Microsoft Focused on Web Standards for IE Mobile “Overhaul”
The next Windows Phone 7 update may not be not be the massive update that rumors last week pegged it to be, with copy-and-paste to likely be the most visible change, but there’s still the opportunity for big things to come. Microsoft is recruiting for its team working on the next upgrade to Internet Explorer Mobile, and says the release will include a “major overhaul of standard support”.
In the job posting that went up on November 22, Microsoft explains the importance of the browser to WP7 as a platform. As it clarified the sort of work it needs a new senior software development engineer to tackle, the company has given us some insight into what to expect from the next IE Mobile.
The main focus seems to be with ensuring compatibility with current web standards. The obvious target is HTML5, which Internet Explorer 9 supports on the PC, but hasn’t yet made its way to Microsoft’s mobile platform. After all the finger-pointing in regards to Apple and Flash, it’s become clear that the way to develop sites and web applications that are compatible across the widest swath of mobile devices is to just stick with the standards.
Beyond the much-needed HTML5 support, the next IE Mobile incarnation is going to focus on resource conservation. Microsoft wants it to run faster, use less battery power, and make more efficient use of bandwidth. That’s well and good, but phones will get faster on their own and 4G is well on the way to providing extra reserves of bandwidth; what we need is a fully standards-compatible browser.
Microsoft says the new IE will be included in “the next Windows Phone release”, which could mean waiting until WP8 or just refer to an incremental WP7 update.