Microsoft Introduces Its New Browser, "Edge"
Late last week, Microsoft unveiled their newest browser, called Microsoft Edge. This is a future replacement to Internet Explorer (IE). While IE was the de facto standard browser for years, IE’s market share has been falling for several quarters now. What was once market domination for Microsoft has now become Google’s arena with Chrome. Microsoft is looking to change that by abandoning IE (though they will be keeping IE around for compatibility) as the default browser on the Windows operating system.
What is Microsoft Edge?
In the past few years, IE has had some serious bad press around it. Nicknames like “Internet Exploder” and “Internet Eroder” have put the far better recent iterations of IE (like IE9 and IE10) in an uphill battle with consumers. However it hasn’t been just a press nightmare, Internet Explorer’s problems have been more from a web standard perspective.
Major Browser Improvements with Edge
The biggest past complaints with IE regarded incompatibilities and general lack of support with newer web standards like HTML5. Because of these incompatibilities and the lack of the WebKit browser layout engine (which is the basis of the Chrome and Safari browsers), this has made development for the IE browser extremely troublesome.
“Every time a browser is released, a developer loses their wings.”
Well, that’s not entirely true… but it can feel like that for web developers. Simple tasks to implement in Chrome, Safari or even Firefox can be extremely frustrating and virtually impossible in IE. Fortunately with the most recent iterations of IE and now Edge, Microsoft is embracing newer web standards like HTML5.
The most interesting thing about Microsoft Edge is the newer “EdgeHTML” layout engine, as opposed to the preview IE “Trident” layout engine. Microsoft has even announced support for Chrome and Firefox browser extensions.
Modernizing The Web
What’s the take away for marketers and businesses advertising on the web? Hopefully with Microsoft Edge, we will see better compatibility and a more standardized web. This could mean faster development timelines, less work to implement and more creativity in design and development of web content. The web has been held back by legacy code and older standards. Microsoft has been partially to blame with their long-term support timelines with browsers like IE8, which looks like Microsoft is trying to right some wrongs and start adopting more modern web standards.
By adopting browser extensions and leaving the legacy “Trident” engine behind should make the new browser more desirable with consumers and developers alike. In the meantime, the Blueprint staff will continue to play with Microsoft’s latest browser and keep your company’s site compatible with the latest and greatest web technologies.