By Dan Kedmey
March 31, 2015

Microsoft’s radically redesigned web browser, Project Spartan, was released to the public in “preview mode” on Tuesday, giving users an early look at the successor to Internet Explorer.

“You will see a bold new design for Project Spartan,” Microsoft vice president Joe Belfiore wrote in a statement on Tuesday, “one that is streamlined and puts the focus on the page, not the browser.”

The browser includes built-in searches via Cortana, Microsoft’s digital assistant that can handle spoken commands like Siri or Google Now. It also includes an intriguing note-taking feature that enables the user to type or scribble directly onto a webpage. “Inking” could encourage users to take up the Surface tablet’s digital pen, which Microsoft is eager to promote as a more natural alternative to the keyboard.

The browser is currently available for download along with the latest build of Windows 10, which will be released as a free upgrade for Windows users this summer.

 

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