Internet Explorer 6 Service Pack 1 to be Final Standalone Version
Monday June 2nd, 2003
Over the last few days, several people have written in with the news that there will be no further standalone versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer. Future enhancements to the browser will only be delivered in the form of operating system upgrades. The news was confirmed by Internet Explorer Program Manager Brian Countryman in a May 7th online chat discussing the changes made to Internet Explorer for Windows Server 2003. He said: "As part of the OS, IE will continue to evolve, but there will be no future standalone installations. IE6 SP1 is the final standalone installation... Legacy OSes have reached their zenith with the addition of IE 6 SP1. Further improvements to IE will require enhancements to the underlying OS." The next consumer version of Windows, codenamed Longhorn, is due in 2005.
Update! According to a CNET News.com article, the standalone version of IE may, in fact, continue to be updated. "If you're using IE now, for Mac or Windows, you will have access to any appropriate updates," the report quotes a Microsoft representative as saying. "There will be continued innovation and improvement... It's not going anywhere as a product. What happens in the Longhorn timeframe — it's too early to discuss."
Tuesday June 3rd, 2003 2:46 PM
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Why does Apple need to keep MS happy?
They don't need MS for a browser anymore... they've got Safari (and Mozilla).
MS provides the Apple platform with an office suite, but it doesn't have to be that way:
All it takes is Apple deciding to do to OpenOffice what AOL decided to do to Netscape/Mozilla: start pouring money into the opensource project due to realization on the return in investment (which in this case is total freedom from MS). Suddenly Apple can include an office suite bundled with Macs without having to roll licensing fees into the base system cost. This would make Macs more attractive to the masses.
Meanwhile, if OO.org got a infusion of cash from Apple it wouldn't necessarily only benefit the OS X port. This could advance the OO project further as a whole and cause OO to take more of a dent even out of the Windows platform.
MS would have something to be worried about, there.