Greg sent me a note pointing to a Think Secret article that suggests two things – that IE6 for the Mac has been delayed on purpose, and it has been delayed in order to ship MSN Explorer (is that the proper name?) instead.
Sources say IE 6's rendering engine was finished months ago. According to one source, the MacBU has been working on the browser for some time, and was able to develop a quality, Mac OS X-only browser. In beta versions, performance was acceptable and IE 6 took advantage of OS X technology like customizable toolbars, sheets, anti-aliasing, and even some Quartz effects like those in Office v.X.
My view: now that IE no longer automatically gets placed on Macs as the default browser, they actually have to compete to get people to pick it on the Mac, over other choices such as Mozilla/Chimera or Safari.
This is the same thing that the people at Opera are complaining over – their argument being that since Apple has their own, high-quality browser, it’s unfair. Dave Hyatt’s blog pointed me towards John Gruber’s thoughts on Opera:
Is it any wonder why Opera for Mac isn?t popular, and Safari is? The Wintel technology press might think it is normal for Mac software to be a second thought, but Mac users have every right to be turned off by companies with Windows-first development priorities.
Every platform ships with a default browser. Apple, like all other companies, has the right (the need?) to make sure it’s a good one.