So what might we have here?
Yes, the headline says it all - but where's the fun in that? Ok, too many rhetorical questions. Let's break these up into two categories: 'I'd buy that for a dollar' and 'Hmmmn colour me skeptical'.
I'd buy that for a dollar
Actually, since we're talking about mobile Internet Explorer I have to say I'm not sure about that (Opera mobile browsers are free after all) but nevertheless the MSDN blog has quietly announced the 'cool features' which will come with IE Mobile 6 and I have to admit, nasty OS layout aside, they aren't half bad:
- Improved fidelity (support for full fidelity desktop rendering)
- Layout fixes to accommodate a mobile screen (text wrap)
- Enhanced Script and AJAX support (Jscript v5.7 from Internet Explorer 8)
- Improved multimedia experience (Adobe Flash Lite 3.1 for Adobe Flash content)
- Deeper integration with search
- Enhanced cursor navigation model
- Touch and gesture support - pan support
- Multiple zoom levels
- Easy switching between mobile / desktop versions of sites by specifying UA strings
Hmmmn colour me skeptical
According to Smartphone France, this is what the Ballmer bleated Windows Mobile 6.5 will look like, or at least its home screen and app selection menu.
Personally, I'm not convinced in the slightest. The icon's don't seem particularly Vista-ry (and you'd think Microsoft would be looking for a closer tie-in) while the rip-off homage to the Zune's UI seems just too blatant to be true, even if I believe the future of the Zune lies as an integrated component of Windows Mobile - think N-Gage verses N-Gage 2.0).
Nope. Not biting...
I'm guessing a lot will out at February's Mobile World Congress - you mark my words.
MSDN IE Mobile 6 Blog Post
IE Mobile 6 Emulator Images
Smartphone France (Translated)