Microsoft recently released the Chromium-based Edge browser for Windows 10 and 8.1, 7, and macOS. This new browser has all the same features as Chrome, as well as some exclusive features. However, its appearance will soon be redesigned to fit Fluent Design’s concept.
Microsoft reports that using the popular open-source engine has improved compatibility for all users and reduced fragmentation for web developers. Specialists from the software giant will now be actively involved in the development of this core.
In the coming months, Microsoft plans to revise the current version of the overly rounded button design in favor of a flatter design, add transparency, reduce the scroll bar and address bar, and reduce the toolbar on non-touch desktop computers. Also, new animation effects are promised.
The developers said they are working closely with designers to give the browser a modern look at the Fluent Design style, although this work is still at an early stage. There may be problems using themes from Chrome after that, but at Redmond, they’re already thinking about their themes.
Key innovations that deserve attention
- Tracking prevention features to protect user privacy when browsing websites. Some sites may track visitors to provide targeted advertising or information about visiting third-party resources. The new browser offers three levels of tracking blocking, and by default, the “Balanced” level will be activated, which will block known malicious trackers.
- Personalized configuration of the new tab. Beta testers can select the layout, design, and content of the new tab. In the final version of the browser, the ability to fine-tune the display of personalized news has been added.
- Support for Azure Active Directory, an enterprise identity management service that provides a single sign-on and multi-factor authentication, protecting users from 99.9% cyber attacks.
- Internet Explorer Mode – A simplified browser interface that provides compatibility with sites that require a Trident MSHTML handler. IE mode also supports ActiveX elements, document modes, and corporate modes.
- Support for 4K video streaming. Microsoft Edge is the first browser on Chromium that supports both WideVine and PlayReady DRM technologies. It allows users to view streaming videos on services such as Netflix, in full 4K resolution.
- Support for Chrome extensions improves browser functionality and gives users access to hundreds of useful tools to improve productivity.
You can download the new Microsoft Edge from the official website or you can wait for the next Windows 10 update, which will automatically install a new browser. Deployment of Microsoft Edge through Windows Update will be gradual to ensure a smooth and stable transition. Organizations can access the new browser by installing a standalone deployment package themselves.