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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Microsoft's Project Spartan will replace Internet Explorer on Windows 10


Project Spartan for Windows 10

As part of Windows 10, Microsoft is building an all-new web browser, currently codenamed Project Spartan. This browser promises to deliver an improved web browsing experience over Internet Explorer and allows you to write directly on web pages from your PC, read articles distraction-free and save your favorites to read offline later.

We have been hearing rumors, and seeing leaked screenshots of Project Spartan over the past few months. However Microsoft chose to make their upcoming web browser official at today's 'Windows 10: The Next Chapter' event.

Spartan, like Cortana borrows its name from the Halo franchise. While its not known if Spartan will fully replace Internet Explorer or work side-by-side with it, its still great to see Microsoft respond to the growing popularity of its competitors, Google Chrome and Firefox.

Spartan will feature a brand new rendering engine and come with a fresh new look. The browser has been built from ground up to complete the simple, flat, modern look of Windows 10 and its new universal applications.

While the new web browser is expected to come with several enhancements, it will feature the following three main features:

Cortana integration with instant results

Microsoft's digital smart assistant Cortana will be a part of Project Spartan. Cortana will get to work as soon as you start typing - Just start typing weather and you'd be able to see the weather forecast midword. Type 'Delta' and you'd get info about your upcoming Delta Airlines flight without the need for an actual search. It looks like Microsoft has taken a page out of Google's custom search and we are not complaining. Cortana even pops up to show you more info about places: directions, contacts, restaurant menus and more.

Note-taking

Ever wanted to annotate and share a webpage you are viewing? You can with Spartan on Windows 10. Best of all, you don't need a pen to do this - you can just jot down notes and draw on the screen with your fingers. Spartan even allows you to add comments as you would on Microsoft Word. All of this doodling gets saved and can be easily synced with OneNote, and shared with others.

Reading mode

Most good browsers nowadays have some form of a reading mode that formats out all but the article you're reading so you can focus easier on what’s important. Microsoft, however, has gone one step further and brings a reading list like what you have in apps like Pocket. That list syncs across phone and tablet, keeping a neat cabinet of all your yet-to-be read pages.

Spartan features on Windows 10

Spartan on Windows 10 for phones

Spartan line most of the apps on Windows 10 will be a universal app. It will share the same underlying code and even the same UI elements across PCs, tablets and phones. Microsoft has now given us an early glimpse of what Spartan will look like on Windows 10 for phones.

Spartan on Windows 10 for phones

Microsoft is not quite ready to share Spartan with the public, and it won't be ready in time for the next public preview release of Windows 10. In any case we expect Microsoft will continue to enhance Spartan as the official release of Windows 10 grows closer.

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