GMail Shuns IE

Whoa – discovered by accident tonight that GMail’s browser requirements for the Mac specify Safari, Firefox, and the Mozilla variants. Try to visit the site with Internet Explorer/Mac and you get a warning:

Gmail does not currently support your browser.

However it does let you try to sign in anway. Do so, and you get another message:

Your browser seems to be Internet Explorer, and ActiveX seems to be disabled. Gmail requires ActiveX to be enabled in order to operate.

Obviously it doesn’t require ActiveX, since it works just fine with Safari and the Mozilla cousins. So is this a case of identity crisis, or of Google make subtle stabs at MS in preparation for the coming Viking battle? Probably none of the above – they just decided not to support a dying browser on the Mac, but didn’t implement their non-support very well. Still, it’s nice to see the shoe on the other foot for a change, even if in an insignificant way.

Music: Gong :: I Niver Glid Before

2 Replies to “GMail Shuns IE”

  1. Oddly enough, we’re running into a similar issue – in recoding the crufty table-ridden templates given to us by the design firm “rebranding” our College- we discovered certain strange artifacts that only appeared in IE/Mac.

    Add another workaround to the CSS, or let it slide?

    Checked the logs, and found only a miniscule sub-percentage of IE/Mac visitors. The artifact was cosmetic, not content-preventing.

    We’re letting it slide.

  2. Gmail does some pretty nifty stuff, so they have restricted support to versions of browsers that they know they have some substantial market share.

    I mean, not even Opera is supported, and the Mac users had to shout to get Safari support. So, this is not a backstubbing on Mac’s IE, it’s just a design decision of which browsers are capable enough to support what Google wants to do with Gmail.

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