When we started looking deeply at HTML5, we saw that it will enable a new class of applications. These applications will stress the browser runtime and underlying hardware in ways today’s websites don’t. We quickly realized that doing HTML5 right – our intent from the start – is more about designing our browser’s subsystems around what these new applications will need than it is about a particular set of features. From the beginning, we approached IE9 with the goal of enabling professional-grade, modern HTML5 support on top of modern hardware through Windows.

At the MIX conference today, we demonstrated how the standard web patterns that developers already know and use broadly run better by taking advantage of PC hardware through IE9 on Windows. This blog post provides an overview of what we showed today, across performance, standards, hardware-accelerated HTML5 graphics, and the availability of the IE9 Platform Preview for developers.

First, we showed IE9’s new script engine, internally known as “Chakra,” and the progress we’ve made on an industry benchmark for JavaScript performance. With the differences between script engines on benchmarks approaching the duration of an eye-blink, we described our approach for making real-world sites faster. Chakra compiles JavaScript in the background on a separate core of the CPU, parallel to IE.

We showed our progress in making the same standards-based HTML, script, and formatting markup work across different browsers. We shared the data and framework that informed our approach, and demonstrated better support for several standards: HTML5, DOM, and CSS3. We showed IE9’s latest Acid3 score (55); as we make progress on the industry goal of having the same markup that developers actually use working across browsers, our Acid3 score will continue to go up. As part of our commitment to the standards process, we submitted test cases to the standards bodies. We also made these tests available for everyone to try in any browser.

In several demonstrations, we showed the significant performance gains that graphically rich, interactive web pages enjoy when a browser takes full advantage of the PC’s hardware capabilities through the operating system. The same HTML, script, and CSS markup work across several different browsers; the pages just run significantly faster in IE9 because of hardware-accelerated graphics. IE9 is also the first browser to provide hardware-accelerated SVG support.

Finally, we announced the availability of the first IE Platform Preview for developers, and our commitment to update it approximately every eight weeks. We want the developer community to have an earlier hands-on experience with the progress we’re making on the IE platform. The Platform Preview, and the feedback loop it is part of, marks a major change from previous IE releases.


IE9 has a new JavaScript engine, “Chakra.” Here’s a chart of IE9’s performance on a particular industry benchmark for JavaScript performance, the Webkit Sunspider test:

You’ll notice that IE9 is faster at this benchmark than IE8 and several other browsers. It’s interesting to note that the difference between today’s IE9 preview and the browsers to its right in this graph. It takes about 70 seconds to identify a 300ms difference between browsers.

As we continue to make IE9’s script engine faster for real world sites, IE will continue to become faster at this particular benchmark as well. To date we’ve done very little specific tuning for Webkit Sunspider. As with most benchmarks, depending on your machine, the differences may vary.

The performance you experience browsing actual websites often has less to do with JavaScript than with other subsystems in the browser. For example, some sites spend more of their time in laying out the page or rendering it than running script. The first chart in this blog post from the Professional Developers Conference illustrates this with data. Today’s PCs have specialized hardware to accelerate graphics performance. IE9 uses that widely available hardware to speed up all text and graphics rendering on webpages and make webpages faster.

To improve JavaScript performance even more, Chakra does something quite different from other script engines today. It has a separate background thread for compiling JavaScript. Windows runs that thread in parallel on a separate core when one is available. Compiling in the background enables users to keep interacting with webpages while IE generates even faster code.  By running separately in the background, this process can take advantage of today’s multi-core machines – so, users with a Core2Duo or QuadCore or i7 or Phenom II can apply that power to making webpages faster without any additional effort.

Developers get the performance benefits of modern PC hardware without having to change anything on their sites. Users simply wait less and interact more, like a native program. This design enables better performance for the web development patterns that occur on many real world sites. The key here is bringing the best technology available to most important language you use, JavaScript.


The goal of standards and interoperability is that the same HTML, script, and formatting markup work the same across different browsers. Eliminating the need for different code paths for different browsers benefits everyone, and creates more opportunity for developers to innovate.

Many standards are still emerging. They are in committee in draft form, or partially implemented, often in different ways, across different browsers.  Developers face a hard challenge here: they need to work harder than they should, to write more and different HTML, script, and markup, just to get similar but not always the same results across different browsers.

We want the same markup to just work across different browsers. In IE9, we’re doing for the rest of the platform what we did for CSS 2.1 in IE8. IE8 delivered a high-quality CSS 2.1 implementation, sticking to the standard, and looking to other implementations in places where the standard is ambiguous. Developers should expect more from across the industry on this front in order to make HTML5 applications easier for developers to write.

Our approach here starts with data. The DOM and JavaScript APIs that developers actually use on the web set the baseline for which standards to support in IE9. To get this data, we built a tool that examined the web API usage of 7000 top sites. Here’s a graph of the distribution – how many sites used each of the APIs. This is data we will blog about in great detail separately.

We set out to do every standard that showed up in the data. In IE9 you’ll also see support for several standards that don’t appear in the data – in order to complete scenarios that HTML5 applications will need.

The main technologies to call out here broadly are HTML5, CSS3, DOM, and SVG. The IE9 test drive site has more specifics and samples. At this time, we’re looking for developer feedback on our implementation of HTML5’s parsing rules, Selection APIs, XHTML support, and inline SVG. Within CSS3, we’re looking for developer feedback on IE9’s support for Selectors, Namespaces, Colors, Values, Backgrounds and Borders, and Fonts. Within DOM, we’re looking for developer feedback on IE9’s support for Core, Events, Style, and Range.

Some people use Acid3 as a shorthand for standards. Acid3 tests about 100 details of a dozen different technologies. Some are still in “under construction.” Some of the patterns, like SMIL animations, are inconsistent with other parts of HTML5, like CSS3 animations, and need to be reconciled. Here’s a screenshot of how today’s IE9 Platform Preview runs today’s Acid3 test:

As IE makes more progress on the industry goal of “same markup” for standards and parts of standards that developers actually use, the Acid3 score will continue to go up as a result. A key part of our approach to web standards is the development of an industry standard test suite. Today, Microsoft has submitted over 100 additional tests of HTML5, CSS3, DOM, and SVG to the W3C. You can try out some of the tests we’ve submitted to the W3C here.

Microsoft works with the standards organization as part of the standards process to create comprehensive tests. We submit our tests to the appropriate group, and work together with other browser vendors as part of that group to establish a fair, accurate, and comprehensive test suite. Today, there are still too many scenarios in which developers need to use different HTML, script and formatting markup and get different results. A comprehensive test suite from the standards body helps developers and the industry.

GPU-powered HTML5

HTML5 applications will need great script performance and consistent “same markup, same results” across browsers. Great HTML5 applications will build on that foundation and go further, providing game-like interactivity and movie-like graphical richness to the user experience. 

Today’s standards-markup web pages and today’s browsers are limited in this regard because they can use only a fraction of what PC hardware and the operating system can do. HTML5 applications will demand more.

In anticipation of these applications, IE9 uses Windows’ modern graphics APIs and the PC’s hardware to accelerate all the graphics and text that the browser draws on the screen. A basic example involves a small, simple web page that animates images, having them follow the mouse pointer:

Notice that running the same HTML, script, and markup, IE9 provides more responsiveness and more frames per second. Many of today’s websites spend much of their time drawing objects to the screen, as described above in the performance section.

IE9 is the first browser to provide fully hardware-accelerated SVG support. The IE9 developer tools support SVG as well, and we are excited to see what developers build on top of modern hardware with a platform that has great performance and internal consistency. We will discuss SVG in depth in a future blog post.

IE Preview

Today we also announced the availability of the first IE9 Platform Preview for developers, and our commitment to update it approximately every eight weeks. The Platform Preview, and the feedback loop it is part of, marks a major change from previous IE releases.

With these Platform Preview builds, developers have earlier access to the progress we’re making on the IE platform. They have a better forum to share and discuss feedback, available directly from the Platform Preview. Combined with our engagement with standards bodies and the development of industry standard test suites, this open community discussion and earlier and more frequent builds reflect our commitment to the web.

As an example of additional standards support to come in an update to the Platform Preview, we showed HTML5 video support at the MIX conference, as well as how HTML5 video (specifically industry standard HD-encoded, H.264 720p) has much better performance when it uses the operating system to take advantage of PC hardware for video decoding. 

If you’re a developer or technical enthusiast, please download the Platform Preview.  It’s the first preview of how standard web patterns that developers know and use broadly can run better by taking advantage of PC hardware on Windows.

Last week, Channel 9 interviewed several of the engineers on the team. You can find videos of the interviews here:

Introducing the IE9 Platform Preview
GPU powered HTML5
IE9 performance: from JavaScript to COM to DOM to HTML5
SVG past, present, future of vector graphics on the web

Dean Hachamovitch
General Manager, Internet Explorer

P.S. The IE9 keynote from MIX is now availble on demand. 

Update 3/18/10 - Added a link to Dean's keynote and added Phenom II to the list of processors which will improve website performance.

The first thing you notice (beside download links) when you go to the home page for the Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview are links to speed and standards tests both from Microsoft and from the outside world. That's noteworthy, since the previous versions of the browser weren't known for speed or adherence to standards. So, that's a hopeful sign. And, in fact, the first results of my testing yielded impressive advances over Internet Explorer 8 in both performance and standards support. Most sites load more snappily than in IE8, and in some cases than in IE's competitors. But this engine can't claim top honors in performance and standards support just yet. Chrome and Opera still lead on a popular JavaScript benchmark, and Firefox supports more HTML 5, at the moment.

One note about running the Preview: Don't try installing in on any nearly-decade-old operating systems (I'm looking at you, XP): If you do, you'll get to a dialog stating "Windows Internet Explorer Platform Preview does not support any operating system earlier than Windows Vista SP2." And of course, don't even think about versions for non-Windows operating systems. IE General Manager Dean Hachamovitch told me that Mac and Linux versions weren't currently in the company's plans.

Internet Explorer 9: Speed
Microsoft is attacking performance on a few fronts in Internet Explorer. Not only has Microsoft's team rewritten the JavaScript engine to bring that subsystem's performance in line with that of competing browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera, but they're using a second core in multicore CPUs (pretty much every PC sold today has a multicore CPU) to compile JavaScript in parallel. Granted, other browsers have done a tremendous job with JIT (just-in-time) compilation of JavaScript, but using the second CPU core is a new twist that makes a lot of sense, and it benefits from Microsoft's knowledge of Windows 7's use of multiple cores.

The standard test that tech reviewers use is the WebKit open source project's SunSpider JavaScript benchmark. But a few caveats are in order before anyone takes the results on these tests as the gospel on JavaScript performance. Even some of the most commonly called-upon JavaScript commands are not included in the tests. But they do show something about performance—anyone who's used Chrome knows it's significantly faster than IE7, and its SunSpider number is an order of magnitude faster. All that said, here are my results, using a 2-GHz Athlon AMD 64 X2-based PC with 2GB RAM, with all unnecessary processes shut down via Task Manager.

Browser SunSpider JavaScript
Benchmark result

(in milleseconds—lower is better)
Firefox 3.6 1,405
Google Chrome 4.0 749
Internet Explorer 7 47,119
Internet Explorer 8 9,015
Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview 1,310
Opera 10.5 577
Safari 4.0 790

As you can see, the improvement from IE7 to IE8 to IE9 is remarkable. While Chrome, Opera, and Safari still lead by a good margin, the number-two browser Firefox is now in IE's rear-view mirror.

But there's more to performance than SunSpider. The Testdrive site for IE9 has a slew of demos that show fast, smooth performance for things like resizing fonts, zooming around maps, and "pulsating bubbles." This speed boost comes from Internet Explorer 9's use of graphics hardware to accelerate image and display operations. The map test uses Bing Maps, but I also tried Google Maps in IE8, IE9, and the current SunSpider leader Opera, as well as in Google's own Chrome browser. The IE9 preview did indeed handle satellite maps and text labels faster than the competition.

One of the most impressive demonstrations of IE9's hardware acceleration is the Flying Images test. Here, 3D icons spin in formation, and the tester can increase the number of icons, their size, and their speed. IE9 consistently maintained above 60 frames per second refresh rate, while SunSpider leader Opera slowed down to 15 fps when I increased the number of icons and zoomed in. One test tool I was sorry to see not included in the test site was one that timed the top 15 or so most popular JavaScript commands; at Microsoft's campus I noted that IE9 was twice as fast as Opera on this. I would really have liked to be able to replicate these results for myself.

In memory use, I could just load one media-heavy site, since the preview doesn't offer tabs. I chose and noted the memory private working set in Task Manager's Processes tab. For the same home page, the IE9 preview required 70MB of RAM, Chrome took 58MB, Firefox 78MB, and (64-bit) IE8 64MB. So it's not wildly out of bounds in memory use. But IE9 did noticeably load the page in a snap, whereas in all the other browsers I could see images drawing.

Internet Explorer 9: Standards Compliance
A big thrust of Internet Explorer 9 is support for some emerging HTML 5 standards. High on everybody's lists among these are support for the Video and Audio tags. These tags allow playing of those media types directly from the browser, as opposed to needing a plug-in such as Adobe's Flash Player to do so. An advantage to Microsoft's implementation over that in Firefox is that IE9 will support industry-standard MPEG-4 and H.264, rather than the laudably royalty-free but little-used Ogg Theora and Vorbis formats supported by Firefox. It's noteworthy that the dominant leader in Internet video, YouTube, uses H.264 in its HTML 5 test site.

Unfortunately, this first build of IE9's platform doesn't yet implement the HTML video, audio, or canvas tags. The last one allows drawing within a Web page, and is already supported by Firefox, Chrome, and Opera. Another problem with support for these tags: A lot of sites test for your browser, so if they see you're using Internet Explorer (any version), you get an alternate page telling you that your browser doesn't support HTML 5 video, even if it does. Microsoft's IE general manager, Dean Hachamovitch (who Lance Ulanoff interviewed on video), hopes developers will start testing for the capability, rather than for the browser, so that content will work across browsers. —next: SVG Video >

Windows XP users will not be able to run the final version of Internet Explorer 9, according to Microsoft executives, cutting out a decade-old, yet still popular operating system.

In fact, the Windows IE9 Platform Preview, as well as the final version, won't run on anything but the latest Microsoft operating systems. Users trying to run the preview code on an XP system will receive the following dialogue box: "Windows Internet Explorer Platform Preview does not support any operating system earlier than Windows Vista SP2."

And of course, don't even think about versions for non-Windows operating systems. IE General Manager Dean Hachamovitch told us that Mac and Linux versions weren't currently in the company's plans.

The reason IE9 doesn't work in XP is that it uses the Direct2D feature of DirectX when accessing the graphics hardware to accelerate image creation and drawing. Direct2D was introduced in Windows 7, but then added to Windows Vista SP2 and Windows Server 2008 R2. But not to WIndows XP.

When I asked the IE9 team about their plans for the legacy OS, they confirmed that XP was not in the cards:

"Windows XP users have a fast, safe, reliable and private browser in Internet Explorer 8," company representatives said in an emailed statement. "As the Web has continued to change in everything from security to the future HTML5 applications developers are starting to build today, browsers should require the modern graphics and security infrastructure that has come along since 2001. Internet Explorer 9 requires the modern graphics and security underpinnings that have come since 2001, and is intended to be run on a modern operating system in order to build on the latest hardware and operating system innovations."

It only makes sense the the OS vendor wants to give people as many reasons to upgrade their PCs to Wnidows 7 as possible, and not spend developer man-hours updating software that debuted nine years ago. Still, this probably won't make XP loyalists smile. They may even jump ship to fast browsers that do run on their platform – like Chrome, Opera, and Safari.

The preview code for the ’s rendering engine was revealed at Microsoft’s MIX10 developer conference in Las Vegas yesterday. The major goals for the new engine are support for the emerging Web standards such as SVG and HTML5, and greater speed.

The preview version is not the fully fledged browser, and is intended for developers, but director of the IE9 project, Dean Hachamovitch told reporters last week that the for the new browser would also feature big changes.

One way in which Internet Explorer 9 will achieve greater speeds is through using the (GPU) for rendering and displaying graphics rather than the (CPU), which is used by other browsers including earlier versions of Internet Explorer. This will significantly improve Web performance.

IE9 will also improve speed by taking advantage of the fact that most computers bought today have multiple CPUs or cores. IE9 will use one core to render JavaScript and the second to compile it to run on the hardware in machine code, with no translation necessary. This will improve performance because there is a massive difference in speed between compiled and interpreted code. This, and the speed gain by using the , was demonstrated at the conference with a display of increasing numbers of spinning three-dimensional icons, which the IE9 preview could handle far better than any other browser. Since less of the first core of CPU is being used, the display is much faster, and will also allow developers to create a new class of Web applications.

Another change in the new browser is an emphasis on browser interoperability, so that programs written for IE9 should run properly on other browsers as well. Hachamovitch said that as supports more of the markups used by websites, their Acid score will improve. (This is a test run by W3C, the official Internet standards body.) The preview browser engine scored 55 out of 100, which is a significant improvement on the previous version’s score of 20.

It is not yet known when the new browser will be released as a beta or final version. Meanwhile, the platform preview is available to be downloaded for a test drive at The preview will be updated around every eight weeks, but does not run on Windows XP, the operating system of over 70% of Windows users.

Microsoft's Ryan Gavin believes that Chrome OS' focus on the software rather than the hardware misses the larger point – and says that as browsers start to take advantage of our devices, they become even more important to our experience.

When asked about Chrome OS and cloud computing Gavin, who heads up the Internet Explorer division, insisted to TechRadar that the arrival of HTML5 in modern browsers, including IE9, shows that the hardware does matter and not just the operating system.

"I won't opine on Google's strategy, but if you think about Chrome OS you can ask 'why would they do that?' Well maybe it's because the device matters, maybe it's because you actually need some of that capability," Gavin said.

No huge delta

"I don't think about this huge delta between something like Office [in Windows] and a rich web application.

"I think that's where the future lies – when people get binary on it I think they miss the larger point."

Gavin points to the flying windows demo used to showcase the graphics capability of IE9, and says that the future still depends on devices that have some hardware oomph.

"For things like that flying windows demo you actually need to take advantage of the computing power of whatever machine you're on," he adds.

"That's important and for those experiences to persist off the web where a developer can write across several platforms - you need the same markup."

Office 2010 model

Gavin believes that the interoperability of Office 2010 and its web apps is a decent model for the future.

"Certainly on our part what we hear from customers is that the experience is what matters - what it can do and the capabilities of it.

"If I'm an Office user, the fact that I have this great Office application on my PC and when I'm on the road the fact I have this rich functionality of a web app [means] all those experiences become intertwined and it becomes part of my Office experience."

Exciting times

Gavin is aware that IE9 has to deliver as a modern web browser, and points to Microsoft's backing for HTML5 and presence on the web standards committees as evidence that the software giant is changing.

"I am more excited about where IE is than I have ever been over last 5 years," he added.

"It's positioned at a truly incredibly important inflection point not only for Microsoft but for the web.

"There is truly an expectation that developers and consumer have in terms of what the web is capable of."

"It's really defining what I think is a new version of the modern web; it doesn't feel like limited content, limited navigation, limited graphics, it feels like a rich application in many respects."

Three weeks ago, Microsoft said Internet Explorer 9 would be supporting just one codec for HTML5 video. Apparently not, because on Wednesday Microsoft said IE9 will support another.

The next version of Microsoft's Web browser will support not only H.264 video for HTML5, but also the now-released and now-open-source VP8 video codec, Dean Hachamovitch, general manager for Internet Explorer, wrote on The Windows Blog. The catch is that IE9 will come with H.264 support, whereas users will have to download a separate codec to watch VP8 videos.

From Hachamovitch's post:

Again, we want to be clear about our intent to support the same markup in the open and interoperable web. We are strongly committed to making sure that in IE9 you can safely view all types of content in all widely used formats. When it comes to video and HTML5, we're all in. In its HTML5 support, IE9 will support playback of H.264 video as well as VP8 video when the user has installed a VP8 codec on Windows.

VP8 is an HTML5-supported video codec Google got last year when it acquired On2 Technologies, which also developed the popular VP6 codec. At its Google I/O conference Wednesday, Google announced that it has released the VP8 codec and that it is royalty-free.

The codec is part of a new "open Web media project" from Google called WebM. Currently in developer preview, WebM is backed by companies such as AMD, AMR, Broadcom, Logitech, Qualcomm, Skype, Texas Instruments and many others.

"We think this is fantastic," wrote on its blog. "The web thrives on open formats. As browsers adopt HTML5 for 'plugin-less' video consumption, WebM along with VP8 will be a great option as the default format.

"H.264 is a great technology but not royalty-free. VP6 is proprietary. Ogg Theora is royalty-free but a ten-year old technology. By offering a high-quality codec with no licensing fees, Google is helping to create a new and formidable player in the video format wars, and one likely to experience massive adoption. We know that Chrome, Mozilla, Opera and others will support WebM right out of the gates."

And soon, Internet Explorer 9 – sort of. After you download that plug-in.

The video-codec debate heated up last month after Apple CEO Steve Jobs went on a tirade against Adobe Flash and threw his company's weight behind H.264. Microsoft was criticized after Hachamovich wrote that IE9 would support only H.264 – Microsoft receives patent-licensing royalties from MPEG LA, the organization that controls the intellectual property rights for H.264.

It's way too soon to predict whether or how quickly VP8 will catch on as a popular video codec. H.264 is proven and established, but VP8 is royalty-free.

In this day of interoperability and the expanding popularity of open source – <cough>Google Android<cough> – VP8 could very well be the next big thing.

With the latest releases of Opera, Google Chrome and Firefox continuing to push the boundaries of the web, the once-dominant Internet Explorer is looking less and less relevant every day.

But we should expect Microsoft to go on the offensive at its upcoming MIX 2010 developer conference in Las Vegas, where, it has been speculated, the company will demonstrate the first beta builds of Internet Explorer 9 and possibly offer a preview release of the browser to developers. Several clues point to the possibility that the next version of IE will include broad support for HTML5 elements, vector graphics and emerging CSS standards. If Microsoft plays its cards right in Vegas, IE 9 could be the release that helps IE get its groove back in the web browser game.

The biggest clue comes from the scheduled sessions for MIX, which takes place mid-March. There’s a two-part talk scheduled on HTML5, entitled HTML5 Now: The Future of Web Markup Today, by Opera Software’s Molly Holzschlag.

Indeed, Holzschlag tells Webmonkey she expects Microsoft to step up HTML5 support in IE9. “Look especially for Microsoft to be working on browser storage and other HTML5 features,” she said in an e-mail.

There’s also a session on IE and SVG, the vector graphics tools supported by pretty much every other browser. IE Senior Program Manager Patrick Dengler is scheduled to present on the Future of Vector Graphics for the Web.

Couple these clues with a post from the IE team on its official blog late last year about increased JavaScript rendering speeds and CSS support, and the team’s recent push to provide better support for SVG graphics and animations, it looks like IE 9 will present a huge step forward for Microsoft into the realm of HTML5, CSS 3 and other modern technologies that drive the most forward-thinking web apps.

Such a shift in thinking would be welcome. Picking on Internet Explorer Explorer is like fishing with dynamite — it’s just too easy to be fun anymore. In fact, many prominent forces on the web have stopped arguing against IE and simply started waving their hands in dismissal. It started with a few developers, but recently even Google has turned up its nose at IE, referring to it as a “non-modern” browser when talking about web standards and releasing its Chrome Frame plug-in to enable IE7 and IE8 users to run more advanced web apps. Worse, third-party developers have started to one-up Microsoft by hacking features into IE, like giving it the ability to display HTML5 video playback when none existed.

The current release, IE8, which shipped on every Windows 7 desktop in 2009, caught Microsoft up to where other browsers were in 2007 with support for CSS 2.1 and a couple of token HTML5 tools — most notably the offline storage elements. But that’s where its support for emerging standards ends.

At PDC09, Microsoft’s last big developer event, president of the Windows division Steven Sinofsky promised that Internet Explorer 9 was going to offer a “more modern” (there’s that word again) browsing experience and emphasized coming improvements in performance, JavaScript rendering, support for existing web standards and support for HTML5 and CSS 3.

But Sinofsky tempered his statements by saying Microsoft will continue to be “responsible” about how much it supports HTML5, so that “we don’t generate a hype cycle for things that aren’t there yet across the board for developers to take advantage of.”

While Microsoft is technically correct when it keeps saying that HTML5 isn’t finished, its failure to offer broad support for the new markup language has held IE back from the web’s cutting edge. The company has traditionally been reticent to support emerging standards, viewing them as a moving target and choosing only to concentrate on standards that have been ratified by the W3C, the web’s governing body. But delays at the W3C haven’t stopped the competition from forging ahead with HTML5, and if IE doesn’t start embracing the new laws of the land now, the browser’s dominance on the web is going to continue to crumble.

We contacted a Microsoft rep for this story, but they chose to save any further talk of IE9 until MIX.