In the latest development from Microsoft, the company has launched Edge 121, a significant update for its browser, now available for download in the Stable Channel. Microsoft Edge 121 integrates support for advanced file formats and implements novel environmental and security initiatives.
Enhanced Media Experience with AVIF and AV1
Microsoft Edge has incorporated support for AVIF and AV1 file formats, offering users better compression ratios and superior quality for images and videos. AVIF, which stands for AV1 Image File Format, is based on the same key technology as the AV1 video format. Both formats are known for their ability to provide higher quality at smaller file sizes compared to their predecessors, such as JPEG and AVC/H.264, which translates to quicker load times for media content on web pages.
Streamlined Updates and Environmental Consciousness
The Edge 121 update streamlines the user experience by shifting update notifications to Browser Essentials, thus enhancing visibility and user interaction during the update process. However, note that this is a controlled feature rollout, and users may have to check back periodically for availability.
Another fresh addition is the “e-tree” feature in the Edge Wallet for users with a personal Microsoft Account. Participants can grow a virtual sapling in their Wallet, culminating in the planting of a real-life tree once the virtual one fully matures. Microsoft Edge has not only integrated this green initiative but also empowered administrators to manage its availability through the EdgeWalletEtreeEnabled policy.
Security Upgrades and Enterprise Features
Edge 121 introduces enhanced security through the implementation of brand-new Website Typo Protection policies. This feature is designed to alert users to potential typographical errors when typing popular domain names, potentially steering them away from malicious websites. Administered by administrators using specific policies, these protections aim to reduce the likelihood of users encountering security threats due to ‘typosquatting'.
Organizational branding has also received attention in the latest Edge update. Enterprises can now apply their branding assets from Microsoft Entra to various profile interfaces, aiding users to distinguish between different profiles and browser windows with greater ease. The adoption of branding must be carried out by admins through designated policies.
Coupled with these features, Microsoft Edge 121 incorporates six browser-specific security updates, enhancing the safety of users' online experiences. For detailed information, users can consult Microsoft's “Security updates” documentation.
Microsoft Edge will automatically apply the update at the time of the next restart, although users can expedite the process by navigating to the settings help page in Edge. Edge 121 is compatible with various platforms, including Windows 10, Windows 11, macOS, and Linux, broadening its accessibility and ensuring a wide-ranging impact.