Tech

Browser rivals offer cautiously positive welcome to Microsoft's Chromium move

Browser rivals offer cautiously positive welcome to Microsoft's Chromium move

"We also expect this work to enable us to bring Microsoft Edge to other platforms like macOS".

Google Chrome is overwhelmingly the dominant web browser and a de facto standard. The new Edge will soon be among them, which Microsoft's Joe Belfiore says will ensure users get "improved compatibility with all websites".

Ultimately, we want to make the web-experience better for many different audiences.

Safari could join Firefox, Chrome, and Edge support for Web Authentication. While the engine will change, Microsoft has stated that they will continue utilizing the Microsoft Edge name and will now bring the browser to all supported Windows platforms.

"For the past few years, Microsoft has meaningfully increased participation in the open source software (OSS) community, becoming one of the world's largest supporters of OSS projects". To reach more people, Microsoft plans to expand Edge beyond Windows 10 to Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and MacOS, and will update the browser more frequently.

Microsoft also makes Edge apps for both Android and iOS mobile operating systems, but these apps already use aspects of the Chromium platform.

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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. This should help developers who use those platforms test Edge if they need to.

Whether consumers will adopt the rebuilt Edge browser is another matter. "It will be interesting to see how Microsoft and Google engage as competitors on the same code base, both short term and long term". Firefox 1.0 was released in 2004, but it took a further seven years for Internet Explorer's market share to drop below 50 percent. Edge, Microsoft's newest browser, arrived with Windows 10 and it's only available on Windows machines.

Microsoft is overhauling its Edge browser to run on Google's Chromium platform, the same one that powers Chrome, and in doing so it's giving Google too much control over the web, according to Mozilla CEO Chris Beard. "We look forward to working with Microsoft and the web standards community to advance the open web, support user choice, and deliver great browsing experiences".

Mozilla says that Microsoft's decision could make it harder for Firefox to prosper.

"From a social, civic and individual empowerment perspective ceding control of fundamental online infrastructure to a single company is awful", wrote Mozilla CEO Chris Beard. He denies that he is being melodramatic with this claim because, he explains, Chromium is one of the ways in which Google controls what we are able to see online. "Google's dominance across search, advertising, smartphones, and data capture creates a vastly tilted playing field that works against the rest of us".