Microsoft has pushed out its fourth platform preview of Internet Explorer 10.
The Windows Developer Preview of IE10 runs on the preview version of Windows 8, the forthcoming operating system which is built to be more touch-friendly in order to work equally well across desktop PCs, touchscreen all-in-ones and tablets.
Preview version number four of IE10 adds support for further HTML5 technologies, making for faster page rendering and performance improvements across the board.
There’s also support for Cross-Origin Resource Sharing (CORS) which allows the secure usage of XMLHttpRequest across domains, meaning you can upload multiple files from the desktop with a minimum of fuss. Just by selecting, then dragging and dropping them onto the web page, with waiting kept to a minimum (depending on your broadband connection as well, of course).
IE10 preview 4 also allows devs to employ CSS user select property to swiftly mark up which parts of a web page a surfing visitor can select (which bits of text and so forth).
Microsoft is also promising improved HTML5 video features, such as text captions which can be easily added to video clips.
These captions can be displayed on the site alongside the video, and allow the user to click to jump straight to the point in the clip where that caption is shown. Pretty handy for swiftly navigating to where you want to be.
In general, Microsoft is emphasising a gradual shift to web applications rather than pages, so Internet Explorer becomes another part of the OS as Windows Explorer is, and the whole environment is seamless. Or that’s the idea, anyway.
This is where the future lies, according to Microsoft’s sign posts, with everything uniform and seamlessly hooked up under Windows 8’s new metro-style interface.
However, IE10 will still run on Windows 7 in traditional style (although Vista users are out of luck, as were XP users with IE9).