsoft 365 online services. Today, we are at the next stage of that journey: we are announcing that the future of Internet Explorer on Windows 10 is in Microsoft Edge. Not only is Microsoft Edge a faster, more secure and more modern browsing experience than Internet Explorer, but it is also able to address a key concern: compatibility for older, legacy websites and applications. Microsoft Edge has Internet Explorer mode (“IE mode”) built in, so you can access those legacy Internet Explorer-based websites and applications straight from Microsoft Edge. With Microsoft Edge capable of assuming this responsibility and more, the Internet Explorer 11 desktop application will be retired and go out of support on June 15, 2022, for certain versions of Windows 10.”
On August 17, 2021, Microsoft 365 and some other apps will no longer support Internet Explorer. Edge will continue to support “legacy Internet Explorer-based websites and apps” through 2029.