Microsoft plans to include a new web browser with Windows 10 when the operating system launches this summer. Code-named Project Spartan, it uses a different rendering engine than Internet Explorer, has a user interface designed to work across phones, tablets, and desktops, and includes better support for web standards thanks, in part, to involvement of third-party companies such as Adobe in the development process.

Microsoft has talked a lot about Project Spartan over the past few months, but the company hasn’t let you actually try it out… until now.

spartan web note

The latest Windows 10 Technical Preview (build 10049) includes a build of the web browser.

Internet Explorer is still there if you want to use it. Microsoft won’t be killing off its legacy web browser for a while so that enterprise users and others that rely on applications that may not work properly with Spartan (or Firefox, Chrome, Opera, etc) can still rely on it for a while longer. But Spartan (or whatever it’ll be called once the code-name is replaced with a real name) is clearly the browser Microsoft is focusing on for Windows 10.

Among other things, the browser includes:

  • Built-in support for the Cortana personal voice assistant
  • Support for jotting notes including comments, questions, or annotations on website and sharing “Web Notes” with other users (you can use a digital pen for hand-written notes)
  • Reading List and Reading View options for saving articles for later, distraction-free reading, and saving pages as PDF files
  • A simpler user interface with a smaller toolbar

The new web browser is the primary new feature in Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 10049. Most of the other changes include bug fixes.

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6 replies on “Project Spartan browser arrives in latest Windows 10 preview build”

  1. Last I checked, one had to be using a Microsoft account to use Cortana, using a Local account would deactivate the feature. I wonder if this will still be the case or if Cortana integration with Project Spartan will work even on Local accounts. This has been far and away my biggest gripe with Windows8/10, them trying to force you into using a Microsoft account as your primary Windows account.

  2. If they don’t fix all the Bugs first then MS should rename it Project Spaghetti. 😀

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  3. Hopefully, this will precipitate the demise of the “major versions” of Internet Explorer, and they’ll be using the same update model as Chrome and Firefox with Spartan. It will certainly help speed up web development.

  4. Microsoft finally appears to understand that the uri bar properly lives *inside* the tab, not above it or beside it. It will be interesting to see how their “web notes” feature differs from Vivaldi’s notes feature.

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