Microsoft Announces Move to Chromium For The Edge Browser

Microsoft Announces Move to Chromium For The Edge Browser

Microsoft Announces Move to Chromium For The Edge Browser

The Register asked Microsoft what this shift means for ChakraCore, its Edge JavaScript engine which the company has been trying to integrate with Node.js via its Node-ChakraCore project as an alternative to Google's V8 JavaScript engine. There's a reason Microsoft didn't opt to go with UWP, and it's because Microsoft is prioritizing bringing Edge to other platforms over making it exclusive to Windows 10.

After rumours circulated that such a move was imminent, Microsoft has confirmed that it is indeed shifting from its EdgeHTML back end to Chromium, the open-source project that powers Google Chrome.

"Our intent is to align the Microsoft Edge web platform simultaneously (a) with web standards and (b) with other Chromium-based browsers". Even more interesting, Microsoft plans on making this new version of Edge available for all supported versions of Windows, including Windows 7, 8.1, and 10.

While Chrome is the most popular web browser in the world - and by quite a margin - Edge has been struggling to make an impact for a while now, so this move is (in our view) a good one by Microsoft.

In a blog post on the Mozilla website, creator of rival web browser Firefox, Chris Beard states that "by adopting Chromium, Microsoft hands over control of even more of online life to Google".

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If you're the type who likes to get eyes on beta versions of software before it hits the masses, there's also an Insider Program for the Edge browser.

Microsoft officials haven't said when they expect the new Edge to roll out to the mainstream, but it won't be anytime very soon, based on this schedule.

While the company is not commenting on any timeline for availability aside from a preview build in early 2019, the basics are this: it's building a new version of Edge, based on Chromium, that will be updated at a cadence that is not tied to Windows updates.

Edge will be updated more frequently; that means, likely, that Microsoft won't include Microsoft Edge updates with updates for the Windows operating system anymore.

In a bid to keep up with changing times and to improve compatibility with all websites, Microsoft will now use Chromium on Edge, the same platform used to run Google's Chrome offering. Microsoft's decision gives Google more ability to single-handedly decide what possibilities are available to each one of us.

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Microsoft plans to contribute to the Chromium project to improve the platform further. And, of course it will save Microsoft resources.

"If you're a Microsoft Edge customer, there is nothing you need to do as the Microsoft Edge you use today isn't changing".

According to Belfiore, Microsoft plans to make the switch to Chromium "over the next year or so".

The new Edge won't be a Universal Windows Platform app in order to make it usable outside of Windows 10, which accounts for about half of all Windows installations.

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