Latest IE 9 Platform Preview plays H.264 video via HTML5

If you had any remaining doubts about Microsoft’s intent to support HTML5 video, prepare to cast those aside. The company has released a third Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview that puts support for H.264 video via HTML5 front and center.

Too bad you can’t go full-screen.

The screenshot above is from the IMDb Video Panorama demo, in which users can zoom between video thumbnails and click them to play full trailers. The demo also works in Google Chrome, although it’s considerably smoother in IE9 thanks to that browser’s Windows-specific hardware acceleration.

Other goodies in the new IE9 Platform Preview include support for MP3 and AAC audio, web fonts, some additional CSS3 features, and much more. Microsoft addresses WebM in the release notes, too, saying compatibility with Google’s new video format is "not included in this release."

Comments closed
    • HisDivineShadow
    • 12 years ago

    IE is usually “modern” when its released. That the ALPHA is still improving is no surprise. That the ALPHA will incorporate new features is not a surprise. If IE 9 releases and is updated to continue including new features on a far more regular basis than previous versions, then THAT will be a surprise. As it is, Chrome, Opera, and Firefox are all updated rapidly.

    If MS should learn anything from its competition, it should be that it needs to have a more aggressive update cycle for IE9 for consumers (not corporate). IE9 can come out as the slickest browser ever, but whatever advantages it has won’t last if MS doesn’t keep the changes coming.

    • Meadows
    • 12 years ago

    …and Firefox? It’s the favourite of this particular developer I mentioned. Sure enough, his site code works without as much as a hitch in Firefox, while he has unidentified (and therefore tough to fix) sync/update issues with Opera that does weird stuff. For example, it can randomly take up to 10 seconds *[

    • Jigar
    • 12 years ago

    There is more to life than than… Go outside, you can hock up with some one worth while.

    • UberGerbil
    • 12 years ago

    It is funny that all we ever heard about a couple of years ago was “Acid!” and how much IE sucked at it. Then as soon as IE was doing well on the test, well, suddenly “Acid doesn’t mater!”

    • indeego
    • 12 years ago

    I don’t use IE that often, but about 1/3 of the time I do Smartscreen isn’t available (perhaps because I use it mostly intranet/https?)

    I would think UAC/protected mode+user account would be far better features to tout. Go with the assumption that all modern browsers have security holes, because they all dog{<.<}g

    • Veerappan
    • 12 years ago

    Some people might dislike writing for Opera, but I find that it is the most compatible/enjoyable browser I’ve tried to develop for.

    If I want to write a new feature for the web services I’m working on, the first browser it will work in is Opera, and then I just have to figure out how to get around the bugs in other browsers (Safari/Chrome and IE usually).

    • cygnus1
    • 12 years ago

    Damn… You just made my head esplode. I don’t know who I’d pick between those two…

    Sarah Chalke is hot, but not quite as hot, but has way better personality…

    • EsotericLord
    • 12 years ago

    I care about security more than speed.

    IE8 is my browser of choice because of its far superior security features. Hopefully IE9 continues to evolve on MS’s SmartScreen tech.

    • 5150
    • 12 years ago

    She’s no Sarah Chalke.

    • flip-mode
    • 12 years ago

    Speed is not everything.

    Is IE9 fully and completely CSS and JS standards compliant?

    If not, let it rot and I don’t care how flicking fast it is.

    • BenBasson
    • 12 years ago

    The Acid tests aren’t really for developers at all, they’re good for generating PR and getting browser vendors to implement technologies, which is what they seem to be accomplishing.

    From a development point of view – they’re not representative tests indicating “good” or “bad” support of any given standard, they’re a mix of standard code and edge-cases designed specifically to show up inconsistencies and areas that various browsers were known to be lacking. Crucially, it’s testing for cases combining a whole list of technologies, some of which are wholly new.

    Solving the individual test-cases does lead to better standards support (i.e. more web features) overall, but it’s not like having a higher score necessarily translates into a browser being better. Even if all browsers pass Acid2 and Acid3, they could still have some glaring inconsistencies, bugs or lack of support in areas that make us shake our fists at the sky in anger.

    • Machupo
    • 12 years ago

    I would zoom that screenshot into my pants

    • ApockofFork
    • 12 years ago

    That depends on the browser and its implementation of html 5 video. IE9 is supposed to be using hardware acceleration for a number of things so I imagine it would also use it for video.

    • Coulda
    • 12 years ago

    Does HTML5 video use GPU to decode H.264 like Flash?

    • Farting Bob
    • 12 years ago

    Everything smokes Safari on windows, its not a leading browser in terms of features or speed by any stretch.

    • ew
    • 12 years ago

    Standards aren’t for users they are for developers.

    • rrode74
    • 12 years ago

    IE9 looks like the browser to have if you are on Windows. Its smokes both Chrome and Safari in those tests, even the Safari tests.

    Nice update.

    • herothezero
    • 12 years ago


    • Sargent Duck
    • 12 years ago


    • Arag0n
    • 12 years ago

    I agree that a good benchmark it’s not all that a browser needs. But a browser that it’s far beyond the others on benchmarks means that has very large room for improvement.

    Anyways, Microsoft has never been known to release high quality browsers since beated netscape with ie5…. ie6 was a “good release” for it’s time, but they needed almost 10 years to develop something really improved and not minor improvements.

    they should have added a directx rendered mode for almost every aplication on windows since they released the directx api… they should have developed a developer friendly sdk for directx 2d api’s for windows aplications and more…

    They have all the keys and pieces to develop an amazin expirience but seems that they are just sitting for the last 10 years…

    Don’t think that I’m a MS hater because I liked some of their new products so much and I belive so much on some of the things they do, but they seems to be a cheese. They have so many holes that they could avoid and they seem just ok with the hole.

    • WillBach
    • 12 years ago

    Scarlett Johansson was great in Iron Man II. That is all.

    • Meadows
    • 12 years ago

    I browse websites, not benchmarks. Passing the Acid3 test doesn’t make for a compelling browser. Look at Opera for example, it’s fast and compliant on paper, but has a number of quirks and bugs and I know a web developer who hates writing code for it.

    • Arag0n
    • 12 years ago

    And they seems to have raised again in the Aci3 test from 68 to 83. Seems that finally internet explorer will be a modern browser… I hope they stay working in the performance issues arround javascript like they seems to have done and improving the browser compatibility with standarts.

    It’s the first time in long that I see microsoft working good and not just implementing some good ideas.

    • Helmore
    • 12 years ago

    Another major feature that got added: Canvas support.

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