Microsoft is killing their web browser, Edge. Well sorta. Microsoft is changing their current web browser, Edge, to the same open-source engine as Chrome.
Why should you care about this latest news? Because it will now give website visitors a more consistent experience across multiple devices. The new Edge browser will be safer, faster, and more stable than previous versions of Edge or Internet Explorer.
Microsoft has always been known for not supporting open-source projects and relying on their closed platforms. Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, is making some major changes at Microsoft and supporting more cloud technologies and open-source development.
A Brief History of Microsoft Browsers
What’s the difference between Internet Explorer and Edge? Internet Explorer is Microsoft’s legacy browser and is still being supported (security updates only) on Windows 7 & 8. Microsoft Edge was released with Windows 10 and is their current default browser.
Before Edge, Microsoft’s browser was called Internet Explorer. If you are not aware, Internet Explorer was a web developers biggest nightmare! With every new version of IE, a developer would run into another slew of problems getting websites to render correctly. It often meant hours of debugging and adding special code “hacks” to get things to render correctly.
Currently, IE 11 is only being supported with security updates. January 9th, 2018 was the end of mainstream support for IE11. This means the browser no longer receives new features and design changes. Basically this means IE11 is officially dead! Finally!
You can still find IE11 on Windows 10. This was done to help support legacy applications or websites.
With Windows 10 came Edge. Microsoft built Edge from the ground up and while it was a vast improvement over IE, it still had its flaws. It didn’t require as much “code hacking” as Internet Explorer for web developers, but there would still be issues or bugs that developers had to deal with.
When it was first released, it lacked major features like print and extensions. Eventually, it grew into a decent web browser using their own proprietary EdgeHTML browser engine, but it still lacked a lot of the features and speed of Firefox or Chrome.
The Future of Microsoft Browsers
We aren’t exactly sure when Edge will be officially dead, but the move to Chromium in our opinions is a good one. The move to more open source projects is a big shift in the company culture at Microsoft. It seems clear that they have been the rise and success of many open source projects over the years and are looking to join the community.
What this Mean For Your Online Business
As online business owners, we want our customers to have a positive experience when they visit our websites. Microsoft’s move to open-source means that there will be more consistency on the internet, so web pages will render the same no matter what browser your visitors are using. This helps eliminate frustrations and will make for happier customers!
We have been big fans of open-source projects (WordPress & Linux) for many years and have always seen the value in a community working together to make something better. Microsoft’s shift to open-source means that they are willing to join and contribute to these projects. We expect that a few years from now, Microsoft will have a lot more innovative and exciting projects.
We were excited to hear this news about the Edge browser and look forward to seeing what happens. We think their decision to move to open-source will provide a better experience for everyone overall.