Image via WikipediaThis morning, while taking a look at our product backlog, we came to the realisation that many 'defects' relate specifically to Internet Explorer 6.0. Fixing those defects has a cost. Not fixing them also has a cost. It's fairly easy to calculate the cost of the former but the latter can only be a finger-in-the-air estimate based on what percentage of users are using IE6 when visiting the site, as well as related metrics such as the rate of growth of those users as a proportion of overall users, the 'loyalty' of the visitors and so on.
Just over 50% of our visits are from Internet Explorer users. Of those, 65% are on IE8 and only 10% on IE6. So only 5% of our visits are with IE6 browsers. It's also evident that month on month, the proportion of IE6 visits is shrinking, albeit only very slightly. What we have seen, however, is that IE7 is fast being replaced, most likely with IE8.
So we've made a decision with regards to the IE6-related 'defects'. While we won't be deleting them from the backlog, we've given them the lowest priority rating. The cost of fixing experience issues related to one browser does not stack up against the opportunity of improving the experience for people using all other browsers. That means we're unlikely ever to develop fixes for these problems but we're acknowledging that they exist.
If you are an IE6 user, please upgrade to a better, faster, more secure browser. Your browser was released in 2001, when the Internet was still a toddler. It's now a teenager and needs a new set of clothes. You can still choose Internet Explorer (if you must) but get a size 8.0: you'll find it fits better. Or try Firefox, Chrome, Safari or Opera. Your experience of the Internet will be much improved.