On Wednesday, tech giant Microsoft officially stopped supporting Internet Explorer (IE), the web browser that once dominated the market – and even led to a no-confidence motion by the US government.
Internet Explorer was officially launched on August 16, 1995, and quickly emerged as the winner in the late 1990’s, beating rival Netscape in the so-called “browser wars”.
However, Microsoft’s dominance of the market did not last long, and the release of Firefox in 2002 led to a wave of open-source browsers, including Google Chrome, which was released in 2008. It wasn’t the end for IE, but it was probably the “end in the beginning” to quote the late Sir Winston Churchill. Microsoft saw Edge in 2015 as a much more secure and modern browser and finally advanced Edge.
“The death of IE marks the official end of the Internet days when access to and integration of content driven online businesses more than advertising. Microsoft’s activities around the IE, including its bundling with Windows, have been blamed on the company. Sherman Antitrust , Says technology industry analyst Charles King of Pand-IT.
“While Microsoft survived the crash, its victory in ‘Browser War’ was short-lived, and IE continued to lose ground to competitors, including Firefox and Google’s Chrome,” King explained. “The story of the rise of IE’s dominance and the subsequent collapse of irrelevance parallels the evolution of ecommerce and other activities. It was an exciting journey that was once considered a highly unlikely end.”
Twitter Response: Browser History
The end of official support for IE was marked on social media on Wednesday, and there were about 100,000 tweets dedicated to the browser. To some it was like the death of an old friend.
The official Twitter account of Finn-tech news site Morning Brew (MorningBrew) shared a picture of Pixar animation character Woody with the caption “So long a mate”, with the caption, “Farewell is never easy ৷ 27 years later, Microsoft has officially Internet Explorer has been shutting down since Wednesday. “
“Microsoft is retiring Internet Explorer today after almost 27 years. RIP,” noted the influential, gaming and sports news site Dexerto (@dexerto).
More humorously, the LizaMinnelliOutlives humor account (iLiZaOutlives), tweeted, “Liza Minnelli has overtaken the Internet Explorer browser. 27 years later, Microsoft is officially shutting it down.”
Others were less lenient in evaluating the role of IE in the history of the browser.
“You will miss Internet Explorer,” suggested Malaysian news site MGAG (yMy_MGAG), which shared a cartoon of death that told IE it was time to go.
A similar theme was shared by web video producer Marquez Brownlee (@MKBHD), who jokingly tweeted, “Today is the official end of Microsoft support for Internet Explorer. RIP the # 1 Chrome Installer of All Time”
“Respect Internet Explorer ++!”, Added mn_google, noting that you can’t download browsers other than IE!
IE 27 joined the club – or did?
Although the browser has not yet reached its 27th anniversary, which is still technically two months away, some users have suggested that IE has joined the infamous “27 Club” of musicians, artists and performers who have died at the age of 27. Those at the 27 club include blues musician Robert Johnson, Rolling Stones’ Brian Jones, Jimmy Hendrix, Janice Joplin, Jim Morrison, Jean-Michel Basquette, Kurt Cobain and Amy Weinhouse.
“No. [sic] Joining Internet Explorer 27 Club, “tweeted @Mountbeliache.
chrisforfree also tweeted, “Oh no join IE 27 club”
“Internet Explorer 27 is ready to join the club. StatCounter shows the complete collapse of IE on the desktop (blue line – let’s not even go into how mobile browsing prioritizes visits nowadays). By IE, Kurt, Jimmy, Jim, Amy and vice versa , You did not shake my earth, “says Evan Cypress (@EvanCypress).
“Unlike the other 27 clubs, IE’s prime seems to have passed,” added willkanellos.
IE seems to be just a part of our browser history right now.