Windows 10 app development catches up to Windows 11 with rollout of WebView2 Runtime

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What you need to know

  • Microsoft recently started rolling out the WebView2 Runtime to consumer devices running Windows 10.
  • The WebView2 Runtime allows developers to embed web content into applications.
  • The developer control is built directly into Windows 11, but has required extra work to deploy in Windows 10 apps up to this point.

Microsoft is making it a bit easier for developers to embed web content into Windows 10 applications. Yesterday, June 27, 2022, Microsoft started rolling out the WebView2 Runtime to Windows 10 Consumer devices. This addition aligns app development with Windows 11, which has had WebView2 Runtime support since it was created.

Microsoft highlights in a blog post that most general users will never interact directly with the WebView2 Runtime. They will, however, benefit from the fact that developers now have a more straightforward way to deploy the tool. WebView2 is used by a large library of applications, including Microsoft Office. The WebView2 Runtime lets developers "leverage the best of what Microsoft Edge Chromium platform can offer," according to Microsoft.

WebView2 Runtime allows developers to embed web content into applications. It's built directly into Windows 11, but required extra effort by developers to work with Windows 10 until now. Microsoft's rollout of WebView2 Runtime to Windows 10 Consumer devices should simplify the process of using the developer control.

The use of the WebView2 Runtime shouldn't have a noticeable effect on PC performance. Microsoft explains that since WebView2 Runtime and Microsoft Edge are "hard-linked" together, they only use the disk space of one product (when on the same version).

Microsoft is rolling out the WebView2 Runtime to consumer devices running the Windows 10 April 2018 update or later. It will arrive progressively, so your PC may not see the change at this time. Both Windows 10 Home and Pro editions will receive the WebView2 Runtime.

Microsoft is looking into a similar rollout for enterprise devices but does not have any set plans to share at this time.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).