Microsoft's new Chromium-powered version of Edge for Windows and macOS has reached a significant new development milestone today, as the company is now deeming the pre-release browser ready for everyday use, and has subsequently released the first "beta" build of Edge in a new access channel. This beta is the third and final preview channel for Edge, with the next stage being a stable public release.
Today's announcement means Edge is one step closer to an official public launch, which is an important milestone that Microsoft needs to reach before the new Edge can be bundled as the default browser on Windows 10. Microsoft says the Edge previews so far have been downloaded over one million times, with over 140,000 pieces of feedback being submitted by testers. Microsoft is super happy with these numbers and is pleased with the progress the new Edge has made so far.
What is the beta channel?
Regarding the logistics of the new Beta channel, Microsoft says this channel is considered to be the most stable channel for testers, and will be updated on average about every six weeks with new features and changes once they have been tested in the Canary and Dev channels, which are updated on a daily and weekly cadence. So the beta channel is suitable for those who want to use the new Edge now, but don't want to continue waiting for the stable release, which is still months away.
Joe Belfiore, CVP of Microsoft Windows Experiences, announced the following:
Today I'm thrilled to announce that a Beta release for the next version of Microsoft Edge is now available for all supported versions of Windows and macOS … While still in the preview stage, with this announcement the next version of Microsoft Edge is ready for everyday use. In the Beta today, you will see new ways to personalize your experience, along with support for 14 languages.
Microsoft also says that it has contributed over 1,000 commits to the Chromium project since development on the new Microsoft Edge began. So far, joining the Chromium project has proven to be nothing but good news for everyone involved, as there are many improvements in the pipeline coming to both Chrome and Edge now that Microsoft is contributing to the project. One such improvement is better battery life on Windows, which is a complaint many Chrome users have had for a while now.
Will you be downloading the Microsoft Edge beta or will you wait for the stable release?