With the recent release of Windows 8.1 Preview, Internet Explorer 11 continues our vision of providing the best Web experience across the full range of Windows devices and screen sizes.

IE11 on Windows 8.1 Preview delivers the best browsing experience for getting to your sites quickly and using them together with Windows Store apps in Windows 8.1. Browsing feels fast, fluid and perfect for touch with many tabs, richer suggestions, organized favorites and side-by-side experiences for comparing sites and using sites with Windows Store apps together.

In IE11, developers can build next generation experiences with professional-quality Web video, and hyper-fast 2D and 3D Web technologies that make the most of the underlying hardware. IE11 supports real world standards and compatibility, and new developer tools enable developers to build high-performance Web experiences.

With IE11 for Windows 7, customers receive all of the performance, security, and under-the-hood changes that enable a compatible Web experience. The Developer Preview makes it easier to build exciting Web content that will eventually be available to over 700 million Windows users. For developers, we are also providing an update to modern.IE, including a new cross-browser Web site screenshot service and new virtual machine images.

Faster, More Responsive Browsing

Performance matters to everyone who browses the Web. We optimized the IE11 browsing engine for real-world sites to download and display fast and be highly responsive and interactive.

IE11 introduces new capabilities to improve real-world Web site performance. IE11 is the first browser to natively decode JPG images in real-time on the GPU, so pages load faster and use less memory, reducing power consumption and improving battery life. IE11 is also the first browser to render text on the GPU. Text and images are the heart of the Web, and accelerated text and JPG performance impacts nearly every page you see.

Loading Web pages faster means being smarter about fetching site content. IE11 is the first browser to implement the W3C Resource Priorities standard enabling developers to specify which parts of the page are important and need to be loaded first. IE11 also supports HTML5 link prefetching and pre-rendering, so developers can help the browser anticipate where you’ll go next and get those pages ready. On Windows 8.1, IE11 also supports the SPDY network protocol, the precursor to the HTTP 2.0 specification, enabling some sites to be downloaded faster.

You can experience IE11’s leading performance first hand with new demos on the IE Test Drive site with examples of real world Web site patterns for graphically rich, interactive, and 3D experiences such as Levitation and Lawnmark. You can test your browser’s layout and rendering performance with LiteBrite, the latest test drive demo which brings together the use of HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript.

Leading JavaScript Performance

Internet Explorer 11 advances the performance leadership of our JavaScript engine, Chakra, while ensuring compatibility, interoperability, and security. The JIT compiler now supports more optimizations including polymorphic caching of properties and inlining of function calls, so even more code is JIT’ed and less time is spent in JavaScript computation. Garbage collection now utilizes the background thread more efficiently, substantially reducing the frequency and amount of time the UI thread is blocked doing garbage collection.

IE11 also includes support for the well-defined and commonly used features of the emerging ECMAScript 6 standard. IE11 supports features including let, const, Map, Set, and WeakMap, as well as proto for improved interoperability. IE11 also supports the ECMAScript Internationalization API (version 1.0), which enables culture aware sorting, number formatting, date and time formatting to be performed efficiently in JavaScript without having to round-trip to the server.

As we improve performance for real-world sites, IE11’s JavaScript performance on benchmarks like WebKit SunSpider continues to lead compared with latest version of other browsers. On Windows 7, IE11 is 4% faster than IE10, and nearly 30% faster than the nearest competitive browser.

Hardware-Accelerated 3D Web Graphic

Internet Explorer 11 includes support for WebGL, an emerging Web technology that enables Web developers to create new kinds of advanced 2D and 3D experiences by programming the computer’s Graphics processing Unit (GPU). Once confined to enabling cool Web experiments, WebGL is now a vital component of the Web developers’ toolkit, as real-world sites are now using WebGL to create interactive visualization experiences in shopping, real estate, and social networking.

For example, GlacierWorks, a nonprofit dedicated to documenting and raising awareness about the effects of climate change on the Himalayan region, used WebGL to create a more interactive and engaging experience. WebGL fits right in alongside the stunning image and video content on this real-world site. The experience works on all devices. In fact, if you happen to be visiting the site from a tablet, you can take advantage of another new IE feature, CSS device orientation, to navigate the mountain by simply picking up your device.

Professional-Quality Video Experiences on the Web

Internet Explorer 11 enables high quality, power efficient HTML5 video without plugins. IE11 supports the latest standards for closed captioning (TTML and SDP)—so all your video content can be as good as the professionals. IE11 supports the HTML Full Screen API as well, making it simple to fill the screen during video playback. With WebCrypto support in IE11, Web sites can directly control how critical data is encrypted and exchanged. IE can now download video data without caching to disk, resulting in extended battery life when watching your favorite video.

On Windows 8.1, IE11 supports the latest media streaming standards, Media Source Extensions (MSE) and Encrypted Media Extensions (EME). Using MSE, IE automatically switches the bitrate of the video based on current network conditions, so your video experience is smooth and glitch-free. EME provides a standard interface for playing protected media content. You can experience these capabilities live at Netflix, or in our test drive demo.

A Better Web Today, and Ahead

The opportunities continue for HTML5 to make both Web sites and applications better. Those opportunities are exciting for everyone on the Web.

IE11 provides the best Web experience across the full range of Windows devices and screen sizes with mouse, keyboard, and especially touch. Try it out for yourself with the Windows 8.1 Preview, and if you are a Windows 7 user, download the IE11 Developer Preview today right frome here.