Now, before we get to the tenth item on this list, here are a few honorable mentions. The first is Lazy Loading. This is a new feature to help speed up the initial loading of your website.
Instead of loading all of the images all at once, images that are off-screen can be loaded later. You can use the “loading” attribute, with a value of “lazy”, to specify which images don’t need to be loaded right away.
The only reason this feature didn’t make the main list is because of Safari. In that browser, on both iOS and macOS, it’s still an experimental feature.
As for the last honorable mention feature, that’s SVG Favicons. A Favicon is an iconic representation of your website. Originally, they were very tiny — only 16×16 pixels. You can barely see it on a 4K display. But now, there are so many different sizes. That’s why the ability to use a vector shape can be very useful. But sadly, the support is not quite there yet.
That leaves you with a tough decision. What’s your tolerance for support? Does a feature need 90% of acceptance before you use it? That’s still one out of every ten visitors missing out.
Is it 99%? Are you comfortable with 1% of your website visitors missing out on a feature? If so, then it’s important to know that Internet Explorer has less than 1% of usage worldwide. As of July 2021, it’s at 0.57% and falling.
If it takes double the work and expense to support Internet Explorer, does it justify supporting that 1% of website visitors? And as you can see by the features on this list, it can actually be much more work that that. What’s the Internet Explorer alternative for dynamic filter effects, CSS Variables, or CSS Math Functions? That’s why double can actually be a conservative estimate.
So are you convinced? Are you ready to drop support for Internet Explorer? If not, maybe the tenth and final item on this list might convince you.
Media Query Prefers Color Scheme
Some of you might be wondering, “What’s that?” Well, there is an easier way to describe it… Dark Mode!
This is one of those features where luxury becomes necessity. I do some of my best work when it’s late at night. And when I work late, I don’t want my monitor glaring at me like it was the noontime sun. Now like I was saying before, you could hack a nighttime theme into a website for Internet Explorer. But wow, that’s going to be a lot more work than simply adding some additional CSS.
With less than 100 lines of CSS, the popular WordPress Theme “Twenty-Sixteen” was given a Dark Mode appearance. Internet Explorer users are missing out.
But the real point of this article is not to gloat over the demise of Internet Explorer. Instead, it’s more about you thinking about what you can do next with your website. Aside from Dark Mode and Lazy Loading, and before this this article was written, none of these cool new features were used at Photics.com.
What about your website? Are you using any of these new features? If not, why not?! The excuse of supporting Internet Explorer is going away. This is our opportunity as website creators to bring back the fun to the Internet. There are many other features that are not supported by Internet Explorer. See caniuse.com for a list of new features.
You could also subscribe to Photics.TV, as the Web Design & Web Development playlist is just getting started. Photics.com & Photics.TV are great resources to learn more about making websites and enjoying technology. Together we can make the Internet even better.