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Microsoft Edge browser won't pick up Extension support until after RTM

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.

Follow the rest of our Build 2015 coverage right here!

Daniel Rubino
Executive Editor

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

103 Comments
  • Extensions are a must need . Good to hear they're coming :-)
  • All I want is ad blocker, that's what u need when u start using ur browser
  • Ie already has it in-built.. Tpl I guess
  • Is useless as compared to the AdBlock on FF or Chrome. I'm still seeing lots of ads popping on IE while things are so clean on the FF.
  • Maybe you should add more lists than. Also use German's and General Easylist .. they are good
  • There's Ad Block in Chrome? News to me hehe
  • Why not just use actual Adblock Plus for IE?
  • well the question really is.. does Spartan support TPL and will they sync over to phones
  • Looking at Google Chrome, I think the best extensions are those which google themselves have made. I cant live without the google translate extension. Only problem is that these are the extensions that will defiantly not come to Edge. Therefore I hope that Microsoft themselves builds some fantastic extensions for edge themselves just like google has with Chrome.
  • I saw a Bing translator extension icon during presentation it looked like
  • Bing translation extension will be coming and was mentioned in this article
  • Gtranslator is shit compared to the bing one. Its translations are awful.
  • I think Noscript is more important than adblock, at least for security.
  • agree with you i want adblock nthing else
  • Adblock please
  • Nice Better late than never
  • Really thats the only thing that keeps me on Firefox is the addons.  Edge feels very fast and light.
  • I so need RES, so glad this is all happening. Very exciting.
  • Do you think that some extensions could make their way to Edge on Windows 10 for phones?
  • My understanding of the new Windows 10 Universal Apps would make extensions for an app on one type of device would work with the app on all device types.
  • I hope that all this features become available worldwide and not US only like xbox music and video
  • Xbox Music and Video are available in Canada.
  • And New Zealand
  • And Australia
  • And my Axe
  • And the U.K.
  • And Italy.
  • What would give you the silly idea that extensions would be US only chele?
  • I'd use Spartan a lot more if I could use my password manager extension of choice. Good to know it might make it across in the future.
  • Better late than never.
  • I have to say that MS really redeemed themselves today, and over the past year they have really ramped up to full throttle.. They're firing on all cylinders now....
    ..........
    If they get marketing right across the board, and in the US, then W10 will kill it.
  • They should have made you the marketing executive for windows phones. I'll be damned if the market share wasn't above 40% with you on the helm :P
  • MS would be broke, but I would have it at at least 15% by now... Lol..
    ......
    But, MS would be broke. Lol.
  • They're indeed going full speed ahead. Let us just hope they don't find an iceberg on the way. Titans don't normally do well with icebergs.   Also, even more than the marketing, they must END the colossal abyss between what they offer in the US and what they offer (or in this case, don't) in the rest of the World. There's a reason why in places like Europe, Google search has 92% of the search engine marketshare, Android 74% on mobile, and Chrome, Firefox and Safari all have bigger marketshare than Internet Explorer (49%, 17% and 17% respectively, versus 11% of IE). Microsoft MUST stop treating markets like first and second rate. Sure, the USA is their "home" market...but if the USA clearly doesn't care for them, why do they insist in putting everything US-only or US-first? (If they did the kinds of promotions in Europe with Xbox they do in the US, the PS4 wouldn't be beating the XB1 that easily for example).   Marketing is important. But treating consumers worldwide equally is even more important. Because if has an effect on marketing.
  • True.. True.. Well said❗ I agree completely.
  • Yes, exactly this!
  • Well the problem Microsoft and other companies run into is local laws and other stuff of that nature being different depending on country. Thats why a lot of stuff like contests, services(at first) etc is US only
  • But, as far as services, and products go, doesn't Samsung, Apple, and Google, run into the same issues❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓
  • Yes they do. Apple only just made Siri speak Dutch for instance. But services like the Bing rewards should be easy to offer world wide.
  • I don't see why not.
  • The problem for Microsoft is that especially the EU has their eyes on then. Remember how they got kicked in the jewels as they dared not to offer the customer of Windows other brothers than IE after that bought a PC? Microsoft has to face all kind of bullshit biased regulations which Google and Apple somehow do not face. Why, for example, wasn't Apple also kicked in the nuts for not offering their customers different browsers? Apple and Google always seem to be the governments good boys where as Microsoft is the bad guy and that's I guess the main reason why in the EU MS is a lot nor cautious.
  • It is the same for Google. They got a lawsuit in EU for favorit there own services in search algorithms. http://rt.com/news/249733-eu-google-antitrust-case/
  • The EU only acts when companies monopolize or abuse their dominant position on something. Apple has that on nothing. The only thing they had that on was with iTunes and the EU acted on it.   Microsoft abused their dominant position to try and shove IE into everyone's throats. They got a kick for it. Google abuses by forcing their services on Android users throats...and they're now getting their beating. 
  • Politics
  • Different regulations make treating everyone equally a pipedream.
  • Except commerce regulations are now pretty standard worldwide. That's why there's a World Trade Organization. Also, regions like Europe for example have the pretty much the same regulations as the US and the ones we have that the US don't, don't prevent Microsoft from offering things. Because Google and Apple are able to provide them. So Microsoft CHOSES not to offer them and keep them US-only. They can't blame regulations for that. Sorry.
  • Yep
  • Exactly they limit the content and the apps in the rest of the world but Apple and Google no. ​
  • It needs to support Adblock. Otherwise, I'll keep using Firefox.
  • Internet Explorer already supports Tracking Protection (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/internet-explorer/products/ie-9/featu...) and I'd assume this is already a part of Edge, extensions or no. Windows Central actually ran an article on this: http://www.windowscentral.com/here-how-block-ads-ie-11-windows-81 EDIT: Worth noting that this actually allows you to add EasyList, which is the same tracking list AdBlock Plus uses. Works like a charm and it's built into the browser.
  • AdBlock also officially supports IE as well. They have an extension available for download. ;)
  • The downside I notice on my W7 PC is that updating AdBlock for IE requires a restart. Hopefully, the Edge won't even need to restart the browser for extension updates.
  • Can you rightclick an add and manually add them to lists there yet?
  • Try Ghostery
  • Sadly, after four failed installs of Windows 10, I've safely placed that my PC just isn't liking the OS, for whatever reason. I'll wait til sometime after RTM and do a clean install when that time comes. Love how the OS looks, but for some reason, it hasn't been nice to me.
  • And yes, I've tried support, feedback, personal troubleshooting, and even a clean install...but there's always something glaring on it that breaks it for me. This time, sound didn't work, even after driver update/uninstall/reinstall.
  • Wanted to see more for phones. They're so secretive when I comes to WP for some reason.
  • I think isn't much to show. I hope I'm wrong on this
  • Continuum on phones is one of the most exciting features ever. I've been waiting for a long time for a decent implementation. Android, Ubuntu have failed, but Windows looks like it might pull it off. Nothing else would top my enthusiasm.
  • Continuum on phones is the most exciting thing I've seen since touch.
  • Ah, extensions. Also, please add customizations like chrome.
  • The only real "must have" extension for me is LastPass. It is such huge time saver, plus a great security enhancement. Please MS, work with the LastPass team to make it happen sooner rather than later.
  • Not to mention a LastPass designer who can actually make things look decent. I use/love the product, but man things look like crap, even with their recent 'flat' update.
  • Me and LastPass didn't get on. I quite liked it, but then put 1000+ logins in it. Big mistake. Regardless of platform, it just didn't like that and became unusable.  
  • Considering that they have extensions/plugins for every major browser at this point and even have a WP app (even if kinda poorly rated), there is a very good chance that's happening. Exciting times!
  • Is it only me or anybody else facing an issue of 99% CPU usage while on Spartan? I'm running Pentium B940. I hardly had 4 tabs open (all windows central)
  • Just you. Check what's using the CPU.  
  • It's not you. I think it still has some performance bugs. Some web sites cause it to spike CPU load.
  • Check whether chrome is open in background:D
  • LOL, that's Microsoft for you.
  • I'm not sure wanting to start anew with Spartan* but releasing it without one of the features most people complain IE doesn't have is a good idea. I mean, they should try to get it as close to Chrome and Firefox as possible for RTM. And if not possible, at least with the more obvious and visible features available.     (*I'll keep calling it Spartan. I don't care. I don't like "Edge" related to Microsoft. To me, "Edge" comes with "S6" before it and is the name of the only smartphone with a beautiful design to have ever come out of Samsung.)
  • To me, "edge" means slower than 3G.
  • Whilst the other stuff is personal opinion I do agree with you on the fact that it should be a complete as possible before launch. Extensions and customization's on board from and by major names and developers. Edge/spartan needs to work as good or better as Gc/Ff right out of the box(download).
  • Disappointing! But at least we know it will have extension support.
  • "With none of the baggage of IE" ...?
  • IE 9, and lower, compatibility is a huge baggage. Glad it got a new start
  • Ohh.. IE11 is great though
  • Will they also support extensions on mobile version of MS Edge? That's the only thing I want to know.
  • ​really I'm very excited after I watch build 2015 . I'm wondering if the mobile version will support the live events :)
  • "With none of the baggage of IE" except for the resemblance on the icon :-) PS: Not the point of the article, I know, just couldn't miss the opportunity. Besides, with "Spar...", I mean "Edge" and "IE" coexisting for a while how could someone thing that a similar icon could be a good idea? "Look ma, yeah, that website works better on Edge. Yeah, that E icon... No, ma, not this one, that other one..."
  • Yes true. But most people wont care about the name or the browser. As long as they get internet access. And isn't IE hidden from normal users?
  • Well, they can get internet access from any browser, including IE, while the whole purpose is to suggest people to use specifically this new one. Don't think IE is going to be hidden to normal users. At least not for now. And to make matters worse it seems Edge in the end is going to be an offer from the Store, user gets to download it from there, while having IE already available then my colleages, my mom, my grandma are asking: Why bother?
  • I hope these extensions will work well in phones as well, and not just PCs  
  • What's Pointer Lock?
  • http://www.w3.org/TR/2012/WD-pointerlock-20120529/ Makes the screen follow the mouse.
  • The next Lumia flagship will have a fingerprint reader while the upcoming Surface pro 4 will include some sophisticated technology and a fingerprint scanner as well.
  • Fingerprints are sooooo 1990's. Irises is where it's at now. And what's this got to do with Spartan extensions anyway?  
  • Well, if it's about being behind MS should hit the mark. They either roll things out wayyyy too soon or are so late to the party it isn't funny.
  • Edge is universal so does that mean extensions will work in phone as well?
  • Edge is not universal app
  • I can wait
  • From a reference to the ancient warriors OR Halo mythos to the U2 guitarist nickname/moniker?  
  • I snorted at this.
  • I hope that will change new blank tab to something more simple witn tiles for pined sites, and not Top Rated
  • Don't like the name Edge... Why couldn't it have been called Spartan? In comparison, Edge is a horrible name. It also has the bad rep of that almost unusable internet speed, and of Samsung. So it'll either confuse everyone or make them not want to use it. Bad idea Microsoft. Half tempted to not use it unless they rename it Spartan.
  • You talks like my 6 year old brother.. He doesn't like Baskin Robbins because of it's name..and eats it all the time ;)
  • How's Spartan not a Horrible name?
  • i love name spartan i with theyd kept it.  Hows sparten a horrible name .  Maybe its  SUBJECTIVE?
  • Since you won't have extentions ready to be implemented at launch, don't expect users to start using Edge until YOU DO.
  • So the Edge is very dull indeed.   This is the stupidest launch of a browser ever.
  • Just want to add, like so many others - I have to have my extensions to use Edge.  I installed WIN 10, and then backed out back to 8.1 IE 10 used under WIN 10 is absolutely NOT an alternative, as it works REALLY slow. Please give us our extensions.
  • itas a huge shame there isnt extentions, im guessing without that theres no addblock and for me no adblock is a no go.  The internet is riddled with fat to many advertts that to me makes it useless unless you have a adblocker.  Unless im in a minority and i dont think i am then isnt it a mistake to have released edge without this kind of suport.  im talking aobut desktop here.  On my phone there is far to many adds on the default edge browser, so much so i always change sites and avoid those heavey in advertisement.   1 is ok 3-4 isnt.
  • I think this is essential for everyone as their purposes. Hope you'll open this opportunity soon as possible.