Google Apps to drop IE8 support in October

Two and a half years ago, Google stopped supporting Internet Explorer 6, and web developers everywhere breathed a sigh of relief. They, too, were soon able to justify dropping support for the browser and its rather… unique interpretation of web standards.

Well, now it seems Internet Explorer 8 is next on the chopping blockā€”despite being much better-behaved as far as standards support goes. The latest post on the official Google Apps blog states curtly:

Internet Explorer 10 launches on 10/26/2012, and as a result, we will discontinue support for Internet Explorer 8 shortly afterwards, on 11/15/2012. After this date users accessing Google Apps services using Internet Explorer 8 will see a message recommending that they upgrade their browser.

The Google Apps suite includes Gmail, Google Docs, Google Calendar, Google Drive, so it sounds like a lot of folks are going to be seeing that message come October.

According to the latest statistics from Net Applications, Internet Explorer 8 is the most popular single browser version on the web right now, with a 25.27% usage share. IE9 is second with 18.4%, followed by Chrome 21 and Firefox 14 with 14.5% and 12.7% usage shares, respectively. Getting a quarter of all web users to upgrade their browser may not be easy, but if anyone’s going to do it, Google likely has a pretty good shot.

Comments closed
    • brucethemoose
    • 7 years ago

    Chrome frame is the solution here.

    IE8 + Chrome when you need it. This will probably be what businesses will default to, if word gets round.

      • superjawes
      • 7 years ago

      I would go the other way. Firefox with IE tab or an equivalent in Chrome (I assume there is one).

      Then you can build/use security plugins to protect your browsers as needed, and still have the functionality for pages still exclusive to IE.

    • ltcommander.data
    • 7 years ago

    I know they are just following their stated 2 latest version policy, but sometimes exceptions should be made for reality, ie. that cutting off the world’s most used browser accounting for a quarter of all internet traffic isn’t a good idea. Wasn’t Google trying to push Google Apps as a viable alternative to Office and other Microsoft products for corporations and governments? Seeing IE8 usage is supposed to be highest in corporations and governments, I don’t think this move is going to help their cause. Supporting the 2 latest version of each major browser + a third browser version if it has say 10% or greater usage share seems to better meet consumer usage patterns without ballooning support for too many browsers.

    • PrincipalSkinner
    • 7 years ago

    Dump that rubbish browser ASAP. Developing for it is a pain in the buttocks.

    • Meadows
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]"Two and a half years ago, Google stopped supporting Internet Explorer 6"[/quote<] Wow, it was that long ago? Time does fly.

    • yogibbear
    • 7 years ago

    *Checks Home PC to see what version of IE I’m on*

    *Realises windows update has been keeping me up to date since forever*

    *Checks work lappy*…. Realises is out of date……… Tries to upgrade…. NO ADMIN RIGHTS! BE DAMNED!

    • Madman
    • 7 years ago

    As long as they offer a warning screen with FF, Opera and not only Chrome, I call it a progress.

    It would even be a jump forward if IE9/10 was completely absent from that screen.

    • lilbuddhaman
    • 7 years ago

    And now introducing Google Apps Plus (Plus!)* integrated with IE10***!

    *Please note that starting March 2013 you will be required to sign up for GApps++ to have access to documents you created ( which we actually own btw, check the ToS )

    **At the low fee of $5.99 a month

    ***Starting Jan 2013 you will be required to use IE10 to access GApps

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    And nothing of value was lost.

    • highlandr
    • 7 years ago

    Why is this news? I already get a message telling me to update my browser when using Docs/Drive in IE8. I guess Google’s attitude will shift from “you should upgrade your browser” to “we don’t care if your browser works or not.”

      • willmore
      • 7 years ago

      Exactly, they’re not promising to break it, they’re just not promising to support it.

    • superjawes
    • 7 years ago

    Somehow I don’t think this would be a big deal if IE wasn’t so clunky…Chrome and Firefox seem to function very well supporting multiple updates without breaking everything.

    • Sahrin
    • 7 years ago

    ZOMG IE sucks rite guise can I have upboats?

      • superjawes
      • 7 years ago

      No.

    • SoM
    • 7 years ago

    ppl still use that IE crap ?

      • From40zto5thz
      • 7 years ago

      Unfortunately most corporations are still using Windows XP and you can not install IE9 on XP. Users have to be on Windows 7 or Vista to use a newer Microsoft browser. So basically Google is pushing XP users to more standards compliant browsers. Maybe Opera will get more users as a result.

        • superjawes
        • 7 years ago

        I think a fair number of corporations have made at least a partial transistion to 7, but yes, there are plenty of XP business machines still in operation.

        And on top of that, I think there’s a general “IE is Windows so we make all web apps use IE” mentaility that prevents anyone from even trying to make Chrome or Firefox compatible.

          • huge
          • 7 years ago

          Still on XP and ie8 here at my company. šŸ™

            • kvndoom
            • 7 years ago

            Ugh, IE7 at my job. IE6 with tabs. Joy.

            Fortunately, I do believe the Windows 7 rollout begins next year though. Maybe by 2025 we will be using Windows 9.

      • Sargent Duck
      • 7 years ago

      Me.

      • ClickClick5
      • 7 years ago

      I do.

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