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Microsoft is conducting a serious overhaul on the web browser for it’s upcoming Windows 10. Code named Spartan, precious little was known about the browser’s features, until now that is. Neowin.com announced yesterday that it was sent leaked images of the new browser, allowing us to piece together a little more information.
Right off the bat, the design has clearly deviated from standard Internet Explorer aesthetics, and is more in line with Google’s Chrome now. Standard browser tabs sit above the search bar, albeit with more rounded edges now, and minimalistic forward, back, and refresh buttons to the side. On the right end of the search bar is a “star to favourite” button, and a “reading mode” button, that strips away multimedia in the page, leaving only the text for easier reading.
The leaked photos of Spartan’s look Images credit: Neowin.com
To the right of the search bar are three buttons for folder access, sharing, and a triple dot icon to access the browser menu, similar to Microsoft’s menu access for Windows Phone OS.
One of the features supposedly included is an annotation feature, that allows the user to make notes on a web page and share it with a friend. This is powered by Microsoft’s OneDrive, indicating their push to standardise their cloud storage and sharing across devices. And once shared, multiple users can make notes on the same copy, similar to Google Docs.
Microsoft’s digital helper and Siri’s counterpart, Cortana, is also a major part of the new Spartan browser. Although not yet visible in the screenshots released, the functionality is expected to be a trigger icon in the header. Cortana is also expected to replace all forms of Bing search in the browser.
Neowin’s reconstruction of the browser, based off the leaked photos
The design leaning towards a Chrome look is not very surprising, considering Spartan is being built to look and feel similar across all of Microsoft’s upcoming devices.
And while Spartan is what the new browser is being called, it’s only a code name so far, and it’s as yet unknown if it will be officially branded according to Internet Explorer tradition. We’ll have to wait and see what other news Microsoft reveals at their press conference on January 31.