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Windows 10 is set to be one of the biggest software updates in Microsoft history, and it looks like that could mean a brand new browser for the new operating system. The company is reportedly working on a secret project, codenamed "Spartan," which should offer a sleeker design that feels more like Google Chrome and less like Internet Explorer, according to reports.

The news comes from ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, who's a pretty reliable source when it comes to Microsoft news. Foley adds that Windows 10 will also ship running Internet Explorer 11 "for backward-compatibility's sake," while Spartan will be available for both mobile and desktop versions of the new OS. There's no word on whether the rumored browser will be available for competing operating systems, though it's certainly possible given Microsoft's recent cross-platform strategy.

It's also worth noting that Microsoft isn't starting from scratch with its new browser. Spartan apparently uses the same Microsoft engines for JavaScript and rendering, so it could be pretty similar to Internet Explorer on the backend.

Microsoft is set to unveil "the next chapter" of Windows 10 at a press event next month on Jan. 21. It's possible that could be our first official look at Spartan, though ZDNet's sources say the new browser may not be ready in time.