The Death of IE6

By Anthony Caffiero on December 29, 2010

Nothing frustrates me more these days than to learn that a client has a need to support IE6. Typically, this occurs when we are building a website for a client who has a corporate user base. Why is this the case? Well, 99 out of 100 times, someone who is using IE6 is a user who is stuck with it. This is typical of many corporate environments. Often, the corporations have built applications on their network that have a lot of outdated code and poor markup, set up primarily to run IE6. The IT departments of these corporations are scared to pull the plug on IE6 out of fear that their applications will not work correctly in more modern browsers. So, instead of going through the rigors of updating their apps and environment, they instead try to force the rest of the world to support them. An analogy would be walking into the statehouse and demanding that they install bicycle lanes on major highways. Unfair? Perhaps. But let's look into some more history on IE6 before we pass judgement.

IE6 was first launched in August of 2001. Without going into the problems with IE6 (let's just agree that there were many), the bottom line is, Microsoft ended support for IE6 in March of 2010. Done, finito. Call Microsoft and ask them a question about the browser and it's core, and they will kindly tell you to upgrade. Google does not support it either. The browser is almost ten years old, which in technology years, is a lifetime.

What's even more interesting is the efforts made by many in the development world to push back and provide direction for those who are still using IE6. An example of this is: http://www.ie6nomore.com, a website which encourages people to stop using the browser, and devoted a page specifically for corporate users, instructing them to push their IT folks to install Firefox on their standard builds. In this way, those clunky apps set up on IE6 can still be run using IE6, but give their users another modern browser to use for navigating the 21st century world wide web.

Of course, if you are a client/potential client of ours, and you feel very strongly that you need to support IE6, we will do everything in our power to provide the best user experience we can for that browser. And we'll try to keep our grumblings under our breath. Mostly.


About Ridge Marketing

Ridge Marketing is an agency that specializes in crafting creative digital assets and using websites, search, advertising and email to ensure that the right prospects interact with your brand and become loyal customers.

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