Microsoft has a lot on their plate this year with Windows 10, Phone, Surface, Cortana, and more. One of those to-do items to finish is the new Microsoft Edge Browser, formerly known as Project Spartan. The browser is coming along nicely, but like many things on Microsoft's roadmap, there is still much more to come.
In a deep dive session this evening on Microsoft Edge, Microsoft's Charles Morris, and Sean Lyndersay discussed a few aspects of the new browser, including extensions and when they are coming.
Unfortunately, extensions will not make it into the RTM build of Microsoft Edge, due sometime "this summer" (yes, they are still sticking to that timeframe). After Edge ships, Microsoft will continue to iterate upon Edge through updates in the Windows Insider program. Once feedback has been received, and the new feature is ready, it will ship to Windows 10 through an in-Store update to users.
Although it is unfortunate that extensions are still months away, the good news is that we are getting them. More importantly, developers can simply recompile them with a few tweaks. This feature means your favorite Chrome or Firefox extension stands a very high chance of being part of the Microsoft Edge experience.
Besides the Reddit Enhancement Suite (RES) extension, Morris and Lyndersay also demonstrated a Bing Translator app that not only automatically translates websites, but will even work in Reader Mode. The demonstration shows just how powerful and useful these extensions will be in Edge, which is reassuring.
Some other features that won't be included in the RTM build but are coming later, include:
- More Cortana scenarios
- Object RTC
- Pointer lock
- Many new app and platform features
Those on the Windows Insider program can expect updates to Edge roughly every two weeks (or twice a month). The regular schedule for updates to Edge for the public has not yet been decided upon.
Overall, Microsoft Edge is looking very exciting. The browser looks clean, the new Cortana scenarios are impressive, and the app is more than just a "me too" in the web world. With none of the baggage of IE, Microsoft can finally be free to build a true 64-bit browser, with no limitations. It can only get better from here, folks.
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