Later today see’s the launch of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 browser. IE8 has been available as a beta for quite a while now, but today it’s finally moved to a released version and it is available in 25 different languages.
Some of the new features of IE8 include:
Accelerators. Accelerators make it faster and easier to perform common tasks online by making Web-based services such as ESPN.com, Live Search and Sina available for use directly from the page people are viewing. Users can simply right-click a word or phrase and instantly map, e-mail, or share it.
Web Slices. Web Slices in Internet Explorer 8 makes favourite information from sites such as Digg, Yahoo! Mail, OneRiot, and eBay instantly available wherever someone goes on the Web.
Visual search suggestions. The Instant Search Box in Internet Explorer 8 enables rich, real-time search from sites such as The New York Times, Amazon.com and Wikipedia, as well as sites from people’s own Favourites and History, complete with visuals and detailed information that saves time.
There are also a number of security enhancements in IE8, including:
InPrivate. InPrivate helps to protect people’s data and privacy from being retained locally on the PC they are using. This protects against third parties who might be in a position to track a consumers’ online activities. Consumers have the ability to use either of the features (InPrivate Blocking or InPrivate Filtering) independently.
InPrivate Browsing. When activated, InPrivate Browsing helps ensure that History, temporary Internet files and cookies are not recorded on a PC after browsing. When in InPrivate Browsing, toolbars and extensions are automatically disabled, and browsing History is automatically deleted when the browser is closed.
InPrivate Filtering. InPrivate Filtering helps protect privacy by enabling the consumer to filter content coming from third parties that are in a position to track and aggregate their online behavior. Users are provided with notice, choice and control of which third parties to allow and which ones to filter.
I have been using the beta of IE8 now since the middle of last year and while some of the earlier beta releases had problems, I have to say that I actually do like it. There are some websites that it has problems with, but there is this Compatibility View which you can choose to show those websites instead.
To download Internet Explorer 8 today, click here.
Note: If you are one of those people, like myself, who is running Windows 7 in beta as well, you cannot upgrade to IE8 at this time, you will need to wait for the release candidate of Windows 7.