It´s already a well known fact that Microsoft Edge offers stunning rendering performance. Since our first benchmarks using early Spartan builds some time has passed. This is how Edge performs WebGL on the final version of Windows 10.
–> Benchmark Deep-Dive: Microsoft Windows 10 Spartan Browser vs. IE11 vs. Google Chrome 41 vs. Mozilla Firefox 36
The version of Edge which gets shipped with the final RTM version of Windows 10 can now be tested more in detail. The demanding Unity WebGL Benchmark allows to test WebGL speed of Edge across different dimensions with numerical outputs and a total score.
Unity WebGL Benchmark is also compatible with the newest versions of Firefox and Chrome which allows for a nice detailed benchmark comparison.
What is WebGL and why it matters
Stackoverflow has a good technical definition: “WebGL is a branch of OpenGL based on OpenGL Embedded Systems (ES). It is run in browsers through a
WebGL makes it possible to render interactive 2D and 3D graphics without any using plug-ins. For that reason it is also called a gravedigger of Adobe´s Flash plugin. To understand why that matters, just read over Steve Job´s famous Thoughts on Flash declaration where he explains why Apple decided against flash for iOS devices.
But it can do more than just graphics. WebGL basically allows to implement complex programs directly into websites. If you want to see some examples of how WebGL gets used already, just visit WebGL Samples – they have tons of them.
Or you just visit Google Maps in Full 3D mode using WebGL which might be one of the most used and most stunning implementations of WebGL on websites.
Asm.js – Taking websites to the next level
Below is just one example of a 3D shooter using WebGL with asm.js in fullscreen mode. On GitHub you find more impressive asm.js examples.
TIP: If you want to run Edge with asm.js – you need to turn it on manually. The version of Edge coming with Windows 10 has it turned off as Microsoft is still working on a stable implementation.
BananaBread: A 3D first person shooter game compiled to JS+WebGL
Unity WebGL Benchmark results: Edge vs. Chrome 44 vs. Firefox 39
We ran the Unity WebGL Benchmark on Edge, Firefox 39 and Chrome 44. To illustrate the impact of asm.js, we tested Edge using Unity WebGL Benchmark also without asm.js. As you can see below, the results are stunning.
Based on the Unity WebGL Benchmark, Microsoft Edge currently provides the best asm.js performance and is even faster than Firefox which supports asm.js for quite a while. But as you can see, there are different rankings in some sub-tests. As we found out with the Massive ASM.JS only benchmark, Edge still has some way to go before it can beat Mozilla Firefox.
The overall score is a result of weighting, based on what the developers of Unity WebGL Benchmark consider more important. So, depending on the website code, in some scenarios Microsoft Edge will be slower than Firefox. But nearly always Edge should perform much better than Google Chrome.
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Specs of the testing machine
- ASRock H97M Pro4 Intel H97
- Intel Core i7 4770K 4x 3.50GHz
- 8GB (2x 4096MB) Corsair Vengeance Black DDR3-1600 DIMM CL8-8-8-24
- SSD 128GB Samsung 840 Pro Series 2.5″
- Windows 10 Technical Preview build 9929
- Intel HD Graphics 4600