So You’re Looking to Drop IE11 Support
When it comes to developing modern web applications, Internet Explorer has long been a thorn to developers. Countless hours have been spent over the last decade within larger corporations discussing whether Internet Explorer n support can be finally dropped. If like me, you have been in these meetings and are always on the lookout for that next tidbit of info that might push the discussion to completion, this post is for you.
First and foremost – as you’ve likely heard, last month Microsoft officially announced their IE11 retire date as June 15, 2022! More details are available on their blog post: “The future of Internet Explorer on Windows 10 is in Microsoft Edge”.
While having that official date is huge, some people that still support IE11 might dread the idea of management dictating that one more full year of support is required by them as well. But, there’s still more information for your case! While Microsoft is supporting IE11 software for another year, that doesn’t mean their applications are – Teams dropped support last November, and Office 365 will be dropping support this coming August 2021
Pushing the needle even further, Internet Explorer support is on its way out with popular frontend frameworks and tools. A small sample of recent support removal announcements:
Angular – RFC: Internet Explorer 11 support deprecation and removal
IE11 support will be deprecated in v Angular v12 (to be released in May 2021 and supported through November 2022), and IE11 support removal will occur in Angular v13 (late 2021)
Vue – Vue 3 IE11 Support RFCS
Drop IE11 support plan for Vue 3.
WordPress – Dropping support for Internet Explorer 11
When WordPress 5.8 is released in July of this year, Internet Explorer 11 will no longer be supported.
So you have buy-in — now what about the users?
Once you finally get the buy-in to drop support, be sure you have a plan to notify and assist your users with the transition. While graceful degradation can be a powerful approach, most applications would benefit from dropping IE11 entirely. A recommended approach to dropping support might look like the following:
- Begin targeting IE11 users with a banner or model notifying them of the support drop. This can be built in-house to maintain complete control over UI, messaging, and suggested browsers, or external tools like Browser Update can be used.
- Consider – once the support deadline passes, should IE11 users be blocked from using the website entirely, or allow them to use the website in an unsupported (and likely broken) manner.
- As the support end date arrives, have your website added to Microsoft’s “Need Microsoft Edge” list. This will allow Windows to automatically redirect any remaining IE11 users to your website in their Edge install. More information available at “Moving users to Microsoft Edge from Internet Explorer”.
If you are looking to advocate for dropping IE11 support in your organization, I hope you have found some of these resources helpful!
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