After many months of testing, Microsoft has detailed the rollout of its Chromium Edge browser and finalized the release date. As of yesterday, the beta channel has become the release candidate, and Microsoft is urging devs to build extensions for its store.
“In most cases, existing extensions built for Chromium will work without any modifications in the new Microsoft Edge,” explained the company in a blog post.
Those who haven’t submitted their extension for the Edge Addons Store will want to do so before January 15, its official release date. This will ensure users can grab all their necessary tools in one place, but it’s worth noting that you can also install anything from the Chrome Store.
The Big Migration
The old Edge, known as EdgeHTML, will cease accepting new extensions after tomorrow. Though devs will be able to continue updating existing efforts, the lack of new content is likely to be an annoyance to those who opt to install the Edge Blocker Toolkit.
Thankfully, Microsoft has promised to migrate user’s extensions to Chromium Edge automatically, should it be ported over to its new Addons store. The company previously announced that the new Edge will be bundled with a Windows Update for everyone on Windows 10 1709 and over. It’ll replace the icons and protocol handling of EdgeHTML, and will be hidden from the OS. Launching the old Edge will launch the new one instead.
After that, Edge updates won’t be dependent on operating system ones, a factor of EdgeHTML that was heavily criticized. Instead, it’ll update like any other browser – automatically or from within the settings menu.
When it comes to Chromium Edge itself, there’s a lot to like. As you’d expect, it borrows a lot from Google Chrome, but it cuts out many of Google’s services, introduces Microsoft’s accessibility tools, and features built-in tracking protection. I’ve been switching between Chrome and Edge beta for the past month or two and there really isn’t much between them. In the end, it’ll come down to the services you rely on most and which design you prefer.