Among the many new features of Windows Phone 8, one of the more significant ones is the inclusion of the new Internet Explorer 10 and its support for HTML5 webpages. So, Microsoft recently took the time to discuss some of the benefits of HTML5 on Windows Phone 8 for web and app developers on its Windows Phone Developer Blog.
Web pages can now be fleshed out with a number of enhancements thanks to expanded CSS3 support. Some of these enhancements include 3D effects, transitions and animations (that run independently of the main browser thread for optimal performance) and shadows for text and boxes. Developers can also use CSS gradients on their pages and custom fonts thanks to full Web Open Font Format (WOFF) support.
The layout of web pages can now be easily tweaked as well, as HTML5 pages can be coded to have the browser automatically separate text into multiple columns, while Internet Explorer 10 also supports positioned floats for the popular wrap-flow style of text around objects. Other layout improvements include CSS Regions (allows text from other sources to flow into a series of containers on the page), grid layouts (to eliminate the need for table layouts), device adaptation to give devs control of the layout viewport, and flexible boxes that have objects flow and expand in a particular direction.
There are a handful of other improvements that come with HTML5 and Internet Explorer 10, all of which are laid out in the blog entry, some of which include application caches and indexed object storage for offline viewing of webpages, multi-threading, low-latency communication channels back to page’s host server, and multi-touch and gesture support.
This all being said, there are some differences between Internet Explorer 10 on Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8. There are certain features that are not supported on Internet Explorer 10 for Windows Phone, including the following, as outlined on the Developer Blog:
- Inline video
- Some of the new manipulation views APIs for touch panning and zooming, with the exception of -ms-touch-action
- Multi-track HTML5 audio (simultaneous)
- ActiveX and VBScript
- Drag-and-drop APIs
- File access APIs with the exception of blobs which are supported on Windows Phone 8
- Windows 8 integration features: Link previews, pinned site icons & notifications and support for connecting sites to apps
- Also in Internet Explorer 10 for Windows Phone, Window.open does not return a valid window object. This is because on the phone each “window” is isolated in its own sandbox.
Source: Windows Phone Developer Blog