jQuery 2.0 released

Ben Moss.
April 19, 2013
jQuery 2.0 released.

ThumbnailHot on the heels of jQuery Mobile 1.3 comes jQuery 2.0, a brand new, full release version of the popular JavaScript library.

The big news — that we've known for a while — is that jQuery 2.0 has dropped the library's support for Internet Explorer 6, 7 and 8. These so-called legacy browsers are slowly creeping towards extinction and it's certainly true that very few people still use IE6. However, there are still substantial numbers of clients requesting IE 7+ support.

The payoff for dropping IE6, 7 and 8 is a smaller core file (over 8kb for the minified file), with faster performance.

The developers state that jQuery 2.0 is intended "for the modern web" which is reflected in the lack of support for older IE versions. However, one of the key aspects of the modern web — albeit one we hate to acknowledge — is that people are still using legacy versions of IE, particularly in the developing world. In fact, there are so many people currently using IE8 as their browser of choice, it's a little difficult justifying the label 'legacy' at all. Of course it would be nice to only consider the most up to date browsers, but this move by the jQuery development team feels a little premature.

If you're one of the unlucky majority who still need to support IE6, 7 or 8 then you'll need to stick with jQuery 1.9 for now, and hope that jQuery 1.10 — which will support legacy versions of Internet Explorer and is scheduled for release in the near future — will serve your purposes.

The dual fork of jQuery 2.0 and the upcoming 1.10 is almost certainly going to lead to confusion. The difficult question is which version of jQuery should developers be using? jQuery 2.0 is new and shiny, but do the performance gains really justify the price paid? jQuery 1.9 is also relatively new and most of the library's key changes are included in 1.9.

It's actually arguable that the new '2.0' label is a red herring, and the real changes took place with 1.9, when a number of inefficient methods were killed off. So perhaps jQuery 2.0 and jQuery 1.10 are merely new in name only, released as preparation for further developments down the road.

For the time being, 1.9 seems to be the sensible choice for the vast majority of jQuery developers. Whether or not that will be true for much longer remains to be seen.

Will you be using jQuery 2.0 in upcoming projects? Which is the oldest version of IE you develop for? Let us know in the comments.

Featured image/thumbnail, legacy computing image via Shutterstock.

Ben Moss

Ben Moss has designed and coded work for award-winning startups, and global names including IBM, UBS, and the FBI. When he’s not in front of a screen he’s probably out trail-running.

Read Next

15 Best New Fonts, June 2024

Welcome to our roundup of the best new fonts we’ve found online in the last month. This month, there are notably fewer…

20 Best New Websites, June 2024

Arranging content in an easily accessible way is the backbone of any user-friendly website. A good website will present…

Exciting New Tools for Designers, June 2024

In this month’s roundup of the best tools for web designers and developers, we’ll explore a range of new and noteworthy…

3 Essential Design Trends, June 2024

Summer is off to a fun start with some highly dramatic website design trends showing up in projects. Let's dive in!

15 Best New Fonts, May 2024

In this month’s edition, there are lots of historically-inspired typefaces, more of the growing trend for French…

How to Reduce The Carbon Footprint of Your Website

On average, a web page produces 4.61 grams of CO2 for every page view; for whole sites, that amounts to hundreds of KG…

20 Best New Websites, May 2024

Welcome to May’s compilation of the best sites on the web. This month we’re focused on color for younger humans,…

Has AI Killed User Testing?

Web designers employ user testing to evaluate a website’s functionality and overall UX (user experience). Various…

Exciting New Tools for Designers, May 2024

This year, we’ve seen a wave of groundbreaking apps and tools. AI is reshaping the industry, enhancing productivity,…

Using AI to Predict Design Trends

Design trends evolve at a blistering pace, especially in web design. On multi-month projects, you might work on a…

15 Best New Fonts, April 2024

Just like web design, type design follows trends. And while there’s always room for an exciting outsider, we tend to…

3 Essential Design Trends, May 2024

Integrated navigation elements, interactive typography, and digital overprints are three website design trends making…