A test version of Internet Explorer 8 has been out there since March, but now Microsoft has given a date to the next beta release.

A "feature-complete" version of its Internet Explorer 8 Web browser will be made available in August, said the computing giant and its already getting rave reviews, even from the competition.

“IE8 is good, really good", Mozilla Europe president Tristan Nitot told Pocket-lint in an interview on Wednesday.

"They [Microsoft] have promised that they care about standards", Nitot said in a moment of generosity about the competition. "If that means everyone can design just for one browser rather than multiple browsers that has got to be good for the web community."

IE8 will build on the responses by developers and web designers who have been trying out the first version, but will be targeted more at ordinary web users.

Microsoft promises that it will essentially be a full version of the browser, but there will be some bugs that people who take part in the test will be able to report.

The release of the full and final version of the new web browser hasn't been given a date as yet but Microsoft released Internet Explorer 7 in October 2006 (so bloggers are suggesting a late autumn launch for IE 8).

It will go up against Mozilla's Firefox 3, which is currently also in beta, but has been gaining popularity.