The Changes That Microsoft Has Made to Improve IE Compatibility in Windows Phone

This text would surely be published in one of these fake news pages if written ten years ago, but today the web works differently. Many mobile sites use proprietary technologies, adopted by the standard iOS and Android browsers. As a result, Internet Explorer, which uses open and standard solutions (!), Not properly renders a series of pages. This should change in Windows Phone 8.1 Update.

Microsoft will have the same job as the alternative browsers of the past decade were: in the next update of Windows Phone 8.1, Internet Explorer 11 support non-standard features for the W3C to make rendering of the similar pages that we see in iOS and Android. According to Microsoft, the changes improve the browsing experience in 40% of the 500 most accessed mobile sites.

What changes are these?

Gradients, animations, transitions and other effects are often inserted into the CSS mobile pages with the prefix “webkit” engine that serves as the basis for Safari and Chrome. Therefore, the code’s properties as “webkit-gradient” and “webkit-transform”. Because Internet Explorer does not support these features, Windows Phone users need to view content in simpler versions of the page.

But when a page is rendered in Internet Explorer updated Windows Phone 8.1 Update, the browser itself will be responsible for translating the code with proprietary technologies to open standards (if any). Microsoft makes clear that not all WebKit properties will be supported by Trident engine, but the most common will be implemented.

There are some proprietary solutions that were popularized by the iPhone and are often used in mobile websites, but are not web standards. Like rowing against the tide is a waste of time, Microsoft decided it will add support for these technologies in Internet Explorer, and other browsers such as Firefox and Opera, are doing.

Mobile websites also often use the Touch Events to interpret the user’s activity on touchscreens. They were not supported by Internet Explorer, which adopted the Events Pointer, newer and better compatibility for those who browse the page using both a touchscreen as a mouse. Now they will be. This has everything to do with Microsoft’s strategy to join all Windows in one.

Last but not least, Microsoft is changing the user agent of Internet Explorer so that sites provide the same content that would provide for Safari. It is not the first time that Microsoft does something like in Internet Explorer 11 for the desktop, the company put in the browser id “like Gecko” Firefox search engine name.

You can read all the details of the changes on the official blog Internet Explorer.