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Buh-bye IE6

It’s a very surreal day for me. You see as a web designer, I’ve been dreaming about this day for a few years. It’s official, from today onwards Creative World will no longer support IE6.

Haha – I get it, this is a joke right?

Nope. No one is laughing about it. No “April Fools” here, promise.  The joke is on IE6.

As a web designer, dropping support for IE6 has been on my mind for a long time.  My reasoning to drop IE6 comes from knowing that IE7 (released in October 2007) is now the most used IE browser but more-so from the recent release of IE8 – this will see IE6 fade out even further. I have also read many articles by industry leaders and companies like Google, 37 Signals and AppleME about them not supporting IE6 – when big guys like them talk you know it’s a sign that times are changing.

Real Talk: Statistically, Creative World and a selection of our clients sites show between 10% to 17% of visitors are still using the IE6 browser (statistic taken from all of March 2009). I would have preferred less than 5% but I’m ok with these percentages. At the end of the day, if I’m implementing fixes, hacks, workarounds, illogical layouts and invalid markup into websites we create – only for IE6 – it becomes immensely time consuming, and more so counter productive. To me that time spent on hacks could have been better spent improving design, improving code and improving the user experience for other more standard compliant browsers.

Sometimes I wonder if IE6 has stuck around because we continue to create sites to be compatible with it?

What does this mean for Creative World’s clients?

Your website will work in IE6 to the point that it is still usable. But full support will not be available. It will not be pixel perfect and we will not be writing any IE6 specific code. All work produced by Creative World (currently) supports IE7, FF3, Safari and Chrome browsers by default.

Related links on dropping IE6

I don’t want to rant about all the issues with IE6, there are plenty of sites that do that a lot better then I can:

Where do you stand?

I’d be keen to know what your position is on this topic: Are you planning to drop IE6? If so, when? Have you already? If so, how did it effect your clients, or your site visitors? Please post in the comments below.

Author | Leon Poole

Leon Poole is owner and founder of the Brisbane Web Design company Creative World. He has a passion for designing websites, solving problems and improving the user experience. You can follow me on Twitter or Google+.

5 Responses to Buh-bye IE6

  1. Kudos to you as developer/designers we need to stand up to those who make our lives miserable.
    A few weeks back I ran across a blog entry from devirtuoso.com (ya got ta love it) Contributing to the Death of IE6 http://snipr.com/oqeis as a result rather than going through the changes of trying to deal with IE6 I have been using it (and to my surprise according to the Google Analytics it is working)I have seen a major reduction in IE6 users on my sites since I started using it (can you say Nice kitty kitty)
    By the way just a quick note I have added your RSS feed to my site http://ldfeeds.com my followers and I am looking forward to hearing more from you.

  2. Wonderful. I was lying in bed last night wondering if I really should even worry about trying to get my clients sites to work in IE6. As you say takes up way to much time which could be so better spent elsewhere. So today I have also stopped support of IE6.

  3. You got my support! I got a plan to do that at the end of the year 2009, when Windows 7 will go to RTM state.

  4. ZeroCool says:

    You have my support. I wish someone would organize “drop IE6 day”, where in one day all web designers and coders, would put a big “if lt IE 7” warning and links to modern browser download pages. My stats (for Slovenia) show 25% of users still use IE6, therefore I can’t join you at this time, as some of my customers are large retail online stores :(

  5. “Sometimes I wonder if IE6 has stuck around because we continue to create sites to be compatible with it?” I think that’s a large part of the issue, and the sooner support is dropped for IE6 the sooner people will upgrade, or seek out an alternative browser all together.

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