There's a good chance Microsoft as a whole is popping open the champagne bottles and tooting leftover New Year's Day horns, as the company has finally succeeded in pushing the masses into ditching Internet Explorer 6.
The company has for years literally begged consumers to update older versions of Internet Explorer, warning that it would reduce the (high) risk of acquiring viruses and other malicious malware. The company even just recently introduced a feature in Windows Update that will automatically update Internet Explorer, seemingly pushing users into staying current rather than ignoring browser revisions and risking infection.
But now the company employees are seemingly dancing in the streets, as the official U.S.-based Internet Explorer 6 numbers have rolled in, and they report well below 1-percent. Worldwide, the number still hovers just below 8-percent as of December 2011, with China serving as the biggest IE6 offender followed by South Korea and Japan. Norway has the least number of IE6 users followed by Finland and the United States.
For the record, Internet Explorer 9.0.8112.16421 is the latest official release from Microsoft as of this writing.
"IE6 has been the punch line of browser jokes for a while, and we’ve been as eager as anyone to see it go away," writes Roger Capriotti, Director of Internet Explorer Marketing. "In fact, we launched the IE6 Countdown site last March to help accelerate the process. Less than a year later, I’m thrilled to say that the United States has joined the ranks of Austria, Poland, Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway in dropping below 1-percent usage of IE6."
"In addition, the Czech Republic, Mexico, Ukraine, Portugal and the Philippines are also entering the Champions’ Circle," he added. "We hope this means more developers and IT Pros can consider IE6 a “low-priority” at this point and stop spending their time having to support such an outdated browser."
Consumers still using Internet Explorer 7 or older should head here and install the latest version. Features include support for HTML5, hardware acceleration, a faster start-up time and more. It will be like a brand new internet!