Microsoft IE developers want users to ‘give us another chance’

In a recent chat session on Reddit a team of Microsoft IE developers and program managers tried to convince users to give the IE browser a second chance.

During an 'Ask Me Anything' (AMA) chat session one of the IE developers Jonathan Sampson said, "We know it's our job to change the public perception, and to win the hearts of users everywhere. Each person who opens IE, and downloads another browser, is another person we'll be working even harder tomorrow to win back."

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It will definitely be an uphill battle for Microsoft who has seen significant drops in the number of Internet Explorer users in recent times and things have not been improving since a major security flaw was discovered a few months ago and virtually everyone was advising people stop using IE until the problem was fixed.

Well, the problem was fixed but very few people came back.

Now it’s up to the Microsoft team to try and woo back customers.

During the chat session the IE team also discussed the roll out of a new IE release, IE12, that is supposed to be right around the corner but I can’t see how that’s going to help get people back now. They also talked about suspending updates on older versions of the browser but again, I don’t think that’s going to win them any new friends.

Finally, they even talked about the possibility of changing the name of the browser entirely in an effort to shed its negative image. In my experience, simply changing the name of something isn’t going to make that much difference and in fact that is usually one of the last desperate acts companies try when things are going horribly wrong.

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I’m not sure there is anything Microsoft could do that would be enough to lure back users. Most browsers have been improving and changing and moving forward while IE has been scrambling to patch dozens of holes just to keep the ship afloat.

I have been a long time user of IE and for the most part I’ve been quite happy with it. But I too was one of those people who stopped using IE when the security issues surfaced and switched to Chrome. Meanwhile I received a Kindle Fire HD as a gift and had to learn how to navigate through their Silk browser and for some applications I use a MacBook Pro and had to learn how to use Apple’s browser (and, of course, I have some other silly browser on my Android smartphone). Turns out that they are all about the same – some good things and some bad things.

But because Google keeps updating Chrome, adding new features and security rather than fixing massive problems and the fact that it’s integrated with just about everything I have to do for work, I’ll probably stick with it until Microsoft can offer something truly unique and useful that Chrome doesn’t have.

Guy Wright

Guy Wright has been covering the technology space since the days when computers had cranks and networks were steam powered. He has been a writer and editor for many of the most influential publications over the years – publications that helped shape our current technological zeitgeist. He has lost count of the number of articles, blogs, reviews, rants, and books that he has published over the years, but he hasn’t stopped learning and writing about new things.


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