Internet Explorer: 2 of the most disliked words in web development. Microsoft is hoping this will change with the new browser Microsoft Edge. The Edge browser has some planned features worth looking into. Here are a few of those features and what you can expect from Microsoft Edge.
Over 200 Features
Microsoft Edge has over 200 features either supported or in the works. For a full list, you can check out their roadmap by clicking here. This list has some old favorites and some intriguing new areas that may help them win back some fans.
Probably the user favorite feature of Edge will be the synching capability. Since most people use multiple platforms (smartphone, tablet, phablet, PC), this will be helpful in giving a consistent feel to your user experience.
Currently, Edge is not allowing extensions. But they are in the pipeline, and Edge is yelling from the rooftops, “They are coming!” So, we will just have to wait and see when in 2016 this happens.
Cortana is to Microsoft what Siri is to Apple. This is true for Windows phones. On the desktop, Cortana, Microsoft’s new personal assistant software, will work with Edge best if you have a microphone setup. Is it really a feature to get excited about? At the very least, Cortana will help you find a file faster.
Edge users will have the ability to cut-and-copy text onto clipboards, and easily write on them with a selection of highlighters and pens. These snippets and notes can then be saved to a local HTML file or Microsoft One Note. This feature could come in handy for your users, depending on the type of software you develop. Depending on how well Edge markets this feature, it may lure academics and a large crowd.
No Third-Party Toolbars
This double-edged sword has been a hotly debated feature of Edge. On one hand, no malicious software can attach itself (meaning no more calls from Mom asking how to remove them). Active X add-ins will no longer be supported. On the other hand, not everyone likes being told what to do. This increase in security may annoy developers, but overall protect users from downloading software that could impact the way they use your site.
The Small Stuff
Microsoft knows they have disappointed in the past. This time, they are working overtime to make up for it. Edge promises to be the browser for the “modern” web user. While plugins and extensions aren’t yet available, the fact that they are on their way is a huge leap forward for Microsoft. The promise of a better, faster browser seems likely at this point.
While it’s easy to brush Edge off and hope your users won’t be swayed by the devil they don’t know, the truth is, all new Windows machines will have Edge installed. It doesn’t take much online research to figure out many users never bother to change the browser their new computer is outfitted with.
Other reasons your users will be attracted to Edge: Cortana and note taking. Anything that makes poking around the web easier will always be just what they wanted. Taking the time to get to know Edge and what features you can use to your advantage will put you ahead of the game.