Windows 7 without IE 8

Windows 7 will ship without Internet Explorer 8 in EU, and we’ll have to download it if we want to use it.

I’m a fan of IE & MS in general, and am pretty fed up with how much meddling the EU have done with their products…first Vista N (with Media Player) and now Windows 7 E (without IE). I don’t know anyone who has pro-actively purchased the Vista N product, either in the consumer or business world. There is one company I know who, for whatever reason, got the “N” version and then spent a fair amount of time getting Media Player back on to users pcs!

My thoughts are this:

The people who want to change browsers for whatever reason (better ACID test scores, better extensions, faster loading etc) will have no trouble in downloading a new browser and setting that as their default.

The people that don’t know how to do that (Mum’s, Dad’s,OAP’s etc) are also the people who don’t care what brwoser they use. As long as they can access the web they’re happy-they don’t mind if some things are rendered in a non-standards compliant way or if it takes 4/5ths of a second longer to load up…they just want to check their email etc and be done with it.

So who benefits from the un-bundling of IE 8 with Windows 7? That is a question I’m not sure there is an answer to…other than no-one, and maybe the EU getting their power fix.

I see this as at best going almost completely un-noticed as people just download IE 8 anyway or at best, causing extra confusion for users.

Opera are annoying me as they are now saying:

“However, we do not believe that Microsoft’s move will restore competition for desktop browsers. Most users get their operating systems from the OEM channel and Microsoft will recommend that OEMs pre-install IE8. As such, users are unlikely to be given a genuine choice of browsers.”

The way I look at it is:

If Opera is that brilliant and Opera did a proper job marketing it etc, then it’s market share would be bigger…the same goes for the other browsers guys.

I’m a big fan of Microsoft but I wouldn’t refuse to use a better product just because it was made by a competitor. I’ve got an iPod, I always used Google instead of Live Search (although I now Bing), I use VMWare Workstation instead of Virtual PC and there are other examples too. For a number of reasons I prefer Internet Explorer as my default browser but, if I need to, I will use another browser alongside it…I’ve got Firefox on this machine next to IE 8…but I’ve only used it once this year.

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