23rd September 2020

The end is nigh... for Internet Explorer 11

Andrew Halloway

Andrew Halloway Designer & Front-end Developer

@shmalloway

We've supported IE11 for longer than possibly any other digital agency. But now, as Micrososft retires it, we're moving on too.

17th August 2021. Mark that date in your diaries. It’s when Internet Explorer 11 will finally go to the great big browser graveyard in the sky.

With the announcement that Microsoft will no longer optimise its own programs to function on the legacy browser, it seems that Internet Explorer 11’s (IE11) long tenure as the browser people love to hate has finally come to an end.

We’ve been considering dropping support for IE11 on new projects for some time, so now seems like a good time to officially announce that we will no longer be supporting IE11 as standard on our new builds.

You might wonder why we’ve even continued to support it this long. After all, Microsoft’s Edge browser became accessible and widely used in 2015, and industry support for IE11 has been steadily dwindling ever since. 

As an agency that specialises in building websites for ethical organisations, charities and non-profits, it is important to us that our client’s digital products can be accessed as widely as possible. We always ensure their budget is maximised to gain the most impact they possibly can from our partnership.

With every fixed budget project, there is always a trade-off. For a long time it made sense to allocate part of the budget to supporting Internet Explorer 11, as it was still a browser that was used by many people, including some who lacked easy access to more modern technology. The NHS, for example, was a famous IE hold-out, so it was a must for clients like Lymphoma Action

The new features implemented by other browsers have changed things, however. We now believe that the time required to support Internet Explorer 11 no longer results in the largest number of people benefitting from the sites we build. 

The number of people using IE11 has shrunk, and the time required to make it function properly has increased. Supporting IE11 is no longer cost-effective for the charities and ethical organisations we work with.

To maximise our clients’ budgets, we will now allocate more project time making sure our sites work on the ever-growing number of screen sizes being used. This means we can spend more time striving to make our websites as accessible as they can be

We will continue to support sites built before this change, ensuring there are no major changes for our existing clients. We will also support any new projects that require legacy browser support, but we won’t include it as standard.

So long Internet Explorer 11, it was great while it lasted.

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