I think it provides an interface to the IE component installed on the user's computer. It should use whatever the user has installed. However, the object model has changed and I hear they are not using shdocvw.dll now. This creates some problems in deploying an app in a mixed environment. If you know which version of IE is installed in user environment, much easier to build app around that version.
You may want to look for another wrapper to use for IE or another browser, or even build your own. There are a few WebBrowser control projects on CodeProject website. Here is something from MS forums that mentions on of the CodeProject samples:
How to MAKE my own webbrowser i Visual Basic 2008 http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/vbgeneral/thread/dbb979b4-2551-4eea-93aa-618adc97a6e5/