Released yesterday, the new version of Java 6.10 sport many additions and enhancements like the new next generation Java plug-in offering robust applets and plug-ins deployment, hardware accelerated 3D graphics using DirectX 9.0c, video playback and spatialized audio.
On the performance side, the installer is slightly speedier than the previous and this new JRE version should offer some performance boosts too. And from now on, Java Quick Starter will run as a system service. Also, this version fixed more than 700 bugs and issues.
However, 3D accelerated graphics using DirectX 9.0c demands some hardware requirements and has some limitation such as 3D acceleration is enabled only for applications and not for applets within the browser, and some graphic operations many perform slower.
Also, for Java developers using Windows XP 64-bit it's recommended to install JRE before Installing JDK to avoid an installation error.
Personally, all I can say about version 6.10 is an incremental update in right direction and it's clear that Sun is preparing to do some catching-up with RIA (Rich Internet Applications) trends with the near to be introduced JavaFX.