Facebook to drop IE6 support on IE9 beta day, September 15

Friday, August 27th, 2010 | Business | by

I’ve been quiet for  while, and wanted to start up again with some great news.  Facebook is going to stop IE6 support for chat on the IE9 beta day.

Projects always ask about IE6 support, whether they need it, etc.  Surprisingly IE7 and IE8 support is also an issue, since they don’t support many of the cool toys supported by actual modern browsers (Chrome, Safari, Firefox).

I hope IE9 quickly replaces at least the IE7 and IE8 communities.  IE 6 seems here to stay, at least for that last 6-8%.

Some other information from that article:

  • Microsoft will support IE6 until April 2014
  • Google has removes IE6 support in Google Docs, Google Sites, Gmail, Google Calendar and YouTube!
  • Microsoft Office Web Apps doesn’t even support IE6 (how could you when trying to do anything cool)

The article quotes numbers as high as 17% for IE6 usage share, but I haven’t seen those numbers in a long time.  My website enjoys an IE6 user base of 0.5% (in the last month, whereas IE, all versions, was around 19%).  Other larger websites I manage see around 7.7% IE6 usage (with IE, all versions, being an amazing 55% of overall traffic).

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3 Comments to Facebook to drop IE6 support on IE9 beta day, September 15

August 27, 2010

Previously I worked as contractor in the Washington for several Federal agencies. Browser support was also an issue for internal applications. Many users are not administrators on their desktops since this reduces support costs. XP is still in high use especially since Vista was a “bust” and Windows 7 is still “new.” All this means a large number of users are using the browser installed with the operating system. Retesting all the internally developed application in another browsers is a real expense. Ultimately it come down to funding the effort to retest and modify applications, and rolling out a browser upgrade to 1000s of desktops. Those empowered to authorize the expense don’t have a compelling reason.

Despite all these reasons, I think Microsoft should end support for this antique.

August 27, 2010

Yeah, it is a huge expense. It’s interesting how such a basic upgrade can be such a problem for IT.

I think the problem speaks more to the problems with forward thinking when IE6 was released, and how poorly it was when originally implemented.

Browsers nowadays such as Chrome / Firefox and Safari manage to self update (given the 10 years of development since IE6 came out, it’s not crazy that MS didn’t do this).

There’s something amazingly frustrating over IT departments not able to upgrade a simple browser. I’m not sure exactly who to blame (the users who can’t be trusted not to ruin their computers, the IT department for maintaining such strict and overpowering policies or upper management who can’t see why they should pay for a free upgrade).

I’ve posted this before, and somewhat think the problem resides in IT administrators. The higher up IT folks who don’t know how to present a business case to upper management.

Thanks for checking out the blog!

Jackson Williams
August 30, 2010

Having just successfully pushed IE8 using WSUS this past summer, I was glad to have gotten off that rickety roller coaster known as IE6. Granted, users were not happy because it was “new”. I have also had some weird issues with our organizations google apps accounts, IE8 seems to make it go into a log on loop…oddest thing I have ever seen. Even though I get more calls for help over it, I am glad to be off IE6. (Also- I have been installing chrome in some places as a test to see if the older people can handle it.)

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