So, I actually liked IE7, but ended up going to FireFox because I really liked some of its features and plug-ins. However, Iíve always enjoyed the look and feel of IE7, so when IE8 Beta was announced, I wanted to give it a try to see if IE8 was going to win me back. I have to say, it wonít with this beta. I have to say, I hope beta 2 is better because IE8 isnít winning me over.
Yes, it has some neato new features. Slices are interesting, although easy enough to do without IE8. Activities are just glorified keywords and look more to lock in users to sites then make someones life better. The favorites bar looks like the old links and, for the most part, copies Firefox and Safari. It does import your other browserís favorites and feeds. A nice touch I might add. But it its attempt to find replacements for my Firefox plug-inís didnít really work. Too bad. The one feature I was hoping for, in-line spell checking, is still missing. Considering Microsoftís own Word started the trend, Iím surprised to see other browsers taking the lead. I have to say, this is one of the features that makes me use Firefox over IE. And yes, there is ieSpell, but cut and paste in Word would be faster then that software. Feature wise, IE8 seems to be a bust.
Much has been made of Microsoftís decision to make ďsuper standardsĒ mode the default in IE8. Great, I say. My pages that look great in Firefox and Safari should still look great in IE8, right? Not so fast. Seems IE8 isnít quite up to speed yet. Yes, it may pass Acid 2, but seems it doesnít render floats properly. I see tons of sites, that render just fine in those other browsers now break in IE8. So either IE8 is the only one doing it right, or its rendering engine isnít quite ready for prime time. Iím hoping for the latter, because I rarely visited a page that didnít display incorrectly. Iíd chalk it up to people programming for previous versions of IE, but these same sites, again, work fine in Firefox, Safari and Opera. Strike two.
Lastly, Iím thinking that IE8 is more Alpha then Beta. Simple sites caused it to crash and hang. Not all plug-inís work either, also causing IE8 to crash. There is a nice feature to recover just a tab instead of crashing the whole browser ó a nice feature Iíd wish Firefox had. But, a hung tab still hangs the hold browser. At least IE8 now copies Firefoxís session recovery.
I would definitely recommend that you head Microsoft when they say IE8 beta is just for web developers. IE8 is not ready for prime time. You are much better off sticking with IE7 or, like me, Firefox.