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Gomez Helps Developers Prepare for IE8 by Overcoming its Rendering and Connection Parallelism Challenges

April 17, 2008 — Gomez, Inc., a leader in web application experience management, today announced support for Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) 8 beta 1. Using the Gomez® ExperienceFirst(TM) platform of on-demand web application experience testing and measurement services, developers can quickly understand how existing and new applications will look and perform in IE8, as well as the impact of IE8 on their infrastructure.

“The introduction of IE 8 presents developers with great opportunities for web experience improvements but also potential pitfalls for the unprepared,” says Gomez’s CTO, Imad Mouline. “IE8 will impact both the visual rendering of a website as well as its performance due to its increased connection parallelism. Using the Gomez ExperienceFirst platform will enable web developers to assess their readiness for IE8, mitigate performance issues and plan for infrastructure investments.”

In Gartner, Inc.’s recent report (1), “Microsoft Chooses Standards Future with Internet Explorer 8”, analysts Ray Valdes and David Mitchell Smith recommend that designers, developers and architects strive to design for standards, not browsers, using simple designs that drive business value and validate with objective data from real users.

To enable this, the Gomez ExperienceFirst platform offers the following solutions:

• Reality View(TM) XF helps developers see how their web applications look when viewed in IE8, compared to IE7, IE6 and other popular browsers. Reality View XF performs on-demand tests using the actual browser running on hundreds of combinations of devices, operating system and screen resolutions. It instantly reveals browser-related errors that impact the end-user’s experience like chopped menus, missing graphics or empty boxes where Flash content should play.

• Unlike competitive solutions which are hard-wired to just IE7, Gomez’s active website monitoring services enable developers to preview the impact of IE8’s dramatically increased connection parallelism on the performance of their web applications. Gomez’s Active Network(TM) XF and Active Last Mile(TM) XF solutions emulate the IE8 browser and provide measurement data from over 150 global Internet backbone nodes and 40,000 desktop computers.

• Gomez’s Actual Experience(TM) XF can measure the actual customer experience while they are using an application in IE8. It uses JavaScript tags embedded within website scripts to relay the actual performance of the website as experienced by the user.

“With formal release of IE8 just a few months away, developers need to understand the challenges they face in adjusting existing web applications and building new ones in time,” said Jaime Ellertson, Gomez’s chief executive officer. “The flexibility within the ExperienceFirst platform has made it possible for us to provide support for IE8 beta 1 within a week of the software being released to developers. Using Gomez’s services, developers can be ready to deliver quality web experience to all customers, wherever they are located and however they connect to the Internet.”

Connection parallelism impacts performance

Unlike previous versions of IE, IE8 has significantly increased the number of concurrent connections used to download web application content. This may mean a dramatic increase in the volume of connections to each web server. This increase means more content can be downloaded to the browser faster, good news for the web experience. However, for the unprepared, it can also mean strain on network and server infrastructure, causing performance bottlenecks and ultimately degrading the web experience. Using the Gomez ExperienceFirst platform will help developers assess the impact of these higher connection levels on the performance of their applications, before going into production.

Visual challenges

For years web designers had to work around incompatibilities in prior versions of IE, which made cross-browser applications difficult. With improvements in how IE8 will handle CSS (cascading style sheets) and HTML attributes, applications designed for IE7 may experience rendering problems. Using Reality View XF, designers can instantly see how their web applications will look when viewed in IE8 by running tests on several different machine types, operating systems and screen resolutions, and then make any necessary design changes.

About Gomez

Gomez, Inc. is a leading on-demand infrastructure provider for web application experience management solutions, helping business ensure quality web experiences for their customers. More than 1,000 companies use Gomez® ExperienceFirstSM services worldwide, including 15 of the top 20 most visited websites. Gomez provides a comprehensive solution for managing the web application experience from development through deployment and the entire application life cycle, featuring visual, functional and load testing, actual end-user and active website monitoring, competitive benchmarking, and more than 40,000 data sources worldwide.

For more information, please visit www.gomez.com.

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Gomez® is a registered service mark, and ExperienceFirst(TM, Reality View(TM) XF , Active Network(TM) XF, Active Last Mile(TM) XF and Actual Experience(TM) XF are service marks, of Gomez, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.

1 Gartner report “Microsoft Chooses Standards Future With Internet Explorer 8” by Ray Valdes and David Mitchell Smith, 12 March 2008

Media Contact:

Vikki Chowney
Six Degrees
Email: vikki.chowney@sixdegreespr.com
Tel: + 44 (0) 1628 480280

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