Microsoft is preparing to unveil the latest version of its browser, Internet Explorer 8 (IE8), at its annual MIX conference in Las Vegas next week.
The software giant has already asked its software-testing community to participate in beta trials for IE8, which is expected to more fully comply with World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards.
A public beta will follow once the invitation-only test is complete. This should be in the summer, according to experienced Microsoft watchers.
IE8 will replace Internet Explorer 7.0, which was introduced in October 2006, but came in for some stick for its level of W3C compatibility (or lack thereof).
W3C attempts to ensure cross-browser and -platform interoperability. Rival browsers such as Mozilla's Firefox already comply with W3C standards.
An official launch date for IE8 has not been announced, although reports suggest it will come towards the end of 2008.