Internet Explorer 7
A newer version of Internet Explorer 7 is available.
This download is served from an external siteclose
NOTICE: This link will open a connection to a third-party site. CNET cannot ensure the security of software that is hosted on external sites.
Full user review
"Once Again, Microsoft Playing a Bad Game of Catch-Up!"
This product "looks" nice. But an enhanced GUI and a handful of "useful" new features (that are really overdue features), such as tabbed browsing, is not enough to save Microsoft on this one.
Microsoft's two biggest character flaws as a software development company stick out like a sore thumb with this monstrosity of a "product."
1) This is the most over-the-top bloated set of code I've ever tried to work with as an end user working with a tool to try to accomplish something I know how to do very well.
2) Their new features that could actually be useful have long since been introduced by others like Firefox and they are far less intuitive to work with.
Microsoft took so many hits on its security holes with IE6 that they really went to town with over the top security elements in this new version. All I can say is that this browser is so safety conscious you feel like a deer in the headlights of an oncoming truck while navigating through the web.
Will the average Joe who just wants to surf the web ever be able to figure out how to configure this monstrosity? I believe the answer is "no way"! There are so many security parameters related to all kinds of technology integration and interaction that the typical user will be baffled and overwhelmed when they try to set this up and then use it.
Once people experience this degree of complexity and perceive the need for a computer science degree in order to use IE7, they will begin finding about alternatives like Opera and Firefox that are highly functional, visually appealing and very intuitive. Then there goes even more of Microsoft's browser market share.
If I were Microsoft, I would keep this in beta for a long time. Conduct more useability studies and develop user profile templates that cover 80% of the people who do or will use the web in the next five years. They can pick from one of five types and then there will be auto-configuration of the browser. Better to stay in character and be a little late then to put out something many people will not be able to use and drive them away in droves.