IE8 Now Due In 2009

If you’ve been holding your breath for the release Internet Explorer 8, stop right now. Microsoft has announced that it won’t be out this year after all. The company has opted for another round of testing – known as a “release candidate” version – early in 2009.

In a blog posting, general manager Dean Hachamovitch wrote:

"Our next public release of IE (typically called a ‘release candidate’) indicates the end of the beta period. We want the technical community of people and organizations interested in web browsers to take this update as a strong signal that IE8 is effectively complete and done."

The current beta 2 was released in August, but news that what’s arriving will be the final version has outraged some users, who’ve found frequent problems with the beta version. No specific full release date has been given, although Microsoft has promised it will appear before Windows 7. The general belief is that IE8 will receive a full release around the middle of 2009.