The day the Spartan died. Microsoft is starting to automatically replace the old Edge with a new one

microsoft edge faq

Built on a completely different foundation, the new Edge browser is now distributed as a Windows update. This is the end to the confusion Internet Explorer has started decades ago.

It was the Internet browser that completely changed Microsoft's image for many long years. The famous antitrust trial over Internet Explorer has almost split the company. He also revealed her extremely unethical business practices, as a result of which, in the eyes of many, Microsoft ceased to be the wonderful company that helped bring computers under thatched roofs - becoming a greedy and ruthless corporation.

This whole story has its culmination only today (actually, from yesterday evening). Supported versions of Windows will from today replace users built on the Internet Explorer technology version of the Edge browser with a new, open source foundation Chromium. Microsoft has returned to co-creating the future of web standards as a trusted partner, and its new browser already has a real chance of maintaining a (distant) second place in the market share of desktop internet browsers. Until recently, this situation was unthinkable.

How is the new Microsoft Edge different from the old one?

edge update

The new Microsoft browser was basically built from the ground up. It is worth bearing in mind that these foundations were not built only by Microsoft. The new Edge - available for Windows, macOS, Android , iPadOS and iOS ) - is a proprietary overlay on the open source Chromium browser. You probably already know the other overlays, although you may not be aware of it. Chrome , Opera , Brave and Vivaldi are also add-ons for Chromium. The exception are editions of italics Edge for Apple mobile devices - due to the App Store regulations, these versions use the mechanism of website processing built into the operating system.

What does this mean in practice? Chromium is a project developed by all partners that make up it. So any innovations in the browser engine, which Opera, for example, will rent, become immediately available to other partners and can be used in Chrome, Edge and the rest. So everyone benefits from it, and Chromium develops very dynamically thanks to this.

Of course, browsers can be different, otherwise hardly anyone would see an interest in sharing their inventions with competitors. However, they differ in the so-called application layer - i.e. the interface or additional functions. Opera offers a functional sidebar, built-in ad blocking or a VPN service. Edge, in turn, integrates with Microsoft services and includes a proprietary mechanism to protect against invasion of privacy or malware. There are many examples. However, regarding the speed of processing websites and web applications, compliance with standards or special functions of Blink and V8 engines, performance and energy efficiency - Microsoft Edge will never significantly stand out from the rest of browsers using Chromium.

edge update

In addition to the new technology responsible for processing websites and applications, the new Edge also has several shortcomings compared to the classic version. These include, for example, the built-in visual card preview function or an advanced PDF reader (the new Edge has it in a simpler form). The new browser is, however, to eliminate these deficiencies over time, and makes up for them additionally with the Collection feature that allows you to group related sites or compatibility with extensions from the Chrome Web Store.

How could the software power of Microsoft be such a huge failure on the web browser market?

In fact, Microsoft has enjoyed this position since the beginning of Internet Explorer's dominance on the market, not because of a miracle product, but cleverness and cunning. The company bribed computer manufacturers in many different ways to prevent them from entering into cooperation with the creators of competitive browsers. There were even threats of breaking the cooperation if the partner did not want to agree on such arrangements.

As a result, every Windows computer had Internet Explorer pre-installed and displayed on the Desktop. And since most users are not passionate about comparing applications for browsing the Internet, Internet Explorer has become a synonym for websites. Even on a niche Macintosh, when Apple had a problem developing its own browser.

However, Microsoft did not stop there. As soon as the competition was marginalized, Bill Gates's company deliberately began introducing mechanisms into Internet Explorer that allowed programmers to extend web applications with features not available at the time in the web specification recognized as standard. More and more applications worked only on the Microsoft browser. Even if we liked another browser, IE was still necessary for some purposes.

Monopoly puts an eye on alertness.

Internet Explorer was not a terrible product. His biggest problem was the dishonesty of its creators and forcing closed proprietary solutions. Which by the way finally bit Microsoft in the place where the back ends its noble name - along with the deeper and deeper integration of Internet Explorer with Windows, completely new types of vulnerabilities began to appear, which Microsoft could not cope with for a long time.

At some point, the development of Internet Explorer almost froze. Microsoft missed the Opera revolution, which introduced tabs to the browser interface. He missed the phenomenon of Firefox, furiously developed by Microsoft's annoyed open up community standards. And finally he slept through Chrome, which instead of Microsoft nonsense offered a lightweight, fast and simple browser.

However, the biggest problem turned out to be the revolution on the smartphone market. Suddenly Safari from Apple has become one of the mainstream platforms. Soon after, Google joined this company with its Chrome. And Microsoft? The company didn't even have any smartphone or mobile system suitable for the mass customer. And even more so the internet browser.

Microsoft Edge was supposed to be a salvation. It worked out really well, but it couldn't work.

With a huge delay, but Microsoft finally woke up. First, he began to devote enormous resources to the development of Internet Explorer, filling in the deficiencies, slimming him or strengthening its security, but it was not enough. The same code, which once made millions of customers and users dependent on Internet Explorer, began to prevent further prosecution of dynamically developing competition.

This is how the title Project Spartan was created, which later turned into an Edge browser. This one was nothing but cleaned of archaic Internet Explorer. It was fast, agile, minimalist and energy saving. The problem is, no one really cares. A good Windows browser alone is not enough. And even with this good could be discussed.

The Edge's close association with Windows has given the developers of the new browser access to non-public APIs that other programmers cannot use. That is why Edge was so fast and so energy efficient. Only that it caused two more problems. First, Edge's development had to be synchronized with Windows's. It was not possible to introduce a non-service update without updating the entire operating system. Chrome is updated once every few weeks - Meanwhile, Edge couldn't be updated more than once every six months.

Close connection with Windows also meant that Edge was not the default browser on any of the popular Android and iOS phones and tablets, which significantly hindered its gaining popularity. Instead of introducing new functions, instead of introducing new functions, the team of engineers working on it had to focus on introducing various hacks into the browser engine to make it work efficiently and efficiently with applications and websites optimized for Chromium and Safari. Ironic turn of events, considering the fact that this is one of the former tricks on the popularity of Internet Explorer.

Edge in the form of Project Spartan ultimately never went beyond the margin. For now, it will remain as the default and only browser on Xbox One , but Microsoft has come to the conclusion that further work on it is already pointless.

Edge built on Chromium foundations will provide its users with many benefits. But what will Microsoft provide?

It's nice that Microsoft has started to share its technology with other Chromium partners. He is also very active - the company has already passed hundreds of patches to its new partners, thanks to which Chrome, Opera and the rest have become even better. Also nice is that Edge is just a good browser. Fast, secure and compatible with modern Web. Using it as the default on our computers and mobile devices is quite a good idea - although not everyone is able to get used to this thought. Edge is free, and Microsoft is not a charity. Where's the catch? Does Edge follow us, serve ads, or require fees for some features?

No, and probably it will never change. It is worth to understand why Microsoft has a web browser. This will help you remember what Microsoft really is - it's a software company. And this means that the key to her existence is the constant interest in programmers' products. It is they who will build new applications for Microsoft 365 , Azure , Teams , Dynamics 365 and the rest - and thus where Windows derives the most influence.

The Web is today one of the most important development platforms. Classic Edge with its marginal market share had no right to interest the development community and decision makers in the future of this network. Participation in the creation of Chromium gave Microsoft a place at the table - again it can shape the future of web applications and built on the basis of web languages. This is pure policy - although this time we get a very good project based on open standards.

Microsoft's failure and transformation result in bad news for Mozilla and Apple.

Chromium for today, mainly due to Chrome, is the dominant force on the web browser market. This is the default browser of the Android system dominating the mobile market. Chrome is also used by most macOS and Windows users - and the default Microsoft browser is built on the Chromium new Edge.

This means that almost all web site and application developers optimize their creations for Chrome. Other browsers are treated as marginal products - it even happens that some websites and applications come in two versions. One, the more modern, for Chromium. The second, simpler, for other browsers . Therefore, the creators of Firefox face the same problem as the creators of the classic Edge: instead of developing the browser, they devote resources to compatibility patches.

Safari is in a slightly better position. It is true that it is being developed as slowly as Internet Explorer once, but it is based on WebKit technology - and this is a very close relative of Blink used by Chromium. In addition, it is the default browser - without changing this setting - on iPhone and iPad phones that sell like fresh buns. Website and application developers will no doubt in the foreseeable future ensure their products' compatibility with Safari.

At some point, however, the goblet of bitterness may be shed. Safari is indicated by many as the main blocking force for the development of PWA - a completely new model of multiplatform applications that are created using web technologies and which are supported by Safari in a rudimentary way. If - as it has been rumored for months - the European Union forces Apple to be able to change the default browser on iOS and iPadOS , Safari may find itself in the reverse. Just as it is on macOS.

For now, however, let's take a second silence in memory of the old Edge and Internet Explorer.

Just a second, because it's more a waste of time. Internet Explorer is a symbol of Microsoft's pride and moral decline - and of the image crisis that he could not get out of for many years. After the classic Edge, there won't be much memories either - apart from the cool name of the technology, after all Project Spartan refers to the iconic series of Halo games.

Is it worth giving the new Edge a chance? It's definitely worth a try. The new Edge (Chromium) is the default browser on all my devices, regardless of the manufacturer and system. It's a decent, fast, convenient and secure browser. I can't point to major flaws - apart from the lack of synchronization of browsing history between devices, but this is to appear soon.

However, I can't point out any particular Edge edge advantage over other Chromium overlays. Due to the functionality and technology embedded in it, I would recommend the new Edge to anyone Firefox and Safari try - I think that many will eventually abandon the current browser. As for users of Chrome, Opera, Vivaldi or Brave - I doubt that you will be captivated by something. Although for your chance and attention, I deserve.

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The day the Spartan died. Microsoft starts automatically replacing the old Edge with the new one

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