Microsoft Wants Internet Explorer 6 Dead

Dennis Faas's picture

Using Microsoft's Internet Explorer 6 (IE6) to browse the Internet is one of the worst decisions someone can make. It's the browser equivalent of Swiss cheese, used by hackers and malware goons time and time again to circumvent its extremely weak security controls and infect users with malicious software.

Thus, it's no surprise that Microsoft has announced a deathwatch for the decade-old Internet Explorer 6, which surprisingly still maintains a 12 per cent share of global usage (with half of that number coming from China). Microsoft says it wants to drive down IE6's share of the browser pie to just 1 per cent, or lower. (Source:

Microsoft Committed to Killing Internet Explorer 6

"We bring you the next step in our mission to see IE6 gone for good," said Internet Explorer marketing lead, Roger Capriotti. "To demonstrate our commitment to getting rid of IE6, we're launching a Web site."

The site is called and it tracks Internet Explorer 6's usage across 43 different countries, including the United States, Germany, Russia, Japan and China. There are also tracking stats available for IE6's global usage.

Microsoft began its campaign to kill Internet Explorer 6 a long time ago -- August 2009, in fact. At that time one company executive was quoted saying, "Friends don't let friends use IE6," suggesting that using this antiquated browser was the tech equivalent of driving drunk. Since that time Microsoft has been able to halve IE6's popularity, from 25 per cent to 12. (Source:

Microsoft believes launching the deathwatch site will help create further awareness about the dangers of using IE6 and will contribute to its decline.

Switching from IE to Firefox, Chrome

Of course, the major challenge will be to convince people (particularly those millions of IE6 users in China and India) to switch from IE6 to a newer Microsoft browser. The Redmond-based firm's trouble as of late has been in getting people to use Internet Explorer at all, with Google's Chrome shooting up in popularity to 5.3 per cent.

As of January 2011, web browser usage world-wide is 26.6% for Internet Explorer, 42.8% for Mozilla Firefox, and 23.8% for Google Chrome. (Source:

Microsoft says it will continue to support IE6 until August 2014, but most certainly hopes that it's a moot point by that time.

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