After much fanfare IE9 has appeared for an official release.
The embargo was broken yesterday by Microsoft on its MSNBC website, which you can view in IE9 if you want to. Microsoft's big idea is to kill off previous incarnations, especially IE6, which it apologised for to developers in a banner that's gone viral. It read something like: We're sorry, don't hate us.
IE9 has partners in Facebook, Twitter and Wordpress, as well as commerce partners like Amazon and eBay. It is a further push toward that horrid buzzphrase the "internet of things" with applications shaping the web rather than the dull as dishwater days of frames and similar.
Microsoft, at its pre-IE9 press event, was keen to show off the GPU advantages in a demo full of fish flying around a screen. In it, the GPU acceleration beat the heck out of rivals like Chrome and Firefox, but for how long?
A Firefox developer has said the GPU chest-beating is nonsense though, as it's not what the web is all about. Yet. We'll see who's backing the right horse.
Then there's security updates and a rehash of how the browser looks. Partners such as HP suggest that IE9 is "really a superior browser" and will be shipping it as standard with its machines.
A website called BeautyOfTheWeb.co.uk hopes to showcase the capabilities of the offering from MSFT. Developers will be excited, according to analysts at Ovum, as they'll get to tinker around with HTML5 and all that it brings.
However, for the "majority of corporate IT managers and their users," the launch will be a "non-event" because they rarely keep up to date anyway and IE9 does not run on Windows XP, where most of the suits operate from.
It'll be good for marketing, though, as execs rush to create themselves a thing of HTML5 beauty which looks nice and shiny.
Competitors are expected to unleash rivals in the near future.
As far as take-up goes, the web-savvy will give it a whirl but the majority will probably wait until it lands in a Windows service pack.