Since its availability on March 14th, IE9 has been available for manual download and we are pleased by the early and continued enthusiasm for IE9. We are seeing not only strong customer and business demand, but some of the highest web and application compatibility rates in IE history, not to mention all the sites that are taking advantage of HTML5 and IE9’s Windows 7 integration. On March 28th, we began to upgrade existing IE9 Beta and RC users through Windows Update.
On April 18th, a little over a month after the final release of IE9, we will be ready to start the rollout of IE9 to our Windows 7 and Windows Vista customers. We will offer IE9 to customers via a gradual rollout and expect the rollout to be largely complete by the end of June. Similar to our approach for IE8, we will use Windows Update to deliver IE9 to users. IE 9 will not install automatically on machines. Users will have to agree to install IE 9.
For our business customers who require time to plan and test their deployments, we will make IE9 available on Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) in June. WSUS allows use of management tools that make it easy for IT professionals to deploy IE9 in their environments in an automated fashion and at their own pace. We would also like to remind our business customers who do not rely on WSUS they have the option to use the IE9 Blocker Toolkit to prevent IE9 rollout via Windows Update until they are ready.
IE9 in Japan: Our sympathies go out to those affected by the continued earthquakes in Japan. We intentionally delayed the availability of the final Japanese language version of IE9 in an effort to avoid any burden to the local internet infrastructure. The Japanese language version of IE9 will be released on April 25th, and Windows Update will be enabled for Japan at a later date.
Director, Internet Explorer Marketing