Default web browser that came with Windows has made a big step in the past year. Microsoft made the decision to stop producing its own rendering code and vice versa use Chromium the code that is targeted by most web developers today. Already paid: The share of usage has increased after a long period before the change. But Microsoft is not interested in just releasing the home version of Chrome, but instead offers innovation in terms of appearance, function and privacy. The first stable release appeared on January 15.
In Build 2020, Microsoft announced several exciting new features for end users and developers, including updates to the Collection, search on the page, improvements to the browser extension store, and automatic profile switching. Kyle Pflug from Microsoft, Prime PM for Edge Developers, gave a talk at this year’s Build online conference that covered all new capabilities. I will touch on the high points, with an emphasis on end user features, below.
Kyle Pflug from Microsoft, Prime Minister for Edge Developers, speaking at Build 2020
Pflug notes that his team has sent more than 3,000 commits code to the Chromium open-source project, with things like accessibility, touch input, and battery life performance.
Pinterest 🤍 Edge Collection
The Edge’s Collections feature is lighter, easier to access, and useful than most similar tools that have appeared in browsers for years. This allows you to easily create site groups, images and notes that are always available in the sidebar and synchronized across the Edge instances that you enter, whether on PC, Android, iOS, Mac, or the web. New to Collections is integration with Pinterest – in both directions. I mean, you can gather information from Pinterest suggestions for your collection and put out collections on social sites. This integration, of course, participates.
In other Collection news, users will be able to send collections to OneNote, as well as to Word and Excel which are already supported. This makes sense, because Collections and OneNote provide a way to collect and organize notes and media.
My favorite feature from the original Edge browser will come to a new Edge: the sidebar of search results. It’s much more convenient to see the results of the request in the same window as your web page, rather than having to open a new browser tab like you do in all other web browsers.
The new Automatic Profile Switch feature is exactly what it is. If, for example, you log in with your personal account and then switch to a work website that requires your work credentials, the browser detects it and switches to your work profile. A new feature related to business users is the upcoming support for Windows Information Protection in Windows 10. This technology protects sensitive company content. Also for Microsoft 365 business customers, Bing search will display special business info in results – contacts, documents, and intranet pages, for example.
One new capability that comes but is not mentioned by Pflug is the vertical tab, so you can have the list on the side rather than the above. Microsoft observer Richard Hay clear this new feature in one of the Build sessions.
New Developer Features
Build is definitely a developer event, so of course Pflug is eager to highlight new capabilities for coders. The first he mentioned was WebView2, which was actually not about the browser itself, but about the ability of developers to use all browser code in their Windows applications. Earlier versions of WebView were tied to the Windows version, while WebView2 was separated and worked wherever Edge did.
The new Edge’s PWA (progressive web application) capabilities affect developers and users. This is basically a website that you can treat as an application, using the menu options Applications> Install this site as an application. Pflug said, “The story with progressive web applications is always about, how can we close the gap as much as possible with the experience that users have native applications on their devices?”
Updates aimed at achieving this include letting you manage settings for PWA in Windows Settings, installing from the browser start screen, and sheet sharing capabilities (both sharing and receiving portions of Windows standard sharing sheets). This makes perfect sense, considering how many modern applications were first on the web.
Original Trial is a new service available to Edge programmers announced at Build this year. This allows them to activate experimental browser features for some of their users for a certain period of time. Participation in the program can affect the final features released.
How to Get Edge and New Features
The new Edge will be launched to all Windows users over the next few weeks. To immediately upgrade to the current stable release, go to Microsoft Edge download page, where you will find installers not only for Windows 10, but also for the three previous versions of Windows as well as for macOS, iOS, and Android.
However, getting this version won’t give you all the new features mentioned here. For that, you have to go to Microsoft Edge Insider page, where you can download building previews. These include a more stable Beta, a slightly more experimental Developer release and a bloody Canary release.
Pflug confirms that the Edge version of Linux is “real and coming,” although it will not determine the exact launch period. Although it’s not yet available to the public, its existence can be verified by appearing in one of the Build 2020 video segments on the new Windows application coding tool. For a closer look at browsers that have so far been impressive, look or see the details Microsoft Edge (Chromium).
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