Microsoft is planning to take away some features from its Edge browser to make it simpler and better for users. According to the latest update notes, features like Math Solver, Picture Dictionary, Citations, Grammar Tools, and Kids Mode will be removed.
What Were These Features About?
Math Solver used to be a feature designed to assist in solving math problems on web pages. Accessing it involved clicking on the Math Solver icon in the address bar or selecting More tools > Math Solver from the menu. Math Solver would scan the web page for equations, allowing the user to select one for solving. Additionally, users had the option to input their own equations via the Math Solver panel. The solution would then be displayed step by step, accompanied by graphs, videos, and related worksheets.
Picture Dictionary served the purpose of aiding in the acquisition of new vocabulary from web pages. To access this feature, one needed to select a word and perform a right-click, followed by choosing Picture Dictionary from the menu. Upon activation, Picture Dictionary would present an image and definition of the selected word, including its pronunciation and synonyms. The pronunciation could also be heard by clicking on the speaker icon.
Citations assisted users in managing and generating citations from online sources. Accessing this functionality involved clicking on the Collections icon in the address bar or selecting More tools > Collections from the menu. Citations functioned as an extension of the Collections feature, enabling the organization of web pages, images, and notes into distinct groups. To create a citation, a web page needed to be added to a collection, followed by clicking the … button adjacent to it and selecting Cite from the menu. The Citations feature would then automatically formulate a citation in the user's preferred format (APA, MLA, Chicago, or Harvard). Users also had the option to modify or copy the generated citation for use in documents.
Grammar Tools was a feature geared towards enhancing reading comprehension on web pages. It was accessible by clicking on the Reading view icon in the address bar or selecting More tools > Reading view from the menu. Activating Grammar Tools would transition the web page into a distraction-free mode, allowing adjustments to text size, background color, and line focus. Enabling Grammar Tools could also be achieved by clicking on the … button situated in the top right corner of the Reading view and choosing Grammar Tools from the menu. Once activated, Grammar Tools provided functionalities such as word syllable breakdown, highlighting various parts of speech (nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.), and word translation into different languages.
Kids Mode facilitated the creation of a secure browsing environment for children. Access was granted through clicking on the profile picture in the address bar or selecting Browse in Kids Mode from the menu. Upon initiation, Kids Mode prompted the user to select an age range for the child (5-8 years or 9-12 years) and a browser theme. Subsequently, Kids Mode would launch a customized window with a tailored home page, offering the child access to approved websites, games, and videos. This mode also implemented safeguards against adult content, disabled browsing history and downloads, and restricted the child's ability to modify settings or exit Kids Mode without proper authorization.
What Microsoft Officially Said
Microsoft's official update notes from August 25, 2023, said they are removing these features to make the browser simpler and easier to use. They also talked about new things like “Smart Find,” which helps users search better, and “E-tree in Wallet,” where users can grow a virtual tree and then a real tree gets planted.