In September 2009, one year after releasing the Chrome browser, Google unveiled “Chrome Frame”—a plugin that brought Chrome’s underlying technology to Internet Explorer. Google said Chrome Frame was necessary because users of IE, particularly its older versions, were missing out on HTML5, JavaScript performance improvements, and other modern Web technologies.

chrome_frame-430Webpages containing a tag pointing to Chrome Frame switch automatically to “Google Chrome’s speedy WebKit-based rendering engine” when the page detects that an IE user has Chrome Frame installed, according to Google. Chrome Frame runs on IE versions 6, 7, 8, and 9.

But today, Google said the plugin isn’t needed anymore and it will stop receiving support and updates entirely in January 2014. “It’s unusual to build something and hope it eventually makes itself obsolete, but in this case we see the retirement of Chrome Frame as evidence of just how far the Web has come,” Chrome engineer Robert Shield wrote in the Chromium blog

Dumping Chrome Frame could cause a bit of grief for developers, as some commenters on Shield’s blog post and on Hacker News point out. Google contends that there won’t be too many annoyances and that there are fixes for those that will exist. On the whole, Google believes Web development today is a less frustrating experience than it was when Chrome Frame was devised.