Design and User Interface:
Microsoft claims with the new design more of a web page can be seen than in Firefox even if it’s only by a few centimeters. It appears that Chrome actually allows you to see a bit more of a page, but honestly the difference in space really seems insignificant to us.
Most of the layout changes should be pretty obvious: the menu bar has been removed and the navigation controls / address bar are now at the forefront. We don’t need to tell you that it looks a lot like Chrome, our guess is that Google’s not exactly flattered by that since we’re actually feeling the look of IE9 more than the cartoony aesthetic of Chrome, but we realize that’s a personal preference. The compatibility view, refresh and stop buttons have been just latched on to the address bar and there are dedicated favorite and tools buttons on the far right side.
This isn’t one of the most obvious new features of IE9, but it may just be our favorite. If you keep the some web applications open all day like Gmail, Pandora, Twitter, and Facebook, but mistakenly close them when they are lumped together with a bunch of other sites. IE9 lets you separate out those sites and lock them right to the Windows Taskbar. You drag a site to the bar, and when pinned it pulls the favicon so it looks like it’s actually a separate program. Some sites will also support jump lists, which is the list of shortcuts that appears when you right click the icons
One Box:The address bar in IE9 still doubles as a search field, but it now has more capabilities. The default search engine is obviously Bing, but you can install Google, Wikipedia, Amazon, Facebook and lots of others through the Add-On page. You are actually becoming bigger fan of Bing by the day, and keeping it as the default search engine has its advantages: typing in terms like “Weather NYC” brought up the temperature and conditions inline, the bar also displays history results.
Tabs aren’t new to Internet Explorer, but Microsoft’s added a few new tricks. They’re really easy to snap out of place now, and even if you’re doing something like playing a video in YouTube, detaching it doesn’t lose your place as content is continuously rendered. Like Chrome, there’s now the ability to just shut down one tab when a website starts to hang. Instead of having to shut down the entire browser, you can go into the task manager and just kill that particular tab. The new tab page shows frequently visited sites along with a meter of how actively you visit them.
IE9 adds a real download manager that lets you see what you’ve recently downloaded as well as see the progress of a current download. Our program downloads appeared in the manager, but oddly a picture download didn’t. It also has a SmartScreen Filter, as it’s been dubbed, that alerts you to security issues. Alerts appear within the browser window now rather than as a pop-up.