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Microsoft's Project Spartan browser to replace IE in Windows 10

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Project Spartan
(Image credit: TechCrunch)

Microsoft has unveiled its brand new Project Spartan web browser at the Windows 10 event on its Redmond campus today.

As rumoured in recent weeks, the browser will replace Internet Explorer when Windows 10 begins shipping to consumers later this year.

Project Spartan, as it is currently codenamed. brings a brand new lightweight design and user interface, including a brand new darker theme. Tabs sit on top of the address bar, with each featuring a small thumbnail of the open site.

Users will also be able to annotate browser pages with a stylus in order to share them with others, something else which was also heavily tipped leading into the event.

As expected, Cortana is also along for the ride in the form of a digital assistant that will pop up invariably to supplement information the user is browsing for.

In this iteration, if you’re searching for a restaurant, Cortana will pop up with useful information like directions from your current location and the establishment’s menu. It’ll also become knowledgable about your appointments through integration with other apps, meaning you'll get timely updates on stuff like upcoming flights.

There’s also a Safari-like Reading List feature which will allow users to earmark pages and pick them up on other devices, while the Offline Mode will make it possible to read them without internet connectivity. It has also got a built-in PDF reader, which is a long overdue feature for Windows users.

Read more: Windows 10 to be a free upgrade for the first year

Unfortunately for those desperate to give Project Spartan a shot (no word on the official name yet), it won’t be part of the first Windows 10 Consumer Preview build, which suggests it’s still very much a work in progress.

Microsoft says it’ll come to PCs first, before it eventually arrives on the Windows Phone (soon to become Windows 10) platform.

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