Microsoft this morning released a finished version of Internet Explorer 10 for Windows 7, the operating system that now runs on more than 40 percent of desktop PCs around the world.
IE10 had previously been available for Windows 8, and only in preview mode for Windows 7. The new browser is available for download here, and Microsoft says it will roll out via automatic updates to Windows 7 users starting in the coming weeks. Companies will be able to use a Microsoft tool to block the automatic update.
The new browser brings speed and performance improvements, including faster page load time — a 20 percent speed improvement for many top sites, according to Microsoft.
IE10 is also notable for turning on the browser’s “Do Not Track” privacy option by default, a controversial move among major online advertisers, some of whom have said they will ignore the Do Not Track signal from the Microsoft browser. Advertisers to use information gathered about users through their online activities to target advertising.
Other browser makers also offer the feature but it isn’t turned on by default. Microsoft sees the default setting in part as a competitive advantage in its appeal to get users to try Internet Explorer again. After years of market share declines, Internet Explorer overall has seen its share of the global market level off around 55 percent.