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It sounds as if Internet Explorer’s days are numbered: details of a new web browser coming out of Microsoft have leaked on the web, and from what we’ve heard, this new browser is going to be pretty awesome. A post on The Verge today has the details – and I can’t wait to experience the web browsing equivalent of kicking a guy into a well.

According to the new report, Spartan will feature a new “inking” feature when it’s running on next year’s Windows 10 OS. That means that users who have stylus support will have the ability to write and annotate webpages as they browse, all of which will be supported by Microsoft’s OneNote cloud storage. As such, users can invite others to share and also annotate themselves – a great feature for those who do work on the web, or simply those who like to read and comment on content via their web browsers. In fact, this is such a smart idea it’s kind of remarkable that it’s never been offered before.

The post also says that Cortana will be included in Spartan, which will help connect users with “information on flights, hotel bookings, package tracking, and other data.” The post explains that Cortana can be used to track particular flights, and that if a user searches for “American Airlines” in the browser bar, they’ll see other tracked flights and status updates. That’s a page straight out of Google’s playbook with Google Now, and if Microsoft can pull this off effectively, it should be sure to win over plenty of skeptics.

Between these two big features and the other ones the post offers details about (like being able to group tabs however you like while browsing), Spartan sounds like a winner. Of course, seeing is believing, and until I get to test-drive the new browser, I’ll probably stick with Chrome for a while longer yet. But now I’m even more stoked about the consumer release of Windows 10 this year than I was when I first downloaded the Technical Preview.

Could Windows 10 and Spartan finally be the products we’ve been waiting for? Was former CEO Steve Ballmer the one holding everyone back in the end?

[Source: The Verge]

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