officially announced, big update for Windows Mobile will be - as Microsoft
calls it - "6 on 6", which is
Internet Explorer Mobile 6 on
Windows Mobile 6.1. The
current Internet Explorer Mobile code, as it is used for today's Windows Mobile
devices and smartphones, is based on the pretty much outdated
Internet Explorer 4.x, which was initially released back in September, 1997!
The time of Windows 95 and Windows NT 4, when the World Wide Web was pretty
young. So no question, it is time for an update! And while some called 6 on 6
vaporware already, even if Microsoft's Andy Lees confirmed its upcoming release
earlier interview, you can see bellow that it exists indeed as the the
screenshots we recently received proves.
Internet Explorer Mobile 6 provides two different compatibility options -
Mobile and Desktop:
And while the Mobile mode identifies it as "[Device Name] (compatible; MSIE
6.0; Windows CE; IEMobile 8.12; MSIEMobile 6.0)", the Desktop mode identifies it
as "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1)":
So far the theory. In reality you can see the difference if you visit
the::unwired which works with browser sniffing to serve the appropriate layout.
On the left, the::unwired in Mobile mode, on the right in Desktop mode and as
you can see, the Desktop mode looks quite similar to the::unwired on your PC:
So far so good. But some things irritates me: Why does the
scrollbars on the right and bottom look like Windows 95 or Windows CE? That's
not the "fresh" Windows Mobile 6.1 style. Also I haven't seen a single
indication of "tabbed browsing" which means Internet Explorer Mobile 6 might
still offers a single instance for Web browsing only.
Anyway, as soon as I have access to a Windows 6 on 6 upgraded device, I will
follow-up with a hands-on review.
Cheers ~ Arne