Microsoft announced it was permanently disabling Internet Explorer, one of the first web browsers available to the public, via a software update on Feb. 14.
“The out-of-support Internet Explorer 11 (IE11) desktop application was permanently disabled on certain versions of Windows 10 on February 14, 2023, through a Microsoft Edge update,” the company said in the announcement.
Internet Explorer’s demise isn’t exactly a surprise. The company announced back in June 2022 that the end was near for Internet Explorer, warning users they would need to migrate to the Microsoft Edge browser.
The move came as Internet Explorer compatibility got left behind as web technology continued to advance.
“With a growing number of websites no longer supporting Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge offers a faster, more secure, and more modern browsing experience that can still open legacy, Internet Explorer-dependent sites when needed,” Microsoft said.
The first version of Microsoft Internet Explorer launched in 1995 as one of the first publicly available web browsers, according to CBS News. Over the next 27 years, the tech company released 11 versions of Internet Explorer, with the final one debuting in 2013.
At one point in IE’s history, 95% of computer users had Microsoft Internet Explorer as their primary browser. Things started to change once Google launched Chrome, its answer to Microsoft’s browser.
KTLA reports that as of 2023, Google Chrome holds approximately a 65% share of the browser market. Apple’s Safari sits in second place with 19% of the market share, and Microsoft Edge has 4% of the market share.
On Twitter, user @hack_jartman even posted a sendoff to Internet Explorer by poking a little fun at the antiquated browser.
— HACK JARTMAN (@hack_jartman) February 14, 2023
Anyone who tries to use Internet Explorer will be automatically redirected to Microsoft Edge. In addition, all Internet Explorer visuals, such as the IE11 icons on the start menu and task bar, will disappear by June 2023.