Microsoft has built IE10’s user experience exclusively around all the Metro style design patterns to be fast and fluid for even the most intense everyday browsing by adding more conveniences like saving images from web pages, “paste and go” for faster navigation, and integrated network diagnostics.
The interface and controls are designed to be there when you need them and out of view when you don’t. It has great touch keyboard support for forms, integrated spell checking with AutoCorrect, finding text on the page, etc for the comprehensive functionality that people need for everyday heavy-duty web browsing. The user experience follows Metro style patterns and conventions for personality, animations, and command activation, and support for Windows 8 charms, snap, and more.
IE10 is fast and fluid for the full web, not just the mobile versions of sites. It is super responsive to touch, mouse, and keyboard. The Metro style browser delivers on touch browsing, not just browsing on a touch device. You can feel it in the stick-to-your-finger responsiveness of the touch support for panning and zooming, swiping back and forward for page navigation, and double tapping to zoom in and out of content.
The Release Preview includes improved visual feedback when following links with touch, for higher confidence even when the site isn’t coded for touch. Context menus and form controls are optimized for touch, and the browser responds fluidly to device orientation (scaling smoothly to landscape and portrait screen layouts) and “snapping” Windows 8 applications next to it. IE10 also improves on the experience of browsing the Web with mouse and keyboard with support for the keyboard shortcuts and convenient mouse affordances for back and forward navigation.
Metro style IE10 takes a different, more modern approach to browsing. It puts the focus squarely on the websites you browse rather than the tab and window management intensive activity that has defined browsing for the last decade. For example, in the Release Preview, you can double-tap to focus on HTML5 video with full-screen playback.
Navigation: Navigation tiles are designed to help you find and navigate to sites immediately using the site’s icon and color while minimizing your typing. In the Release Preview, the layout of these tiles have been improved for efficiency and speed, optimized for visual recognition of sites you visit most often, and with clearer consistency with the Start screen.
You can quickly access your favorites by typing the first few letters of the name and in the Release Preview, favorite and pinned sites are marked with a badge for quick recognition. IE shows you frequently visited sites as well as sites that you’ve pinned to the Start screen. As you type in the address bar, the navigation tiles filter to show you sites from your history, favorites and even popular URLs.
With Windows 8 roaming and connected accounts, your browsing history and favorites roam with you so that you can easily access recent webpages across all of your PCs.
The navigation bar in IE10 appears when you need it, again keeping the focus on websites. In the Windows Release Preview, the navigation bar consolidates easy-to-use controls (touch or keyboard/mouse) for common operations like back, forward, stop/refresh, pinning sites to the Start screen, and getting an app. The address bar shows badges and coloring for secure sites, SmartScreen, and InPrivate browsing. It also supports auto-complete as well as web search, matching the behavior of IE on the desktop. Also new in Release Preview is the “Paste and Go” command for fast navigation to copied URLs or search terms on the clipboard. The address box shows a progress indicator when a page is loading, and includes indicators for site compatibility and tracking protection. The navigation bar includes commands for Find on Page, and Open in IE on the desktop, for compatibility with sites that require legacy plug-in technologies, or for when you are using desktop tools and wish to continue using them in your existing workflows.
Enhanced touch browsing: In the Release Preview, IE10’s Metro style experience offers a new way of browsing multi-page and sequenced content. Flip ahead enables you to navigate your favorite sites like you read a magazine by replacing the need to click on links with a more natural forward swipe gesture on touch-centric devices (and forward button with mouse).
Once you turn on Flip Ahead, you can swipe through content spread across multiple pages to go to the next page within the same article, post or thread. When browsing sequenced content, such as blogs or news sites, and whenever you’ve reached the end of your multi-page content, flip ahead will suggest an appropriate next article, post or thread to continue your exploration. Using Flip Ahead requires end user opt-in, and sends your browsing history to Microsoft to improve the quality of the experience.
Tabs: Browsing multiple web pages is core to any good web experience. The Metro style tab switcher appears when you swipe in from the bottom or top of the screen with touch, right-click with the mouse, or press Windows key+Z on the keyboard:
Active tabs are shown as page thumbnails with page titles in text overlays. Tabs have a touch-friendly button for closing, and button for creating a new tab, or a new InPrivate tab. IE10 shows the last 10 tabs you’ve used, reducing the need to actively manage your tabs. You can even clean up tabs quickly and easily with one command.
Touch keyboard: IE10 works good with physical keyboards as well as the Windows 8 touch keyboard, which it automatically adjusts to make your experience easier. For example, when you set focus in the address bar, the “/” and “.com” keys become available to quickly enter URLs:
IE10 takes a clean, “low nag” approach to notifications. All alerts and user prompts come through a notification bar at the bottom of the screen. IE uses Windows 8 Metro style “fly-outs” when more interaction is needed. Notification bars automatically dismiss as appropriate. Downloads in the Metro style browser protect you from malicious software via SmartScreen’s Application Reputation, as in IE on the desktop. The Release Preview adds support for “pop-up” windows as background tabs in the Metro style experience.
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